No-box-thinking with Dinah Liversidge

No-box-approach to the labels we wear

June 14, 2019 Dinah Liversidge Season 1 Episode 2
No-box-thinking with Dinah Liversidge
No-box-approach to the labels we wear
Chapters
No-box-thinking with Dinah Liversidge
No-box-approach to the labels we wear
Jun 14, 2019 Season 1 Episode 2
Dinah Liversidge

How often do you find yourself labelling others, or yourself? We all dot it - it's become human nature and it makes it simple to group things in a way we can understand.
In this short podcast, I explore a different way of seeing the impact these labels have on our outcomes.

Show Notes Transcript

How often do you find yourself labelling others, or yourself? We all dot it - it's become human nature and it makes it simple to group things in a way we can understand.
In this short podcast, I explore a different way of seeing the impact these labels have on our outcomes.

Speaker 1:

Hi, I'm Diana Liversidge. Thanks for joining me here on my podcast and they box thinking yes. Today I wanted to talk a bit about labels. I think when we put labels on other people or on ourselves, we do everyone a real disservice often in life if it feels safe and easy to label things because then we think we know what they are, but often when we label someone, we do it based on a first impression or a very short interaction and because we've then applied that label, we think that who they are and we make a lot of assumptions about that person.

Speaker 1:

I think often though, the really damaging labels are the ones we apply to ourselves and of course those labels weren't initially applied to us by ourselves. They were things that other people have said to us enough, but we have made them our own truth and we've stuck a label on ourselves or put ourselves in a box. That kind of reinforces the message from that label. And sadly, of course it's rare that these labels are positive. Most often they're negative and they reinforce a negative message. Now we use these labels in lots of different ways. We're not doing a lot of it consciously, but repetitive behavior often becomes sub conscious. It's something we just do and I'd love you to think about some of the labels that you wear and perhaps why you're still wearing them. Yeah. Now what do I mean by that? Well, we can use labels to create a space around ourselves that says to somebody else he back, stay clear.

Speaker 1:

Give me a wide berth. Don't come into close. And what that often does is it protects us. It forms a shell, the label. It is a great way of saying, you know my reputation, you know, I'm a whatever that label says, so leave me BS. It can also give a misleading impression to others because sometimes we were a label to create an impression that perhaps isn't wholly authentic. Someone often said to me when I was a kid, you're so confident. Well, I wasn't any more confident than the next kid. I was just really good at wearing that label because it meant I got picked for the things I liked doing. I didn't get picked for the things I liked doing. So I showed confidence in drama class or an English, but I didn't wear that label in maths, so I didn't get picked to answer questions there.

Speaker 1:

I did a really interesting exercise with a team a couple of years ago who were struggling to really work as a team and I saw that perhaps the leader of this team was not perceived the way he thought. He was by the other members of the team. And we'd been doing some work together as a group for awhile. And I suggested one team meeting that everyone came up to the table and pick the label that they felt represented the mood they were in that day. And I'd written lots and lots of different words on sticky labels and there was some blank ones with pens so that people could write words if I hadn't expressed what they were feeling. And it was intriguing to look at the words people picked in the group, which varied from, um, anxious, too frustrated, too gleeful, gorgeous word. Um, and I asked everybody to look at the words people had chosen.

Speaker 1:

And then to go to the tables and pick the words they had thought applied. So in other words, how are they coming across? They may think they're coming across as confident, but perhaps they're coming across as cocky or unapproachable. And it was a fascinating exercise to see that we often think we're wearing a really clear label that says, this is who I am, but perhaps it's not how other people see that label. So I'd love you to think, am I coming across the way? I'd like to. Am I portraying the label? I think I am. Would it perhaps be a good in, you know, really good time to look at? How about if I let that label go? Okay. The last one I wondered about for me, and I talked about this with a friend recently, it, what labels do we hang on to that don't actually serve us?

Speaker 1:

And this isn't saying they're a bad thing. Yeah. It could be that time of our lives, a certain way of being, a way of portraying ourselves a certain label that we allowed ourselves to, to wear and embrace. So a really important purpose. If we're in a situation where we're less than confident, feel less than safe, feel less than authentic. Sometimes a label that says, give me space, allows us to feel protected and secure. Sometimes perhaps we'd been in a role that we didn't feel yet really ready for. And so wearing a label that says, I've got this, I'm totally in control, was how we got through the day until we actually did have the skills and the confidence to be that person in that role. And that can be a role from partner to motherhood, to fatherhood, to sister. You know, these are not necessarily working labels. It's a life that we do this with. So take a minute today and ask, what label am I wearing still? It just does not serve me anymore. How about taking it off, leaving it to one side and seeing how day to day feels without it. I'd love to hear from you and no how unboxing and unlabeling is going for you. Thanks for joining me. Hope you've enjoyed it.