Photo by Brett Jordan on

Labels help us make sense of the world by aggregating people, traits, groups, and activity into chunks. We can then ‘file’ these chunks more easily.

Last week I saw this report from King’s College London and, as I’m prone to do, started categorising my family and friends into the three categories.

Which is, of course, entirely wrong.

I didn’t label myself because I’m all three of the categories. Depending on the time, day, weather or if I’m in a good mood or not I might be accepting, resistant or suffering. Labels like the ones in the report help us make sense of the world, but they’re a blunt tool if you build your world around them.

Labels can guide, they don’t instruct.

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