Your only label should be your name

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Your only label should be your name

The students in their respective groups in the morning

The students in their respective groups in the morning

Doe Mai Na

The students in their respective groups in the morning

Doe Mai Na

Doe Mai Na

The students in their respective groups in the morning

Doe Mai Na and Eh Bway Paw

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Walking into the school, one would notice small groups of people bundled up in their own designated corner. Like a society of their own with a leader in the midst of it all. One group would be talking boisterously with their arms flung over each other’s shoulders while in another group, the people would be sitting by the sidelines, quietly observing their surroundings and their peers. Of course, there are those that fall in a category where they could be both loud and brash but quiet and calm at the same time. In order to fill the spectrum from one end to another, there would always be something in the middle to balance it out. To put it simply, people have taken the idea of ‘being different’ to attach certain labels to themselves. In extension, this has caused the world to have labels that are either demeaning, prideful, or even endearing. For example, these labels could be ‘geek’, ‘nerd’, ‘white’, ‘black’ but most of all, people love to label themselves or others as ‘introverts’ and ‘extroverts’. Of course, they sometimes forget that ‘ambiverts’ also exist.

Before the term ‘labeling’ even became a thing, people were already given labels. It went on before the 18th century, maybe even before the American Revolution and before the fall of Rome. It may seem a bit exaggerating to say this, but there are a plethora of evidence to prove this theory if one would open their history books to dig in a little deeper. This trend has been going on for so long that many have even lost the tract of time. This ‘labeling’ is like an imperative part of people. It is something they need and strive for. While some may doubt this claim, there are studies to prove this conjecture such as the “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology” by David Yeager, Rebecca Johnson, Brian Spitzer, Kali Trześniewski, Joseph Powers, and Carol Dweck.

One of the most labels that people use to call themselves are the ‘introvert’, ‘extrovert’, and ‘ambivert’ labels. Even in the school, there are countless number of times when people call themselves one of the three labels mentioned. The term ‘introvert’ is a label used to describe people who are shy and reticent and ‘extrovert’ is used to describe an outgoing and overtly expressive person while ‘ambivert’ is just a combination of both. A survey was conducted by two Journalism students to reveal the misunderstandings that extroverts and introverts seem to have of each other and the damage that labeling yourself and someone else can bring about.

Senior Avery Chamblin expressed her thoughts on what she believes most people misunderstood the most about being an extrovert.  

“They think that we can’t have moments out of the “Spotlight”,” Chamblin said. “It is annoying because people always judge more for extroverts because they are the most open.”

On the contrary, introverts, like extroverts, experience similar prejudices about their conservative and less talkative nature.

That being introverted is by nature not choice. I could very well be just as responsive

and sociable as others, but I choose not to,” an anonymous student said. “Whether not finding reason in talking to certain individuals or lack in will to want to talk to others, that is by choice, not because I have no one to talk to.”

Falling between extroverts and introverts are the ambiverts, those who have a combination of both personalities and traits.

“ I am more of an extrovert but in some cases I can be an introvert so they don’t really balance each other out that much,” Chamblin said. “But I get really uncomfortable with being around people that I feel threaten me in a way.”

Based on the survey, both side were questioned whether they would like to experience what the other side was feeling. Several gave positive reviews while others, not so much.

“Yes, because I want to know how everyone feels so in some way I might be able to help them in the way that they can’t help themselves.,” Chamblin said.

The anonymous student like Chamblin agrees that it would be quite interesting to change perspective.

An extrovert under the spotlight, although I’ve never been one for attention, has its moments of fun and joyous moments while an introvert welcomes you to the life of observation and a “backstage pass” if you will,” the anonymous student said. “ I see a unique, admirable situation and perspective change in both.”

In the midst of these opinions between the differences of being an extrovert and an introvert, many students conveyed their dislike for the labels that the society forced upon them.

“I hate that we have to be classified as something instead of being all different individual people in the same world rather then categorized to have some way to fit in,” Chamblin said.

The labels, in a way, restrict people who want to be more than what society and the people around them deemed them as.

In some way, these labels are idiotic,” freshman Natalie Rahija said. “They simply are just another way to determine where you place on the scale of life. While these could be used in a good way, too many people make stereotypes and trap others in the extrovert/introvert box. There is no correct way to be either one of them.”

To encourage students to rid themselves of these labels Junior Patricia Martinez wrote a note to the students about being themselves as being themselves is more worthwhile then being a doll with a label above their heads.

“Don’t be embarrassed of what the world calls you, you are beautiful in your own skin,” junior Patricia Martinez said.

Being labeled would not be something negative but it’s the way that people present these labels that either determine if they do more than good for humans.

“No one, and I mean no one, should be labeled as anything but themselves because we live in world where calling yourself one thing would mean that we are against another or we want to be a separate entity from others,” said sophomore Doe Mai Na. “ I consider myself as an introvert, but there are times where this label constricts me. I feel suffocated not because of my inability to talk to people, but because of what the society deemed me as and expects me to be. I am sure that most people would rather throw away a label without any feeling of accomplishment than to bend to the will of society.”