This pass fall, I did a tabling event for Dandelion Revolution Press at a women’s festival. It had a lot of women vendors and benefited a local women’s shelter.
There was a woman there selling beautiful jewelry that was meant to be fidgeted and played with. Her business was called Playthings Studio. I was immediately drawn to a pair of large, drop-down gold and black earrings. This exact pair! The black part can spin around, which is very fun and, for someone who fidgets a lot with her jewelry, very satisfying.
I told the woman how much I love earrings, especially big, bold earrings like this pair. She said:
“You’d be surprised how many women say they wish they could wear big earrings like this. They say they’re not that kind of woman – you know, the one who wears big earrings.
So I tell them – buy them! Wear them! Then you are that kind of woman. The one who wears big earrings. Simple as that.”
So, of course, I bought them.
But that actually got me thinking so much about identity. We say we are these things, these labels, and then we have to keep it up, so as to not feel like a fraud to others. To ourselves.
–> “I’m a neat freak.”
–> “I’m a health nut.”
–> I’m a runner.”
–> “I’m a top student.”
–> “I’m a night owl.”
–> “I’m a huge reader.”
These labels hep bring some sense to our days. A routine, an excuse, a path.
The health nut has an easier time saying no to dessert because they, and everyone around them, knows that they’re a health nut.
The night owl would never even consider going to sleep until after midnight, not even if their eyelids become heavy at 10pm, because they’re a night owl and this is what they do. This is what they know.
The runner has an easier time blocking out an hour of their day to go for a run vs. those who don’t label themselves as a runner.
The reader has an easier time opening the book before bed vs. those who don’t label themselves as a reader.
The top student has an easier time studying on the weekend vs. those who don’t label themselves as a top student.
It makes me wonder how easy or different it’d be to slap some new, positive labels onto myself. And as I’m posting this around New Years, I can bet a lot of other people are wondering that too. Maybe this is a part of self-growth… landing on a label you want and pursuing it until you and everyone around you sees it as part of your personality. I don’t think it’s as easy as putting on big earrings… but it might be.
I think it is consistency. Day after day, choosing what you want, until eventually, it’s subconscious. You don’t have to think of the earrings you want to wear – you just grab them.