What labels do you wear?
Many years ago, I was an elementary school teacher. I taught a wonderful class of second graders. Each day, I felt inspired and truly loved my work.
In this particular class, I had a student named Jan. He came from a family of 8 children. To say the least, his home was always filled with activity and he was often left to fend for himself. Though his parents loved him dearly, their life was stretched!
During class time, Jan would often drift off and daydream. He had much trouble focusing and hence his grades suffered. He was only 8 years old! At the end of our first quarter, we (the parents, principal and myself) decided to have some assessments done. A psychologist administered the tests and brought her findings to all of us. She told the family, that Jan was challenged and slow; Jan was going to have challenges reading and doing logical processes; Jan’s family should consider directing towards programs that lead him into careers where he could ‘use his hands’. I was amazed that one test could predict Jan’s life with such precision.
Imagine the effects that it could have on someone like Einstein who didn’t speak until he was four and also did not read until seven. His teachers viewed him as mentally challenged and anti-social. I am not sure what happened to Jan, but I know his family decided to reject the findings. We decided, as a team, to support him, especially by giving him time to feel valued- in the class and at home. He slowly but surely began to flourish.
In our lives, we need to be careful of the labels we put on others and ourselves. Each day, when I awake I have a choice. So do you! What do you label yourself?
Look at these two columns: I invite you to take time to read the words-and really feel them.
|Stupid, slow, dumb||Smart, capable, intelligent|
|Ugly, Fat, too thin, plain||Beautiful, healthy, unique, sexy|
|Old, incapable, stuck,||Young, capable, motivated|
|Fearful, naive, limited, disappointed||Fearless, faithful, trusting, passionate|
Which is more inviting and inspiring? Do any fit the labels you put on yourself? Think of your own list… does it work for you?
When I label myself- I also begin to create an army of excuses to justify my labels. I say things like: I am too old. Maybe tomorrow! I have not the skills or ability. People may laugh at me so forget it! Or my favorite- I don’t know what I want to do. So, guess what I don’t try anything. On and on… we go!
Have you told yourself things that keep you from shining? What would it take for you to just go for all the gold – the joy, peace, and passion– whatever you see as your gifts?
Create a plan and implement the realness of your genuine desires.
with love, Lorraine
P.S: A few people who have inspired and changed the world!