I’ve been thinking lately about the labels we give ourselves and others. The ones we’ve grown up with are sometimes the same ones we are awarded as adults. Labels typically refer to words or phrases used to describe or identify something or someone. These can be positive or negative descriptors, and they are often associated with stereotypes or judgments. “Labels” refer to the words or traits used to describe someone, such as… “That woman is too intense.” “Wow, she’s too shy (or too assertive).” “That girl is being too difficult.” “She must be insecure…she’s wearing makeup when she works out!” Whatever the statement we’ve heard over and over, it begins to sink in…deeply. We become conditioned to stuffing down those parts of ourselves that we’ve experienced shame for. They may be personality traits, strengths or weaknesses, or even physical attributes. We bury the parts of us that aren’t as glamorous or make people feel discomfort. This is not a conversation about growing and working on our stuff. We all need to be moving towards the healthiest version of ourselves on an intentional basis. I’m red flagging the judgments we place on ourselves and others without giving it a second thought. The words that consume our internal dialogue or the verdicts we place on those around us.