Why you shouldn't label people so vaguely

Updated: Jun 16

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Our mind has a tendency to sort people by groups. As soon as we meet someone new, we send him or her into one of our mental groups. It can take us less than 5 minutes after we have met someone, to label them as something in our head.




Our mind has a tendency to sort people by groups. As soon as we meet someone new, we send him or her into one of our mental groups. It can take us less than 5 minutes after we have met someone, to label them as something in our head.


My best guess on why we find somehow useful to group people, is that we think that in this way we can understand them better. That might be true until a certain point, but it can become quite limiting when it comes to building a meaningful relationship with another human being


Never Just One Thing

Labelling someone as something may come with many unconscious assumptions, that can, and will probably be, very far away from reality. A human being is never just one thing. A football player is never just a football player, and will never be just like the other football players. An engineer is never just an engineer, and will never be just like the other engineers.


We all have a story of our own. Apart from being characterised by that thing that may put us into a group, we carry inside all sorts of experiences, fears, wounds and dreams, that separate us from any group of people, and make us unique.


No ones's that simple

So when we talk to other people and we find ourselves labelling them as this or that, let's take a second to really look at them deeply. Let's think about whether we would like to be labelled as just one thing and be taken away the possibility to be anything other than that, or if we would prefer to be given the chance to surprise the people around us with the person that we truly are today.


Nobody is ever that simple. Nobody can be figured out in 5 minutes. It is impossible that we know everything about that other human being just by watching them do or say something. Just by knowing where they're from, whose family they are, what sports they like, what they studied, where they work, and what jokes they laugh at.


Allow Yourself to Go Deeper

Know more. Ask more. Go deeper. Let them surprise you. Instead of getting mad, be curious. Ask yourself why. Ask them why. But more importantly, listen, look at them, look at their facial expressions, look at their hands.


When your mind is leaving this moment, and all your thoughts are working together to create the perfect label, remember that one label is not enough. Remember that that would be too vague to be true. Remember that adding that person to just that one group, is a disrespect to the broadness and beauty of human nature. Remember that in this unfair world, you are being given the opportunity in this moment, to be fair, to let them speak, to let them be seen, to let them be heard.


Be the person that sees far beyond what everyone else sees. Dare to peel the layers that cover the human being standing in front of you. Trust me, you will not regret it. You can not regret going into the adventure of diving into someone else's soul. That's where true meaning is found. That's how true bonds are created. That's how true relationships are built. By letting go of the labels, and choosing to see the truth.


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