Labels: How to Use Them and When to Ditch Them

Hello my name is labels

Yesterday I shared a post on ways that you can pursue your passion without starting a business. Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone. So I show you why finding your passion doesn’t have to be about starting a business and what you can do with it instead. I think that post should help take the pressure off you if you’re struggling to figure out your passion because, in your mind, finding it means you have to start a business.

In fact, if you feel that way, I highly recommend you check it out after this (especially because today’s post is pretty short).

But I’m on a slightly different flex today. Today I want us to remember who we are.

And I’m going to make this quick.

We have so many labels. There are so many ways that we can identify ourselves that, in efforts to make sure people know who we are, we forget who we are.

You are this person’s child. Or a member of that family. You are such-and-such’s mother. You’re an account manager, a director of things, some company’s baller/shot-caller.

But who are you when the labels come off?

Yes, you’ll still be someone’s child or parent or relative. You may stay in that same line of work for years. But who are you when you’re not actively doing those things? And what is it about you that made you do those things?

There are lots of mothers, but they are not all the same kind of person. There are lots of directors of things but, while they may share some similar qualities, their different styles come from their individual personalities.

Who is the person behind the label?

Is that person funny? Compassionate? Sarcastic? Forgiving? Adventurous? Charismatic? Paranoid? Friendly? Intuitive? Charitable? Organized?

All of the above?

Because those things probably led you to the label you wear today.

If you are not compassionate, but are super sarcastic and highly impatient, you probably wouldn’t choose to teach young children.

The label is a reflection of who you are, not the definition of who you are.

When you leave a job, a relationship, or even your hometown, the core of who you are is probably the same. But shedding a label might remind you that you were—and still are—so much more than that.

You can live beyond the labels that you—or anyone else—give to you.

You can be free of the restraints that those labels force upon you. Once you know how to live past your labels, once you don’t let those labels define you, you can use them to your advantage.

Labels can be keys to open doors. And once you’re in, you’re in. You are in.

Don’t let your label weigh you down. Let it lift you into the opportunities you want.

If your label becomes too heavy, you might be leaning into it too heavily.

And you might be letting your label make your decisions for you instead of making decisions for yourself based on who you are.

Don’t let what you do—or don’t do—make you forget who you are.

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