Observation = Effective Communication while Judgement = Disconnection! #184

in dsound •  2 years ago  (edited)

How do we separate what we see with what we think of it and why is this such a really helpful skill in our lives?

► Listen to Day #184 of Happier People Podcast First on @dsound?

Observation = Effective Communication while Judgement = Disconnection

I think that differentiating between observation and judgment helps us to communicate more effectively and our lives are often a whole lot easier if we simply communicate more effectively.

Lots of times the arguments, the frustrations, the tough spots we get put in can be traced to simply a lack of effective communication. Let's look at the difference between observation and judgment because this is one pain point that's easy for a lot of us to get into.

Observation means to simply look at what we see and communicate it.

For example, I did this painting with my daughter yesterday, and I could look at this and say, "Oh, this is a beautiful painting we did together."

That's a judgment.

I have looked at something, I have assessed. I have said what I think of it.

Here's an observation.

An observation is when I look at this and I say, "I see blue, orange, red and green paint on here. I see letters on here that appear to spell Madeleine."

These are observations.

The nice thing about observations is that observations tend to be things that most of us can agree on. If you came over to my house and you looked at the computer monitors, you might observe that the dust is on the computer monitor screens.

That's an observation.

You might look at the background behind me here and say that appears to be a green curtain behind your head.

That's an observation.

Now, you could throw some judgments in there.

You could say, "Oh, that's a beautiful green curtain behind your head."

That includes both a judgment and an observation.

Or you could just see something like these dusty computer monitors and say, "Jerry is such a disgusting pig."

Now, that is essentially a judgment based on an observation.

For communication, it's advantageous to focus on observations because observations we can generally agree on. Almost anyone, we can look and see some of the dust on the computer monitors and say, "Yes, there's some dust on those computer monitors," and we can each make our own assessments.

Some of us might say, "He's a filthy disgusting pig. Wipe his computer monitors."

Others of us might say, "I have dust on my computer monitor too. That's normal."

And others of us might say, "Oh, that's beautiful. He's had these computers so long that there's dust on them."

You see, judgments often are what get us in trouble. Our observations lots of times meanwhile are what we are really trying to communicate. We mean to just describe the world around us to the people around us and the problem is when we wrap everything we describe up in judgment, then often we trigger people into arguments and we had no intention of doing that.

We simply were trying to describe the world around us and we end up being completely ineffective at communicating what we were communicating, and then we get frustrated.

For example, if you came over here and someone asked, "What did you think of Jerry's house?"

You might look around and say, "Well, he had this ugly painting up from his daughter, and then he had dust on his computer monitors like a filthy pig."

Now, if you have communicated that with someone who is a big fan, then they might just not even hardly hear or be able to share the experience. The person might say, "Well, you're just a jerk. Jerry's awesome and I hate that you said these things about him."

When all you wanted to communicate was, “Well, it was a bit dusty and there were some paintings there,” those are kind of impartial things to communicate.

But what happens when we wrap things up in judgment, we have a hard time connecting with each other. I think what most of us are trying to do when we are communicating, I think most of us what we really want to do is connect with each other. We are hoping to connect with each other. We are hoping for someone to understand us and when we communicate an observation it makes that easier.

For example, I saw a comment on one of my posts recently on Steem that had a lot of judgment in it.

The observation could have been easily communicated by saying, "Jerry, you used an upvoting bot," or even that has a little bit more detail, you could say, "I saw that @buildawhale voted on this, which according to the Steem Bot Tracker is an upvoting Bot."

That's an observation.

Now, saying that all these judgments related to having used that voting bot, buying votes, then that essentially ruins the opportunity to connect because of all the judgments in there.

What I've learned is to stick to the facts, and then allow other people to judge as desired because this gives me some space for my own judgment. I want to just look around like a child and describe my world without deciding whether every part of it is good or bad.

You see, I can look around and say, "I'm sitting on a brown couch."


"Oh, this couch is so comfortable."

That's a judgment.

It's helpful for communicating with others to stick to observations, but most of us have never been trained the difference between what is a judgment versus what is simply something we see and observe.

This is especially helpful with people because we are almost always trained to try to label everything other people do as good or bad.

"Well, he said this at work and he's just blah, blah, blah."

Whereas, if we stick to, "I heard him say this at work," then that's an observation and we don't have to put our moral judgment of it on there, and what's better, when we are in the habit of communicating observations, we can also just pick the observations out and drop the judgments when we are listening.

When I see someone saying, "You paid for these snake-oil votes and this is the problem, and you are all…"

I can say, "Okay. This person has observed that I used some voting bots on a post and this person is more than likely in pain or feeling inadequate about their own position."

I can translate the judgments into what kind of experience the describer is having of life, and then I can see that the judgments can be argued with, and the judgments are no reflection of who I am or what I'm doing.

