Who Are You Without the Labels You’ve Been Given by Society?

How About the Labels You’ve Given Yourself?

Edith Tollschein
5 min readMar 30, 2019


We pride ourselves on where we come from, on the things we’ve acquired, education titles, the neighborhood we live in, the cars we drive, the schools/universities we attend, our physical appearances etc. Nothing wrong with being proud of our achievements. Nothing wrong with taking pride in our ancestry and heritage, but whether consciously or subconsciously, this stuff is what influences the labels that the society gives us and the labels we give ourselves. Some labels serve us for the better, some do not.

A person’s received labels shapes a person’s identity in society and dictates their future beliefs, choices and goals. Malvika Mahendhra

Labels are certainly needed to distinguish things, to create some form of order. Labels are what we use to categorize things in order to solve the complexities of our environment. However, to some extent, labels have caused more harm than good: Rather than bringing humans together, it has brought separation and unconscious prejudice. Labels have caused us to conform to societal expectations.

People will label you as lazy because you are homeless or fat. People will label you as smart or hardworking because of your financial stability, because of the neighbourhood you live in, or even the car you drive.

You will be labelled as beautiful because you meet the societal standards of beauty (slim). You will be labelled as ugly because you are fat.

People will label you as promiscuous because, in your quest for a relationship that makes you happy, you took longer than others, you broke many hearts and your heart was broken as well.

Unfortunately, some of us kiss many frogs before we find the “one”. It is our right, as long as we are true to others and true to ourselves.

“The problem with labels is that they lead to stereotypes and stereotypes lead to generalizations and generalizations lead to assumptions and assumptions lead back to stereotypes. It’s a vicious cycle, and after you go around and around a bunch of times you end up believing that all vegans