How many times a day are you judged by the way you dress or the kind of car you drive? How many times a day do you judge someone else’s appearance or even the way they talk and walk?

At school, university, office or even when walking in a mall surrounded by strangers, the judgement game is never ending. I know that I judge everyone, putting them into categories and on shelves in my head.

In our society with different nationalities and ethnicities, we depend on the ability to interact with people primarily through sight. Therefore, we worry about our appearance a lot and how people will “Think of us” or “Think of me” if I spent all day wearing this T-shirt or not matching my pants, and women worry about carrying a well-known brand of bag. Hence, we spend a great deal of time and money tweaking our image to make it more fitting to others.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against looking good. But, a judgemental society is not productive and it kills the creativity in us. Why is that? Because we are comfortable in following trends.

Even in marriages, you’ll find examples of our judgemental tendencies. We marry having an idea of how we want our partner to be, and then when we do get married, we refuse to accept the differences they have and start judging that person, and try to change them to our liking. Many people refuse to change and even if they do change they are not convinced about it.

I believe that this is one of the major variables why many marriages fail. Accepting people for who they are is a blessing, and a trait that not all of us have. We as a society are judgemental, because we lack acceptance. We should learn to open our heart and accept people; every person we meet has something special to give to us if we are open to receive it.

We should learn to accept others and try to adapt to them rather than changing them. No two people are alike. No two hearts beat to the same rhythm.

- Mohammad Al Olama is an Emirati entrepreneur based in Dubai.