The Art Of Not Labeling Yourself

We came back from the weekend in the Rocky Mountains a few days ago, and perhaps that clear air, magnificent scenery and kayaking contributed to my cheerful spirits and the flow of inspiration that I merely had to grasp and use for the good cause. I thought and went through my notes of the trip if they were worth the story for the blog, yet they needed deeper musings and revision before they would come together in a story. Therefore, I’ve put all inspiration and effort into the topic that had been on my mind for the last few years, but it is only now I realized its importance, and readiness to be spoken out. 


Reflecting on different phases of my life, I see dissatisfaction in my actions through years when I was experiencing stagnation, whether it be in style or choices in more significant decisions. I had noticed how dull, artless and experience-less my days were as soon as I was proud of belonging to a certain title, in my case also, to a certain style. Either, I chose silhouettes too feminine and marched streets on high heels, or I threw myself into a casualty of sport but not chic attires. College was the time of my devotional praise of Blair Waldorf's style, as well as fashion of the ’30s and ’60s. Right after that working in a fashion house seeing how ridiculous were ruffles, skirts, fitted coats, that exaggerated elegance through daily bases, I went the opposite way, found out about minimalism and bought my first pair of white leather sneakers.  Minimalism, and here I speak of that strict assembly of laws and rules, were my fellow companions for a short amount of time as the boredom of it was almost unbearable after a few months. There, at the intersection of two labels I previously was proud to assign to myself, I stood perplexed. The obtrusive feeling of chasing a new self, of discovering other forms of fashion art, or pursuing nouveau mode was in every vexed glance I gave myself in the mirror. It was one problem. Another problem that stood beyond self-expression through clothes was about actual splitting with the label, and that entailed neither knowing what to wear in the morning nor how to act. That was the time the critical discovery started; there was no particular label I could identify myself with, no particular life and style I could belong to through the years and years to come. Under no circumstances, I would want to judge those who live devotionally to one particular style, be it in art, clothing, or interior. I also would not want to bring this comparison to the most valuable beliefs. And even though, if one experiences a lack of wonder and growth in faith, such faith loses its power. Therefore, I’ve discovered the needlessness of assigning myself to one specific style and started the search for substitution of that fabricated comfort of belonging to a specific group.

I believe that the charismatic, unique personality those attractive traits we admire or secretly envy in another person, was developed and built up under the influence of a combination of interests, ideas and activities. One’s style is much more intriguing when it is mixed. One’s house tells more appealing stories of the owner if it contains, not clutter, but meaningful trophies, and thoughtfully chosen items. One’s character blooms in the environment of experiments, failures and achievements in various areas. After all, self-labelling deprives one of the possibilities to expand and perhaps to discover better options that would also make more meaningful sense for one’s life, than habitual labels did at first. 

It fascinates me of how much can be discovered in the same mountains. It has been my second year of living in Alberta, and quite frequently, my husband and I pack and head to the Rockies. I’ve seen them in all four seasons. I’ve hiked a few peaks and noticed what occasional tourists do not observe. Yet, I suppose there would be no discoveries if I would expect precise attraction; there would be no genuine adoration and desire to explore more if I would assign a certain label to myself as a viewer, and to the scenery as a presenter. Anyhow, I truly hope you get the point. This idea of labelling all and everyone, including yourself, leads to the list of rules we create, mostly unnecessary, that prevent exciting findings. In the years of my obsession with labelling myself, thus following only classic elegant style, I used to proclaim my unwillingness to ever wear runners in the same outfit with a classic double-breasted coat. Guess what I wear now from autumn to spring? Yes, those notorious runners along with a coat; and believe me, they can look as elegant as high heels, it is all about expanded views of my perception.