Let Judgement Go to Find Comfort Praying (4 of 4)

Let Judgement Go
Photo by Amanda Flavell on Unsplash

Ability to let judgement go is the logical, valuable 4th step in becoming comfortable with prayer, comfortable praying. This post is the continuation and conclusion of parts 1, 2, and 3.

Whatever we are doing, we always want to do it better. That usually starts with focusing on what we think we are doing wrong. That self-judgement,  when it comes to praying, usually creates a much higher hurdle than most people can get over. So we may opt out of a regular prayer practice.

If you’re agreeing with any part of what I’ve said so far, please keep reading.

Let’s look at the benefit of self-reflection over self-judgement. Then let’s consider the positive result that is self-awareness. Finally, we can apply that to praying and decide if it makes a difference. I am betting it will.

Self-judgement can be a burden

Self-judgement can be defined as opinions we have about ourselves based on our thoughts about ourselves and the meanings (good/bad) we attach to those thoughts.

Have you ever finished praying and right after “Amen” thought “That was a lousy prayer” or something along those lines?

That is self-judgement.

Jon Kabat-Zinn said: Our opinions of our selves actually get in the way of being ourselves.”

See why self-judgement can be a burden? Recommendation: avoid self-judgement of your praying. Instead consider that

Self-reflection is a useful tool

Self-reflection is an observational, non-judgemental process. It is like a look in our rearview mirror. It shows us that we’ve “been there, done that”.

Stated more exactly, self-reflection is when we take the time to pause, think, reflect, and evaluate what we have learned (not how well we have performed).

Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche offered that: Self-reflection is a practice, a path, and an attitude. It is the spirit of taking an interest in that which we usually try to push away.

Self-reflection works especially well with questions we ask of ourselves. Two that work well for me are

  1. What did I like about my praying this time? (Note: self-reflection can be used with much more than praying.)
  2. What do I want to do differently or better next time?

Recommendation: Make the moment or two after you pray a regular part of your praying practice. Use that time to self-reflect, whether you use questions such as mine or not. Give that a try and you’re likely to find that

Self-awareness is the reward

When we don’t self-judge and we allow ourselves plenty of self-reflection, we have ample opportunity for self-awareness.

How is that a good thing?

Self-reflection brings clearly to mind what we have thought, said, done, and felt. Self-awareness offers clarity of what we can do to maintain what’s good, to improve what can be better, and to discard what is of no more use.

Of several statement of why self-awareness is good, this is one by Gary Van Warmerdam is my favorite: Self-awareness is the first step in creating what you want and mastering your life.

Recommendation: Make time to allow your mind and your heart to work together with what your self-reflection shows you. That work will produce self-awareness. That self-awareness will produce ideas and motivation to maintain some things, to improve other things, and to discard a few things. Those things may be relate to your praying.

Praying the relief from letting judgement go

Sharer of Blessings, thank you for the release and relief of letting go:
letting go of judging my efforts to pray,
of judging myself an inferior pray-er,
of holding my efforts up to my own ridicule.
Thank you for letting me know that
that can all be released
that I may have relief and freedom to know you
in my heart and to know you are the source of my prayers.
That is such sweet and soothing certainty.
Thank you, Good Friend God, that this release
brings me so much closer to knowing you.
And so it is. Amen.

Love & blessings,




November 18, 2019

Posted on November 18, 2019 at 7:00 am by Tim · Permalink
In: Awareness, Prayer, Praying · Tagged with: , ,