I heard the word labels so many times in so many different contexts so much every day. People talk about designer labels, relationship labels, personality labels, etc. Why do we need them?
On this blog, I talk a lot about being an introvert and I have labeled myself as such. I will admit I feels some type of pride in being in the introvert tribe. I feel it because it makes me part of a group without working on developing the social capital that it takes to be a part of any other group. I can just declare it. It does give me a shared sense of identity and validation. Although I love being considered unique and individual, there is a part of me that wants to be part of a collective with similar tendencies and propensities. Then I began to ask myself why am I quick to run from many other labels.
When I was in college, I was totally against joining a sorority because I felt I didn’t need to be a part of a group to feel accepted or special in any sort of way. As I got older and changed may major to English, I was thankful to have “found my tribe”. Being a part of this group seemed to be more acceptable in my eyes. I want to take some time to examine why that is.
I believe joining a group like a sorority would be forced. I was would be choosing a sorority based on what? Then there was the fact that my acceptance into this group was at the whim of others. I had to be deemed worthy to be a part of this group. Not only that, sororities have certain attributes associated with them. Membership is based on exclusivity. It isn’t something that happens organically like my tribe of English majors.
As many who know me are well aware, I love quality and things that are well-made. It is not about a designer label for me, but sometimes the designer item is very well made. When I buy things I tend to keep them until the disintegrate, so it is important for me to buy high quality things that I will use often and keep for a long time. Even when I purchased a designer item, I chose something that was understated and without the designer logo plastered conspicuously all over it. I don’t like those kind of labels either. It is not important for anyone to know how much I spent on an item or what particular brand of item I own, or that I own a designer item. I’m not sure if it is the aversion to pretention or the need to not draw attention to myself. I do believe it is a combination of both.