Monday, May 23, 2011

Time for a Name Change? by Kathy Atkinson

Time for a Name Change? by Kathy Atkinson

Have you ever contemplated changing your name? Does your current name reflect who you are or does it feel like it limits you in any way?

I once asked a friend why she kept her ex-husband’s last name instead of changing it back to her maiden name, especially since her marriage was an emotional drain on her that lasted many years. She explained to me that her childhood wasn’t much better and she didn’t want to take on, or take back, that old energy.

As I was thinking about this subject, I realized that over the years, I have met many people who have legally changed their names or unofficially adopted new names.

Typically, business owners and professionals avoid using their nicknames so they appear more professional and are considered an expert. Would you rather learn from Robert the expert or Bob?

A friend of mine named Sandy was going to run for political office a few years ago. She let everyone know in her inner circle that she wanted to be called “Sandra” during the campaign because she wanted to adopt a more professional persona.

An image consultant that I am friends with dropped his first name and began using his initials to evoke a more professional image.
I frequently have clients adopt a “new persona” when they want to show up in their lives differently. This process can involve choosing a different name or more typically by adding the characteristic that they want to exhibit, such as “Connie the Confident”, “Lucky Larry” or “Mary the Magnificent Money Attractor”.

We see branding personas on the internet all the time. From Ezine Queen, Video Marketing King, Article Marketing Expert to Money Guru. My EFT colleague Jan Luther calls herself “The Ego Tamer”. These names help to keep the business owner focused and on track regarding the information they want to share and also boosts the expert image they want to portrait to the public.

Are you feeling stuck in your life or in your career? Would it be of value to you to adopt a name change, a new persona or a new branding identity at this point in your life?
A colleague of mine recently changed just one letter in her name and immediately noticed a difference in her interactions and conversations with others. What change would you like to make?

Action Challenge

Actors play different roles all the time. Choose a different role to play.

Choose a name to reflect the image or persona that you want to convey.

Adopt the new behaviors, beliefs and physical characteristics that correspond with your new persona…“Act the part.”
Have fun showing up differently. Have fun “playing the part”.

You are not stuck in the same old, same old. Give yourself permission to be different. Give yourself permission to be your true self with a different name or different persona.

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