Are Labels Ruining Your Life?
Updated: May 17
We humans can often be unnecessarily hard on ourselves and others. We have a deep desire to know our place in the world and to be able to place others. Quite often, we use labels in our attempt to understand just how we all fit in, without even realizing that we are doing it. All to often, they are negative labels. What we don’t realize is how much theses labels can hurt us and others. How our choice of words affects not only our own energies but those of all beings throughout the universe.
Yes, I said all Beings throughout the universe!
All words, and thoughts for that matter, have an effect not just on you but on the universal whole. Moreover the energy you create writes on your subconscious mind creating a new reality. The challenge then is to be mindful of your thoughts and words. Whatever you state to yourself repetitively, even if you know on a conscious level that it is not true, your subconscious mind believes, so strive always to use positive words to create a positive reality.
For example, after forgetting something important, have you ever said to yourself, "I am so stupid." You know that you are just annoyed but your subconscious takes you seriously and reinforces this reality.
Once your subconscious mind believes something, it sets out to confirm it's belief and it can self-sabotage your efforts to change and grow.
In fact, you may be holding several labels on yourself that you are not even aware of because you have been saying and believing them for so long. They may be about how well you believe you can learn, work, communicate, love, drive or even show up on time.
These labels literately control your life and stop you from moving forward.
In addition, when we use labels on other people, just as in judging, we start to see only the label. Labels are stagnating and do not allow the other person to grow. People will look for information that confirms the label that has been placed on them. They will speak to the person according to their label and don’t hear anything beyond the label.
People will literately ignore anything that isn't in line with their belief about the other person and the label they put on them.
For example, if you believed that a person was clumsy and always stated that they were clumsy, you would ignore all the times that they walked or did anything with grace and ease.
Then if anything happened that even remotely looked clumsy you then would say, "see, what did I tell you, you're always so
This can make the person very nervous in front of you and the more the person worries the more likely it is for something to happen. It then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I have seen some men do this to women when they believe that all women are too emotional. The woman could go for months and not be upset with anything then something happens, he will go, "see, what did I tell you, women always get upset." All along 'forgetting' when they, themselves were upset.
Sometimes these men will even provoke the other person, by saying to them repeatedly, now don’t get upset. This is treating the other person is a way that you believe they will react which in turn creates the very behavior that you were hoping to avoid in the first place.
Some labels carry an even bigger group bias- think about the words Democrat and Republican today- I am sure right away your mind came up with a bunch of labels for each of them- good or bad depending on your own beliefs. Often these labels are reinforced by the media, people in positions of power or seeming authority, and those around you- appearing to confirm and even justify the label.
People see and hear what they want to believe. And compounding that is, what you see and hear is filtered through your bias. So, in the end, you receive only a partial message that leaves out anything that contradicts your beliefs.
Sometimes people hold back information from the other person in the hopes of confusing them and to keep their beliefs about the other person's beliefs or abilities alive. This creates the behavior that the other person wants to prove.
Labeling can also lead to criticism, bigotry, and hatred. Especially when small children are listening to us. They are learning how to act in society and repeat what they hear, which in turn affects how their future will turn out.
Some labels are:
Black / White
Slow / Fast
ADHD / Mentally ill
Bureaucrats / Politicians
Hothead / Zen master
Tall / Short
Smart / Stupid
Good / Bad
Right / Wrong
Trouble maker/ Peace Keeper
You get the picture.
Even positive labels can hurt and annoy.
I am sure you have all heard someone say that they are tired of always being labeled the cute, good, smart one etc. It stifles who they are and their potential to grow if they believe they must stay within the boundaries of their assigned label.
Labels can lead to a sense of tribalism, separating us from others in a way that is not often healthy or healing. We start developing an- us against them mentality, and demonizing or ostracizing others who do not belong to our particular self-imposed label. We begin to feel superior or inferior, to claim victim-hood, and demand others accept our chosen label while angrily denying any label we feel does not fit our current mindset.
Ask yourself, what labels do you use for yourself and others? Start noting how often you say them and ask yourself, do you believe they are true. Then start replacing them with sayings that are more positive and productive in growing to your own potential.
Remember words have power, each word carries its own energy signature that works either in conjunction with our energy i.e. aura or against it. Words can bring peace, confidence, and joy, or hate, anger, and sadness. Always strive to be mindful of the words and labels you use, not just for your own sake, but because the energy once expelled will be sent out into the universal consciousness. The universe receives this energy and returns to you similar energy. Like attracts like- send out only the type of energy you wish to receive- because the universe does not discriminate it is unbiased and will return to you what you send to it.
While you are doing that, contemplate this quote:
"Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an
understanding of ourselves." --Carl Jung
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