Now, we could say that observations are true while the judgments are subjective. Anyone can go make a judgment and anyone else can go make a different judgment, but we have the same observation often in the middle of all those judgments.

Thank you very much for reading this post or watching the video below and learning about it today. I've talked about this because I found this very helpful out of the book "Nonviolent Communication" by Marshall B. Rosenberg.

I found this very helpful to learn the distinction between observation and judgment, to stick with observation and to be aware of when I am doing observation plus judgment, as well as to essentially be able to identify that in others, separate the observation out and essentially forgive the other person or accept that the other person may be conditioned to communicate judgment, but really connection is the goal of the communication.

I appreciate you joining me here on day 184 of Happier People Podcast.

I love you.

You are awesome.

I hope you have a wonderful day today.

Final words

Thank you for reading this blog post, which was originally filmed as the video below.

If you found this post helpful on Steem, would you please upvote it and follow me because you will then be able to see more posts like this in your home feed?


Jerry Banfield with edits by @gmichelbkk on the transcript from @deniskj

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Hi Jerry will be upgrading my SP delegation . Please acknowledge acceptance. @nkkb

@nkkb to @jerrybanfield succesfully upgraded SP to 6000


Congratulations @nkkb with this upgrade you are now one of the top 10 delegators! Thank you very much for upgrading your delegation as explained in the tutorial at https://steemit.com/steem/@jerrybanfield/65wju0wr.

Sorry, but it's not jerry. Jerry doesn't look like jew from phoenix orden))

Jerry younger. Shaved.

@doelist are you doing an observation or a judgement? Our comments and reaction are driven by our belief system, there is a thin line between observation and judgements, as well our perception becomes our reality.
good article @jerrybanfield

@jerrybanfield you are right. Have learnt a good lesson from your post today.

Observation posses and good and versatile avenue to give an accurate judgement, there are people who jump into judgement without a single look or observation at the subject matter, and the fact that you made mention that observations are the true facts and judgement could just be done by any one, aligns with mine. Beautiful work @jerrybanfield...i have learnt alot from you and how you whole heartedly contribute in various manner in this platform and i appreciate it..thank you @jerrybanfield

Thank you for this. I found this quite funny and entertaining. I have been finding myself hung up with judgements, especially negative ones in situations with people who have caused me a great deal of emotional and spiritual difficulty. When we come from a place of observation rather than judgement it is much easier to stay in a neutral space rather than get caught in an emotional mess. Thanks again and here is my entry for your SWC... sorry it took me so long. Mother of 3 under 6 years old so plenty busy but I definitely wanted to share it.


Great post @jerrybanfield

Your ideas about observation remind me of the concept of mindfulness. That is rather than engaging with our thoughts or judging, it's best to simply let feelings wash over us and accept them–both positive and negative.

I am fan @jerrybanfield , reblog your post

Well written post. I disagree with you on one account.
Judgment may be subjective but it CAN have an objective quality. That is, if the observations you made you judgment upon are true and that you are diligent enough. judgment, when it is based on facts and argued respectfully, can have a good effect. even positive judgment, because it serves to reenforce good things.

you create a great post..... your writing skill was very different....... thanks for shear this amazing post..... :)

thanks you clear the point on this

thanks you clear the point on this.a very good explantaion

Nice post you have got here. U made it look simpler. I understand the contrast. Observations are what we observe and what we become aware of , judgement is giving sort of value to what we observe. You posts are always informative. Thank you sir.


well - human dominance effect over others, lacks the jugement over his communication.

We all have different ways of appreciating the things we see, some of us observe, others make judgments, sometimes correct and sometimes wrong. The correct thing would be to observe and know before making any judgment. Each of us has different ways of dealing with situations. we see in the problems that all is lost, and others see in the problems a new opportunity to move forward.

The Art of Communication is very much an art! Problem is (as you point out) not many of us are very good at it. I think some of us are worse in the written word (e.g. comments!) where tone can get lost in translation compared to face-to-face.

This is a useful post to reflect on and I'll look at the book recommendation too.

I think your write up @jerrybanfield is a top-notch in our everyday life, as long as we will meet and contribute to people's success or projects. When we master the knowledge you are trying to implant in us then communication becomes communicable,,,thank you...Am new here , still scratching my head to find my step and how things are done in steemit.

Observation is generally a trait shared by everyone based on individual perceptions of things which sometimes do vary. Assertion of such claims without being receptive to other people's opinions makes one to be judgemental.

