By Jamie Kirk
There are lots of designers out there in the fashion houses. There are so many types of ice cream. There are gazillion types of automobiles. There are several brands of coffee and teas. What would happen if we removed all the labels and didn’t read anything about our purchases? How would that work if we didn’t have an expectation of what we purchased, ate or drank?
The same questions as above exist related to people. What if we allowed people just to be? What if we allowed people to not come with a warning label (meaning social media, friends who know them, or the ever popular google search)? What if we didn’t have preconceived ideas about what the person drove, where they lived or how much money they made? What if we didn’t expect the person to be dominant or submissive or a combo of both? What would happen if we stripped off the labels?
I think what would happen is that we would be surprised at how uniquely different and interesting people could be if we just allowed them to BE. Removing the label equates to freedom and individuality. Labeling someone or something limits them to our perception of them, which is most often wrong. Ripping off the label provides the person a springboard actually to exceed your expectations.
We all want to have people in our life that are authentic and have the liberty to be themselves. People that can share with us when they feel weak, unsupported or sad. It is important and even necessary that our friends and family don’t feel judgement on days when they are not their best selves. Those close to us should be able to be vulnerable when necessary. Our friend groups and close family members should be emotionally naked with us and not feel repercussions when they share information with us that may not shed them in the best light.
That is why it is such a win-win when we celebrate one another in our most raw form. A form that may not have on makeup, might not have six-pack abs, could be non-degreed, big-boned, manic, bi-polar, addicted, or whatever. Each of us has the responsibility not to expect anyone to meet expectations that we have deemed appropriate. Expectations that look and feel like something we would do. Expectations of them based solely on what we had imagined them to be like. Ripping off the label is the first step.
As I mentioned earlier, removing the label is a weight lifted for all. Celebrating individuality can kick-start a new friendship or relationship in the right direction. The same holds true for existing relationships. People change minute by minute. We experience different emotions in a 24-hour period and to focus on one or two of those “expected” emotions or attributes is wrong. People should be allowed to think and behave as they see fit. Having to succumb to a label or a title is exhausting. Being someone we are not, or someone we are struggling to become un-naturally can cause us to become sick; emotionally, mentally and physically.
The next time you want to label someone as a Top, Bottom, Bear, Twink, Rich, Lonely, Bitter, Happy, sit back and ask yourself “Is this accurate? Would the person be offended if they knew what my private thoughts are? What if I am wrong ?” Your answers to these questions should properly guide you and help you settle into a more thoughtful visualization of the person in your presence. Celebrating one another should come without a disclaimer. The ability to see someone at face value should not be challenging. It should be welcoming. And by welcoming, I mean just that – opening your arms and heart to everyone and everything you met; just as they are.