I’ve just become a Grandad. The little man arrived two weeks early amidst the floods affecting the North of England. All the grandads I spoke to said what a life change experience it would be, but it didn’t happen. I woke up the next morning feeling the same as I did the day before. I started worrying, how should I be feeling and anyway, what do grandads do? Then I read something my daughter put on Facebook. I won’t embarrass her with the quote, but it made me realise I was getting it all wrong. Grandad isn’t a label, its a deep relationship with another human being (albeit a very little one) and their family.
There are lots of labels we give ourselves or have given to us. These labels come with assumptions about how we should think, act or behave. Take manager for example. how does that label shape your thinking and behaviour? If we’re fulfilling a role based on a label, perhaps we’re missing something important and not seeing the person behind the label.