You have likely heard or possibly used this expression “Yea, yea tell it to the judge”. In my experience, it is usually said in a demeaning and sarcastic manner when the speaker disagrees with another’s perspective on a matter. It’s one of those statements that implies messages such as: “You don’t know what you’re talking about”; “I disagree and it’s for someone else to decide – certainly not you”; “A smarter person than you knows the answer”; and so on. The implication is there’s a right and wrong – a win and lose – and those sentiments, no matter how they are expressed, tend to polarize and add to increased positional thinking and reacting.

In the middle of an argument statements like “Yea, yea tell it to the judge” also serve to dismiss what is being said and put down the person to whom they are said. Whatever the explicit or implicit message intended by this expression it may be challenging to not back down, though doing so seems to acknowledge that the speaker has the right and power to end the discussion.

For this week’s blog, consider a time when you said, “Tell it to the judge”:

  • What was the person saying or doing that led you to say “tell it to the judge”?
  • What impact was there on the other person?
  • What were you feeling about the other person at the time? What were you feeling about yourself?
  • What did you intend by expressing this statement?
  • When you have been on the receiving end of such a statement, what was the impact on you?
  • What would you “tell the judge” in the conflict situation you have in mind? What would the other person “tell the judge”?
  • What would you want a ‘judge’ to do or say to help you in the situation?
  • What may the other person hope a ‘judge’ would say to help her or him in this situation?
  • If you were an impartial ‘judge’ hearing both sides of the conflict, what may you say regarding the differences between you and the other person?
  • What else may you say, in future situations, instead of “tell it to the judge”?

What other ConflictMastery™ Quest(ions) may you add here?

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