What’s in a Name?

Have you ever noticed how nice it is when someone uses your name?

I started thinking about this while replying to a comment on my Commenting post.   I was recalling the day only a few weeks ago when I was at the bank making a deposit.  The teller was doing the transaction at a computer away from the front desk, and when she brought me back my receipt, she wished me a good day and called me by my first name.

Now, I don’t know the young woman, although I do make regular use of that bank, and I’m sure she had gotten the name off my deposit slip or checks.  But it meant so much to me to have her use my name that I was smiling all the rest of the morning and into the afternoon.  I can still feel the warmth that one little word generated now, weeks later.

I noticed at church several years ago that it felt so much nicer when other people greeted me by name, so I decided to follow suit and use names whenever I could.  I’ve carried that into my workplace, and amongst my friends as much as possible.

I also try to make a point to put my correspondent’s name in emails.  Even a two line email can feel so much more personal when headed with your name!  Sure, they know who they are, but names are special, and I don’t think we can call each other by them too often.

Granted, you want to use the name in a good way.  I know people who hate their name, or their full name, because they were always called by the full name when they were in trouble.  My mother hated that, so she never did it to me or my siblings.  I love my name, and it is always nice when someone calls me by it.

I know, I know, you would!  But I don’t use my real name on the blog, so how can you?  I chose to write this blog under a pseudonym for security reasons, but that doesn’t mean you can’t call me by the pseudonym!  A few of you have, and I appreciate it.

What I’d really like to encourage you all to do is to call your friends, co-workers, and family by their names more often.  If you already do it on a regular basis, maybe there’s something else you can do to show that little bit of support, like smiling or giving them a compliment.  There’s always something more we can be doing to encourage people.  And who better to do that for than the people in your sphere of family and friends?  Or maybe you can take it beyond your own little circle and call the sales people who help you by their name.  That’s what their name tags are for, you know!

So go ahead, say good morning to someone and address it to them specifically by calling them by name.  See how many extra large smiles you get back.  Maybe someone else will catch on and start using your name too!

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2 Comments on “What’s in a Name?”

  1. a.w. marks Says:

    Home School Graduate,

    What’s comical about this post is that last night while replying to your comment, I was wondering how to address you by name. I love it myself; I considered using “HSG,” then decided against it because I didn’t want to sound dumb.

    So in a completely unintentional, unrelated, and silly way, God once again convinced me to ignore my insecurities, because they’re usually based on some elementary pride. Your timing was ridiculous 🙂


    • Anthony,
      I usually try to address my comments to the blogger, but sometimes I have to hunt around and find out how other commenters are addressing him or her, or how they sign themselves in their own comments. Sometimes that’s easier than others!

      My timing is only so-so, but God manages to redeem it anyhow! He’s pretty amazing at that . . .

      I almost posted this last night, but had something else I was working on and left the post for today, otherwise you might have seen it sooner. 🙂

      Hmm. I wouldn’t know anything about insecurities myself . . . okay, so I do a lot of things, or rather don’t do a lot of things because I’m not sure how they will be taken. And you’re very right that we’re only protecting our pride. I’m learning, however, that it’s just as easy to laugh at myself, and that people are generally willing to laugh with me instead of at me.

      ~Homeschool Graduate

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