Thanks for sharing this @jerrybanfield

painting with your child ... really a good parent, your home must be harmonious, and taking time for the child is the most needed by every child
a good parent for her child @jerrybanfield

all good and checkin into dsound now

Yeah...thats valuable for us to make sure what happen first (observation). In the other word we have to see closely what we hear. Nice...and thankyou

Nice post @jerrybanfield

judging anyone can never be good. We can observe and make assessments, right? "Connection is the goal of the communication," you pointed a useful thing. Glad to read your post, it makes many things clear. Thank you so much

@jerrybanfield I get inspired everyday on STEEMIT because of your communication abilities. Thank you

hello @jerrybanfield you're handsome boy. I see you rarely share post during this week,how are you? are you okay?
this is an interesting post, although the first dsond but this is really amazing. your first dsoud is the best

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What a magnificent & creativity sir just one is one thing and its wonderful sir


When I take reality seriously, it doesn't seem to hurt my feelings as much. lol

Observing and taking the right words is something difficult that not all people dominate, we can say that is.. is acquired with experience and time, it is something related to the maturity or wisdom that we always touch in our parents.

Wow. Its great artwork, greatgreat

Insightful post. But if we vote for you as a witness there should be an incentive, just saying show some love it's valentine

Cool post boss. ☆Happy☆ ♡Valentine's♡ ☆Day☆

Amazing Idea of the post

All to often our psychological biases get the best of us. Great post my friend. keep up the great style!!

Thank you for this post @jerrybanfield. Its been inspiring to me and i have learnt a lot from this post.


ooh YEAH! this is a hot topic with me at the moment. I was writing about it a few weeks ago... I think many people cannot even understand the concept of observing without judgement. Its almost like second nature to most people.. Until you can snap yourself out of it!!!

There is way out of it, which is to practice detachment and equanimity .. when we can master these two states, we no longer need to judge anything!

That post is worth a read i'd say, Its part of a series im nearly finished.. i think you will see what I mean... its a good'un..some REAL gems in there ..



Some very astute commentary on the difference between judgement and observation which gives one much to reflect on.

a beautiful day for you @jerrybanfield , this is a very nice your first dsound posting, you are indeed able to contribute i like your style brother. quickly attracted public attention to be trending in the feed table. I think this is a masterpiece of a friend @jerrybanfield

thanks for give us information are very happy to be a with you in steemit.

Nice music
I really like music you post

I think judgments at times can bring out the truth. If someone observes something for several days and it seems to follow a pattern a person would obviously come to a judgment. That doesn't mean the judgment is right or wrong it just means that more clarity to a situation sometimes needs to be brought into what is being observed.

Most often than not, judgment naturally comes to people`s behavior before observation. You have pointed some good points here that are most people not doing in their day by day living. But that makes us human in a whole without even looking into the matter whether we should be observing or judging or just do both.

Keep up @jerrybanfield! I am an avid fan of yours. :)
I love the way you write, how you style your writing and put emotions into it. I can see through your words come your sincere heart with best of intentions.


Good observation of the importance to make a difference between judgment and observation when communicating. Very helpful to avoid misunderstandings or accidentally hurting other peoples feelings. Did I get it right :D??

Nice post.

Nice piece, informative. Really got the point


This is a helpful post and one I have been thinking and writing about. I wonder though how much of our observations are based on a judgement that lies behind them? If my wife makes the observation that I have gained weight, it would be a true observation, but I would probably feel that it was "a little judgey."

Also, Part of what you are speaking of is also impacted by our lost ability to make a sound argument which I recently wrote about because it seems very healthy to have conversations about the underlying point of potential disagreemnet, but to do so in a cordial fashion.

What you say about us listening and trying to separate out the judgement part and get to the helpful observation component so we can give proper diligence to what the other is saying.

Thanks for the post!

@phaazer1 [SquareLink]

If you can Dream it, you can Steem it.

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nice vary good vary vary good

I think Marshall Rosenberg is great (of course that's a judgement.) That book you linked is on my list. I've been using Nonviolent communication and it helps me navigate through a lot (especially communicating with my four year old daughter). I learned it by listening and taking notes on his nine hour training course on Youtube.

Nice post @jerrybanfield.
I like it

you are sharing really amazing and helpful things in every post.keep ur efforts like this u are always good keep sharing like this @jerrybanfield

Hello watching your every single vid. on youtube (but just about crypto, sorry) I am new here never thought that posting articles will catch me. But thanks to you i give it a try. But can you make video about curator rewards? I didnt get nothing like 2 week and i follow you strategy and another think if its good to resteem or not. It will be great if you can do manual again. Thanks

How lovely photo please upvote my blog @momin109


best regards, I am beginner in steemit, I want to ask the master how to succeed in steemit ..?

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Great article about judgment and observation, in my humble opinion observation and judgment both are the necessary part of life but actual problem is wrong observation and wrong judgment which ruins life , right produces right and wrong produces wrong.

Please vot me

Jerry that is a really solid explanation,i do agree that a good relationship is based on communication and skills ,most relationships fail due to cummulated tinny issues.

wow.. that's a great reasoning between what we see from what we think.. absolutely.. at times what captured by our eyes doesn't register to our mind and it responds differently..

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