What’s in a name?

“…that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet…”

 Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

What is a name? How much weight is in a name? How important is an unusual name? How much does a name influence the way other people react or behave towards you?

 Names can make or break you

When I was younger, I used to feel embarrassed about my name. I would get laughed at on many occasions. This shaped my perception on what an ideal name should be. As I grew older and more confident instead of shying away from people who bullied me, I began to take a stand for myself… and you know what? I felt better for it.

Names can take on different meanings for different people. For most of us, our given names were selected by whoever was responsible for us when we were born (usually parents) If you have eccentric parents, it is probably reflected in your beautiful eccentric name which you probably now have to live with for the rest of your life! Sometimes though unusual names can even make you feel special and unique.

If you have a common name, you may not be proud of it and feel common. Whatever your name is, you are well aware of the procedure to change it legally if you are truly unhappy about it. If you haven’t taken that step, ask yourself why you are living with something that is making you unhappy? Perhaps internally you are not really unhappy about your name. You may have come to accept it. Whatever the reason, remember one thing – you are special and unique on the inside and no amount of unusual or common names can change that.

If you have a simple or straightforward name, you have probably never really paid attention to what people with unusual names have to experience. Perhaps you can think before you judge others based solely on their name. Every time you think about laughing at someone’s unusual name, remember that there is a warm person under that label and you risk hurting their feelings by poking fun at their name. That name represents who they are – so please try to respect it.

Your name is the start of what you stand for so be proud of it. (Of course there are exceptions such as when you wish to remain anonymous when you are in the public domain and therefore use an alias in order to keep your privacy). Underneath that name, you are a beautiful complex being – start by valuing yourself. You are more than a name. If you don’t make a stand for yourself, very few others will come to your rescue.

You are the one who gives your name that special persona – so be proud of yourself. There’s more to you on the inside – you know that well.

Have you ever had to face problems in life because of an unusual name?

Have you experienced people judging you simply because of the name you have?

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