A Rose By Any Other Name

Would smell as sweet – and remind me of my library!

What name do you respond to? What name do you use for others? Do you make an effort to use the right name?

Everyone has a preference, a fear, and a comfort zone.

Can you afford to call someone by anything other than his or her preferred moniker?


How we respond

I’m the youngest of six, and have relatively loose standards… Steve or Steven are both perfectly fine. Mr. Tylock has its place, though I tend to use that only around children and hear that more often when checking into a hotel…

I’d rather not be called “Jim”. You see growing up I would often get called Jim or Bill, the names of my two older brothers…

And I respect that others have their own preferences – first borns often prefer their complete name, and are about the only ones to use their middle name or initial.

What we’re afraid of being called…

Everyone has fears to some extent – including those names people call us that make us cringe. With some people, their name is closely tied to their identity, and any deviation feels unnatural and disorienting.

Then there are other people, myself included, that have endured so much name abuse that we’re happy when someone uses something close…-)

[You can include me in that group also… not many get “Ciappetta” right. I stopped correcting people if they come close :) -ed. ]

Some of the different fears include:

  • When used casually, one won’t be taken as a significant player
  • That others will misspell or mispronounce the name
  • Someone will use the wrong name
  • One won’t build authority or status with a casual name
  • That you’ll forget someone’s name before you learn it

And I’m sure there are others – who likes to be called something other than their name?

Comfort zones

I came to understand some of this “name use” theory by reading Kevin Leman’s “The New Birth Order Book: Why you are the way you are”.

The book does a remarkable job of laying out common family dynamics and how they help shape an individual’s preferences.

And while I share many characteristics of a youngest born, the unique things that make me “me” come from all over the place.

And here’s where you can go astray – no matter what you’re called, or what you like being called, can you afford to take someone else out of their comfort zone and call them anything other than their preferred name?

I think not…

The Library

It’s a bit of a circular reference, but as I planned to talk about this issue I knew I wrote an article about the book a couple years back, and went to look it up on the TimelyInsights.net archives. Before I could find it, I had to look through all of the articles I’ve written about books I’ve read … then it seemed a shame not to include them;-)

From where you are to where you want to be

So – if you’d like to read my review of “The New Birth Order Book”, I’m including it below. The other books I’ve reviewed are also pretty good ones, so I’ve tagged them here as well.

Birth Order: First, Last, or Middle. – An interesting walk through childhood
Kevin Leman’s – The New Birth Order Book: Why you are the way you are

An Overdue Fine I Don’t Regret
Jack Canfield’s – The Success Principles

An(other) Overdue Fine I Don’t Regret
Robert Cialdini’s – Influence: Science and Practice

Good Book, No Overdue Fine! – Summer reading that can help your revolution…
Guy Kawasaki’s Rules for Revolutionaries

Networking at the Frog Pond
Darcy Rezac’s – The Frog and Prince

Succeed by Becoming a Category of One – Joe Calloway’s depiction of extraordinary success
Joe Calloway’s – Becoming a Category of One

Love is the Killer App – Become a Lovecat and give it away
Tim Sanders’ – Love is the Killer App

Enjoy – and keep reading.

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