Recently I’ve been enjoying my explorations of crazy. Diving into the depths of my insanity and using it to harness new levels of creativity. 

It’s been interesting to see the response from people. How different people use different labels to describe my actions.

I’ve had some people reach out to me and tell me I’m “courageous”. That I show a lot of “vulnerability.”

Others see what I’ve been doing and think I’ve gone “crazy” or “insane”.

Others still might say it is “insightful” or “actionable” for those who want to do the same in their own lives.

Depending on where your perspectives lie, the labels you would use on me would differ.

I find labels funny, because labels are closely linked with our sense of identity. 

Say a word that feels aligned with the identity I’ve tried to construct for the world and I’ll feel good about myself.

Say a word that challenges or refutes my sense of identity and I’ll feel attacked or judged.

Our identity is really just a story that we tell ourselves about who we are, what we do, and what our place in the world is.

But this identity is also closely linked to ego – the ego gets very defensive when it feels attacked.

For example I once had a friend ask if I was autistic or bipolar.

At the time I was offended.

Why?

I was afraid of the label. 

I was afraid to be labeled as something I didn’t feel that I was.

Afraid of being put into a bucket I didn’t belong to.

In reality? It’s the defense of the ego.

My ego felt like it was being attacked.

My ego went into defense mode.

The reality is – maybe I am bipolar or autistic – but does that change anything?

FUCK NO!

If I am, I’m functional as shit. I live productive days, feel great, and I’m a genuinely happy person.

The label doesn’t change anything about me. It’s just a word that other people can use to describe how I am. 

The labels that people use to describe me aren’t of importance to me. 
The labels I use to describe MYSELF are what are important to me. 

My own opinion of myself. How proud I make myself. How I impress myself. The labels I use to judge my own behavior. 

I feel like I’ve been through so many labels in my short existence.
“Traveler”, “English Teacher”, “Entrepreneur”, and now my favorite “crazy”.

All different labels for the external world to try and help people contextualize where I am in life and what it is that I am doing. 

All to help give people a semblance of understanding.

But internally the labels I’ve used to describe myself haven’t changed. How I think about myself, how I judge myself, how I reflect and refine has remained steady.

I don’t associate my identity, my sense of character or being, with the labels that the outside world uses to try and understand my life. 

Having said that – we can take our external identity in our own hands. We can choose to project a certain message into the world. To be intentional with the way that the world perceives us. 

For example, I WANT people to think I’m crazy. To see my videos and be uncomfortable. To provoke thought and questions in other people about how they live their own lives. I want to be the topic on their brain. 
Some people will see the deeper message. Some people will see the pattern and piece it together on their own.

and be uncomfortable. To provoke thought and questions in other people about how they live their own lives. I want to be the topic on their brain. 
Some people will see the deeper message. Some people will see the pattern and piece it together on their own.

Others will have their own opinions. The message isn’t meant for everyone.
But that took intentional crafted projection in order to get that message across. 

The contrary? You can let the world judge you. You can let the world define you, label you, and place you into buckets you didn’t want to be a part of. 

Either way the world is going to judge and label, so I believe you have to beat them to the punch. You must define your own sense of identity ON YOUR OWN. Be proud of yourself from within. Use positive labels to describe yourself. Do your best to project a positive image onto the world. 

Because if you don’t, the world will pin labels on you, and your sense of identity will be based on how the outside world perceives you, rather than how you view yourself. 

How we label ourselves is more important than how the world labels us, just make sure you aren’t using the labels the world has for you to define who you think you are 😉 

Take this into your hands right now. Write down five positive labels to describe yourself. Five reasons to be proud of who you are. Five reasons why you love yourself. Define the type of person you are. 

Now share them in the comments below for the world to see and let’s rejoice in shared positive identities! 


Also published on Medium.

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