I am amazed every time I turn around there seems to be a new way to label humankind.
According to DISC (a fairly old personality profiler), yours truly, is a high I and secondary D. My MBTI says I’m a ENFP which means I like to talk, intuit, feel, and perceive stuff. My explanatory style is barely optimistic, but my hope score is thru the roof. Not sure what that one means. I love my strengthsfinder results. They labeled me as an activator, command, learner, woo, and relator. This was version 1.0. When I recently took it for the second time, seems my wiring disconnected woo, relator and command and quickly rewired strategic, maximizer, and belief. My IQ test is 140 which is much better than my college label of 3.0. Simon Baron-Cohen has a great test to label your right/left brainedness. Turns out I’m off the chart empathetic but my systems thinking leaves much to be desired. I could go on. I’ll stop.
I believe, we love to label our teams, our children, our parents,our neighbors, and ourselves because it’s so much easier than getting to know who they really are and who we really are! We love to rush to judge and getting all these labels just makes the job easier. I don’t come with a simple label and you don’t either. I’m done trying to label my family, friends, and clients. My son, Jordan, has taught me the futility of the effort. He cannot be boxed in. Forget your labels, friend. Do you know your identities, the names you call you? Have you spent time alone reflecting, thinking, and writing or are you too busy running? Until you know who you are it doesn’t make much sense adding all these tag lines. Slow down and reflect.
Go to your room. Invest time alone figuring out your “I am’s,” if you will. Your I am’s are your identities, the second element of your BTL six pack. Worldview, Identities, Principles (WIP) are always a work in process and the first three elements of your six pack. Have you built yours? Have you given them a hard rinse with truth tellers and loved ones? Are you inviting others in to illuminate blindspots? Good. Then, as you take your strengthsfinders label and countless other good ones, you’ll have a strong internal matrix, your BTL core, to run ’em through.
Here’s my labeling of me. These are some of my identities, some of the names I call myself.
I’m a Christian sinner, crazy facilitator, and builder of better humans. I am a liberal republican/conservative democrat, lunatic/independent. I am a loyal and loving husband, lousy romantic, impatient/loving father, thinker, feeler, silly, laid back and flat out. I am a cyclist, runner (new one), core fitness freak, and recreational golfer. I am a healthy eater who loves Missi’s pie and Third and Holllywood pecan pie sundaes. I am a reader, writer, and a tree hugger who loves Porsches. I am inconsistently considerate if I like you, high on empathy (hard for many to believe) and low on execution. I am clear, concise, and direct. I am a man who can quickly find the melody line and miss a million little details. I am confident and convicted in my pursuit of mastery and don’t suffer fools easily. I am best in small groups and do not enjoy networking at all. I am a great friend to a few, not so good at staying attached to acquaintances. I am someone who loves playing with fire as long as I’m the one with the matches. I am a truth teller, still working on hearing more. I am a man who works in jeans and loves to wake up dead people. I’m weird and I care, but not that much. I could go on. I’ll stop.
How do you label you? And, more importantly what are the names you call you? Stop allowing other systems and people to define you. Slow down and go to your room. Ask God for help. You do not belong in a box. You are a beautiful mess just like all of us. Your “I am’s” are yours to author and help you make peace with your place. There’s a great identity for us all, isn’t it? I am a man making peace with my place. How ‘bout you? Good.
Live hard. Love harder (Thanks, Teeks)…