• Resilient Practice

Shining your Inner Light

Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart – Khalil Gibran

We all have our own individual model of the world. It is the unique lens through which we see life and it is formed using information from our upbringing, life experiences and genetic makeup. It is the way that we make sense of the world and everything that happens to us.

There are as many versions of this as there are people. It is the framework from which we can properly assess how to act in all situations. We need it for survival. To compliment this framework of understanding, from the moment we are born, we seek a sense of Self. To interact appropriately in this world that we have created, we need to know who we are.

How do we do this?

We do it by accepting the labels given to us by others and by creating them for ourselves.

As children we are hardwired to survive. This means that we must act in a way that gains approval rather than rejection. Rejection and ultimately abandonment are synonymous with death to a helpless child. Approval is the opposite and may come in the form of many different kinds of attention. For example, love, praise, delight and expressions of pride.

To a child, any attention is better than none, so negative attention can also shape our sense of Self.

As children we are most likely to willingly adopt any label that brings us a positive response such as ‘clever’ or ’caring.’ It is seen to increase our chance of survival.

We also take on negative labels such as ‘lazy’ or naughty.’ This happens when we have formed a negative core belief about the Self and the label supports it.

The two most common core beliefs are ‘I am not good enough’ or ‘I am broken or not whole.’ Perhaps we create negative core beliefs to help us to process negative experiences.

Perhaps we are seeking to improve on the current model of Self and so we turn our internal Judge inward.

Whatever the reason, it is clear that adopting a negative label is likely to create an obstacle to moving forwards in that area of our life.

The fact is however, that all labels, whether positive or negative seek to define us and therefore box us in and can stop us from reaching our full potential. This is because, in order to wear the label and preserve our safety, we must adopt the appropriate behavioural characteristics to fit. When we unconsciously do this, the label becomes part of our personality. Those around us observe that unconscious behaviour and it defines us with them too, thus the label is cemented in.

Try this

Before enjoying the meditation below, we suggest that you make a list of all the roles that you play or have ever played within your lifetime. Every relationship and life event will have left you with labels that you wear unconsciously and that influence who you are today. Include also, all of the words that you and others use to describe your personality. Be thorough, detailed, and honest. Make your list completely individual to you. No-one else needs to see it.

Now, remember that every single one of these is a choice.

You do not have to be defined by your experiences. Every experience has something to teach you about your own ability to survive but you do not have to wear any label that you do not choose to wear. Your labels speak about you to the world and its people and they, in turn respond.

Let’s meditate:

Sticky Labels

Begin as always by taking your awareness to your breathing

The tidal in and out of your breath

Its rhythmical quality

The ebb

And Flow

As you become more

And more relaxed

Now allow the outbreath

To become just a little bit longer than

The inbreath

Slow and steady

Deeply relaxed


Know that at the moment that you came into being

You were a spark of pure divine light




Before your emergence

Your appearance

To the rest of the world

You floated




A onetime only

Never to be repeated


There was no name

Or gender

For others to speak of

No personality

Or character

You were not yet a child

A son

Or a daughter

You were totally undefined

And without labels

You could not be described

As you floated

In bliss

A spark of pure, divine light


Throughout life

You have allowed yourself to become

From the earliest time

You have taken on the labels

And roles that have been given to you

They made it easier

To understand who you were


















You know them all

Your own specific labels

You have given them to yourself too

Think of all the words you use to describe yourself

As well as the words that others use to describe you












What labels have you willingly accepted

Or actively worn

As you were becoming?

To set yourself apart

Or simply to fit in?


See yourself wearing every label

See each one as a sticky paper note

Just like the little reminders

That you post to yourself

So that you don’t forget something

See them covering your body

Each one representing a label

Or role that you have allowed yourself to wear

In this lifetime

Throughout your life

You have collected them

Some are very old

And some are recent

Some were given and accepted

And some you took to wear for yourself

Some cause discomfort

And some are worn with pride

But they cover you

From head to toe

And make it difficult for others to see your truth

They create a distorted image

Of that divine light

That you are

Look at yourself

Wearing all those labels

And know

That this is how others see you

It is the version of you

That is presented to the world

If you wear the label of ‘people pleaser’

People will know

Because you wear it on your sleeve

They know that they can ask

Look at all your labels

What kind of interaction

Do they sign you up for?


These labels are not who you are

They are who you have agreed that you are

For whatever reason

Because it suited you at the time

You took the label and agreed to wear it

They are not who you are

They are only roles that you have been playing up to now

And they can be changed

Now you can begin to work at the labels

Peeling away the ones that you no longer need

And discarding them

Some will come away easily

And some will stick a little faster

Even if you know that you want to be free of them

Examine your attachments here

What keeps you in this role





What do you have to lose from being free of it

You may not be able to remove all of the labels in one go

Some, you may not wish to remove at all

And that’s fine

It’s your journey

When you have finished

Look at yourself again

Now you see that bright, pure, iridescent light

That is your own true nature

Shining out into the world

For everyone to see

Now imagine roots like those of a tree

Reaching down into the soil

Connecting you with the Earth

You are made from her

She is over four billion years old and so are you

Now imagine a silver threat rising from the top of your head

And reaching up into the Cosmos

You are a part of the Universe and everything in it

You are connected

There is no losing or running out of energy

It is in plentiful Supply

You simply draw it up

From the Earth

Through the soles of your feet

Or down from the Cosmos

Through the top of your head

Via a beautiful silver thread

Now as you come back to full awareness

Take with you the beautiful

Unique force

Of your own

Pure divine light

And let it shine

Out into the world

So that People know

Who you are

89 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All