• Hey Black Girl

4 Ways to Overcome Labels and Walk in your Identity

Aisha Freeman | MSci


Has anyone ever made you feel as if you had to be perfect? As if your best wasn’t good enough? Well if you haven’t before, I hope you never have to experience this. In my case, however, this has happened to me far too often. 


Growing up, I was labeled—not necessarily in a bad way, but I was labeled. I was labeled as the girl with the parents that work in the hospital, the girl that must be a doctor because her dad is a doctor, and the girl that is super smart just because of these labels. Of course, we want to be great like our parents, or even to achieve things that our parents couldn’t imagine. However, in my eyes, a label is just a label. No matter good or bad, no one wants to be categorized, placed in a box, or justified by someone else's standards of who or what they should be. So, to challenge everyone, I decided to break those labels.


No matter good or bad, no one wants to be categorized, placed in a box, or justified by someone else's standards of who or what they should be.

Now, don’t get me wrong; if you have a dream that falls under a label that someone has given you, that's okay. However, don’t let that label someone has placed on you limit your dream. Here are 4 ways to overcome labels and walk in your identity:


  • Be Goal Oriented. First things first, know your goals. Goals are the gatekeepers to our dreams and the guiding light within our visions. By setting goals you are laying out the foundation needed for you to overcome labels because you know what you want and know the steps it will take to get there. 

  • Be Confident. Once you have your goals aligned, the next step is boosting your confidence. I’ve witnessed countless number of people with dreams but don’t have the confidence it takes to get there. Confidence is the ability to believe how successful you will be. If you believe in the goals and dreams that you have set for yourself, you must remain confident until they happen.

  • Be Honest. When we talk about breaking labels and walking in our purpose, it is only right that we talk about honesty. The truth is, when you are breaking labels you must be honest with yourself about who set them and how they were set. As I mentioned earlier all labels aren’t bad, but we can not limit ourselves based on other standards or expectations. You have the right to create what is best for you and you must be honest with yourself about what you want and when you want it.

  • Be Happy. Finally, when breaking labels and walking in your own identity above everything else, know what makes you happy. At times we tend to get caught up in what makes other people happy, but the time is now to focus on being happy for ‘you’. As you continue to overcome labels and find out what’s best for you don’t forget that this process will not happen overnight, but it is a continuous journey.


When you are breaking labels you must be honest with yourself about who set them and how they were set.

Sometimes in life, people will put expectations on you that they expect you to have for yourself and letting them down is usually not the easiest thing to do. However, I believe that you can break these labels and walk fearlessly into who you are.



(Source: Vogue Spain)




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