“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose  by any other name would smell as sweet” – William Shakespeare

It’s funny (as in deep, not ha ha) how the little things can mean so much.  I’m told that researchers have found that people tend to live up to the name they are given.

Juliet (as in Romeo and Juliet) made the statement above because she saw the substance of the man beyond the name.  Even so, what happened to both her and her Romeo had less to do with substance and more to do with their names. Names DO matter.

I just finished a conversation with my father.  He’s a poet, a teacher and a philosopher.  He’s also a great father.  I visited him earlier this year on Father’s day and realised how impactful he has been on my life and the lives of countless others.

Although I didn’t see him between 1972 and 1979 after my parents divorced, his ‘legacy’ continued to guide me and shape me through the sterling reputation that he left for me in his absence.

I remember being told “you are just like your father” and “your father is such a good man.”  There were people who felt compelled to help me just because of who my father is and the reputation of my family.  This gave me something not only to enjoy, but it also provided me with something far more valuable…..  something to uphold.

My father  has given me many things, from my ‘apple cheeks’ to a dry sense of humor.  He gave me a name…. not just a series of letters that make a sound – he gave me an strong, unblemished, upstanding name that demands a high level of integrity and compassion.

I may not have chosen my name, but the choice has had a profound impact on who I am.

I say all that to say this…

Whatever legacy may have been handed to you through your family name, you can build a legacy through the way you live each day now.  You can bring dignity, honor and joy to yourself and others that has a reach beyond this present moment in time. 

You’ll be surprised how many apparent dead ends in this a-MAZE-ing puzzle called ‘life’ will actually be doors of opportunity that will be unlocked as a result of your name and reputation.

Puzzle me this, puzzle me that….

What does your name mean?  What impact do you believe that your name has had on the choices that you’ve made?

If you’ve never taken the time to think about this, then now would be a good time to consider it.