The Power of a Name




Smart. Loud. Hilarious. Handsome. Cheerful. Pretty. Cool. Kind.

Ugly. Fat. Dumb. Trouble-Maker. Sneaky. Worthless.

What kind of labels were put on you as a kid?

What did your dad or mom call you? Your siblings? Grandparents? Peers?

Maybe they didn't even say them TO your face, but about you within ear shot.

I read an article that said you learn more from what you overhear than what is actually spoken TO you.

My husband KC and I were just talking about this the other night. He has told me that as a child, after his grandmother has passed away, he overheard his mom telling her sisters "Mom never did like KC. She said he was sneaky." KC was 10 when he overheard that, and he never mentioned hearing it to anyone until he told me 30 years ago. Can you imagine? It breaks my heart to even think of it.

Now, at nearly 59 years of age, he's done a lot of work to grow past the way those overheard words made him feel about himself. He wasn't sneaky. He was shy, and had parents who yelled when you did anything wrong. He learned by watching his older brother get in trouble that it was far easier to fly under the radar and not verbalize what you thought or wondered rather than to speak up and be chastised. He created a deeply grooved pattern of doing as much as he could outside of the watching (perceived critical) eyes of others (his work, and trying new things, are two examples.) That’s a hard mindset to overcome. He was little for a very short time, but he’s spent his adult life working to unlearn what he learned in those formative years.

Maybe you can relate, or maybe you are the adult putting names on someone else. I read an interesting article that says what we already know: labels are powerful; both good and bad. When we are able to identify their existence, and intentionally de-tangle our identity from these labels, we want to reprogram our beliefs about who we REALLY were designed by God to be. If you need help doing that get a solid referral to a family counselor and get to the FREEDOM of de-tangling! Life’s too short to believe things that aren’t true!

And if no one has told you lately, or ever:

You are VALUED. You are a person OF VALUE.

You are WORTHY. And you are WORTHY TO BE LOVED.