We judge too quickly sometimes.

That is the observation I made upon crossing the street to try to catch a public transportation on the other side. I was at the mall to buy some stuff and when I left the premises, I joined the other pedestrians also waiting for their turn to cross. Other pedestrians had walked ahead the lane but a white automobile stood out on the street like a sore thumb because its driver was speeding like there’s no tomorrow and prompted the second batch of pedestrians to wait. Upon closer look I saw it was a white BMW. I heard the girl beside me telling her boy companion that what they’ve witnessed is one living proof of how the rich can afford to be arrogant even on the streets.

I don’t know the driver of the white BMW, I don’t know why he or she was speeding at the time but it struck me how others can pass on judgment rather too quickly. There could be many reasons why he or she was speeding, that’s why I do not agree with the girl’s statement. My initial thought was he or she was probably in a hurry to catch his or her appointment. I did not ever think that the BMW driver was driving too fast because he or she wanted to show off his or her car. Whatever the reason was, the BMW owner did not violate traffic rules – he or she was coming from the other lane which saw the green light lit up. It just so happened there were lesser cars coming in on our side from that lane.

In group conversations with her friends, the girl’s observation may be harmless and may even spin off a new joke about the great divide between the rich and the poorer class. Still the thoughts that we instantly come up with can later form our behavior and usually they start with seemingly harmless generalizations. We may get too comfortable to form generalizations based on few facts and speculations and then we judge too quickly.

We all know that we can change our thoughts or nip negative ones in the bud – that’s how our subconscious programming develops. We must learn to be mindful of the thoughts we engender.

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