What Name Do You Call Yourself?

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To have that sense of one’s intrinsic worth, which constitutes self-respect,

is potentially to have everything.

Joan Didion

 

 

I don’t know my paternal grandfather’s first name. His birth certificate says, “John”, but his baptismal certificate says, “James” while his death certificate says, “Joseph.”

 

He was thirty-three when he died and my father, his son, was just seven. Oddly, my father never could recall his father’s name and nor could my grandmother, even though she’d been married to the man!

 

The “JP” of my name stands for “Joseph Patrick.”

 

I’m named after my father, but my mother hated both names. My dad insisted, though, that I be named after him. However, he never called me “JP.”

 

He called me “Bobby.” Lambs were painted on my crib and because a lamb goes “bah-bah,” he called me “BaBa” when I was growing up. In high school, he slurred it into “Bobby.”

I come from a family that doesn’t have strong loyalty to names!

 

Yet, there is power to a name.

 

Recently, Roxanne, a new client, came to me distraught – she’s been out of work for several years and feels hopeless.

 

She said, “I don’t know any more who I am.  I’ve lost my dream and I don’t know how to get it back.”

 

I asked her to tell me who she had been before she lost her job.

 

Agitated, she said that she couldn’t remember.

 

And then, she poignantly muttered, “I don’t know if I really ever had a sense of ‘me’.”  She went on to say, “I’m a loser.”

 

I’m coaching Ron, another client, in public speaking. He’s intelligent, accomplished, respected and valued as a professional resource by his peers.

 

He downplays that reality by maintaining, “I am a fraud.”

 

When he speaks, he talks fast because he doesn’t think he’s worthy of people’s attention.  He’s afraid that people will see him for the imposter that he believes he is.

 

I think it’s easy for a person to lose sight of who they are – of who they once wanted to be – and of who they could become.

 

The TV private eye Remington Steele famously claimed, “I am who I believe myself to be.”

 

Whether you’re a fictional character or a real person, I think that belief influences just about everything in a person’s life!

 

Roxanne believes she’s a “loser” and Ron thinks he’s a “fraud.”

 

I know, though, that she’s not a loser and he’s not a fraud.

Yet, they insist on labeling themselves with names that don’t accurately reflect the reality of who they are.

 

Motivational guru Brian Tracy urges people to,

“Never say anything about yourself you do not want to come true.”

 

What name do you give yourself?

Who do you believe yourself to be?

Is it a belief that gives you life or that sabotages your life?

 

Do you want to break through the negative thinking that is preventing you from being influential and heard?

To explore how one-on-one communication skills coaching can help you present you with enhanced confidence,

contact me at:

  [email protected]

818-415-8115

 

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