May 15


Navigating Hurt Feelings: Reflections on Judgment and Self-Validation

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Navigating Hurt Feelings: Reflections on Judgment and Self-Validation

In the intricate dance of human interaction, navigating hurt feelings often accompany the steps of those interactions. It’s a natural response to feeling judged or misunderstood by others. Despite our best efforts to armor ourselves against external opinions, vulnerability can seep through the cracks, leaving us raw and exposed.
My husband calls it “The Penalty of Leadership” which is also a great poem I read years ago produced by, of all the corporations, Cadillac!



As I’ve navigated my journey through hurt feelings and the weight of judgment from time to time, I’ve come to realize the importance of self-compassion and validation in the face of external scrutiny. And, guess what, I am the Cadillac of self-development experts. Even if I make mistakes.

The sting of judgment can cut deep, echoing long after the words have been spoken or actions taken.

Whether it’s criticism from colleagues, friends, family, or even strangers, the impact can be profound. In those moments, it’s easy to internalize the judgments, allowing them to define our sense of worth.

Yet, I’ve learned through the Master Key Experience Courses over the years that the opinions of others are often more reflective of their insecurities and biases than a true assessment of who I am.

One of the greatest challenges I’ve faced, and all humans face, is silencing the inner critic that echoes the sentiments of external judgment. It’s a relentless voice, weaving doubt and self-criticism into the fabric of my thoughts.

However, I’ve discovered the power of self-validation as a counterbalance. By acknowledging my feelings without judgment and offering myself compassion, I create a space for healing and growth.

Another aspect of navigating hurt feelings is understanding the dynamics of projection. Often, when others judge us, it’s a reflection of their internal struggles rather than an accurate portrayal of reality.

Recognizing this allows me to approach the situation with empathy rather than defensiveness. Instead of retaliating or internalizing the judgment, I strive to respond with understanding and kindness.

Building resilience in the face of judgment requires cultivating a strong sense of self-worth and authenticity. It means embracing my flaws and imperfections as integral parts of who I am rather than shortcomings to be hidden or ashamed of.
By embracing vulnerability, I invite connection and empathy, creating space for genuine relationships built on mutual understanding and acceptance.

Ultimately, navigating hurt feelings and the judgments of others is a journey of self-discovery and growth. It’s a reminder that I am worthy of love and acceptance, regardless of external validation.

By practicing self-compassion, empathy, and authenticity, I empower myself to rise above the noise of judgment and embrace the fullness of who I am. And in doing so, I pave the way for deeper connections and a more fulfilling life journey.

Read more articles by Davene Januszewski

About the author

Davene Januszewski, CEO of Training Solutions LLC, has been successfully networking and speaking professionally since 1998. She and her husband Mark Januszewski, The World's Laziest Networker are living their dream on the island of Kauai.

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  • Wow, Davene. Never thought of judgement in these terms. Thanks for sharing these important concepts to developing oneself, good advice for us all.

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