Blogpost, self-reliance

What’s In a Name?

Recently I met a new friend who by her estimation has a very “feminine” name and has always lamented it. As an athlete, she wanted to have a name that was more unisex or possibly even “tougher”. On the one hand, I see her point. Around the time that my kids were born, I lobbied for the name Cuauhtemoc, half-heartedly. It was the name of the last Aztec king who revolted against the Spanish. Almost the reverse concept of Johnny Cash song, “A Boy Named Sue”, my hope was that a name might add to my child’s identity. Alas, I didn’t follow through with it but I did choose not to make my son the fourth in line of Peters.

With all of that said, there is something about a name that establishes a partial identity. I can’t say definitively but Einstein may have ended up differently if his name had been Hercules. Much like DNA, a name can set the wheels in motion toward particular traits. However it is far from complete. The individual must express those traits regularly. A person is not destined to a particular life based solely on their name.

So my friend can take heart. A name is only part of the story, each of us must define ourselves through our actions on a regular basis. It’s possible to be a badass without being named, Attila the Hun. Although it may help, Attila made his name memorable. The same is true for any of us. There was a time when Elon Musk had almost no meaning to anyone but him and family/friends. Your name is important but most of the meaning is what you put into it!

Live up to your name, or make your name moniker for greatness!


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