In today’s article, I am going to further speak to what I shared in several recent articles. The articles, I Am Not a “Label” — Being Our Own Best Cheerleader and Are You “Anchored To” and “Limited By” a Label of “Brain Injury”?.
As I reflected upon the content of these articles, I realized that those who label and those who own the label, give away their power. I also began to realize that those who label and those who take on the label, both, do so by an active CHOICE.
What I mean by asserting that those who label and those who own the label do so by an active choice is that they both are willing participants. Through being willing participants, both parties in the process set themselves up to be victimized and a victim through the labeling process.
Let Me Explain
As I reflected upon the active CHOICE I realized that no one benefits. Labeling and owning the label only serves to isolate. Isolate those who would label from the value of what they could receive from the individuals whom they choose to label. Isolate the individuals who own the label by leading them to believe that who they are as individuals, is defined by the label.
A Comment Received
Today I received a comment in response to my article, Are You “Anchored To” and “Limited By” a Label of “Brain Injury”?. The individual shared with me that once he was given the label of a TBI / ABI, as he poignantly put it, ” that no one really gives you much thought anymore”. He went on to say that no matter how hard you try, people who label you do not think it is enough. The sad reality is that by dismissing and discounting, the individual is led to believe that who they no longer matters. After reading his comment, I shared something with him that I discovered through my process. Although people may want or need to label, their label does not have to limit our ability or capacity to excel in and with our lives.
I went on to share that I may feel limited by the label; I do not have to be limited by the label. Although those who choose to label me miss out on the gifts, talents, and abilities that I bring to the “table of life”, I do not have to miss out on what I can bring to the table of life. Although I may feel limited by my limitations, I do not have to be limited. Although those who choose to label me may never be able to see my greatness, I can still shine. I can learn to think and live out of the “box” of other people’s expectations of the label that they may want to place on me. Having this awareness gives me tremendous hope. Hope that reminds me that I NO LONGER have to limit who I am as an individual based on a label of misconceptions.
With my awareness, I realize that I need to be vigilant to not take on the labels that other people may want or need me to own. I also realize that I need to be vigilant so as to not label other people.
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