Former Destiny’s Child singer and her partner Tim Witherspoon have received their first child (a baby boy) and named him Titan Jewell. Their unusual choice of name is inspired by the Titan gods in Greek mythology.
In the Greek mythology, Titans were members of the second order of divine beings, descending from the primordial gods and preceding the Olympian gods.
So it got me thinking.
But did you know that your name and personality might be related? Several reports indicate that your name can influence your character and destiny in life.
As a parent before you choose a name for your baby/child, always think twice; will this name bring good luck or bad luck for my child?
In the African Traditional Society (ATS), some parents used to name their child according to the situation in this lives, family or country. If a family is going through a tough period or country facing famine or drought or in case of a political instability, or someone in the family sick with a strange disease, some parents would choose a name with a meaning related to the problem.
But why would you name your child after a problem? Really!!! Not serious at all.
We don’t choose the names we carry, but they have an immense and often hidden effect on our lives. These names are badges bearing information about our class, education level, and ethnic origin — or at least those of our parents.
A name can even exert unconscious influence over a person’s own choices. To some degree, this has always been true: The Romans had the expression nomen est omen, or “name is destiny.”
One Puritan preacher also made this point explicitly to his congregation when he told them, “A good name is a thread tyed about the finger, to make us mindful of the errand we came into the world to do for our Master” (qtd. in Feldman).
These observations in life have come to explain the important effect names can have on the psychological development of individuals.
These days parents name their children names that you can’t even get a meaning just because their favorite singer has the same name. Research shows that most people who are adventurous, they always choose adventurous names.
Every parent should probably do your best to pick a name that matches your child’s personality because if you impose a role on your child with his or her name, they may feel pressured to live up to its aspirations.
An article by BehindTheName notes that the most important aspect of personality affected by names is self-concept. Self-concept develops as children develop, and it is “learned” from the verbal and non-verbal messages significant people in children’s lives send them.
“Self-concept works as a kind of script for the way people act. If a boy has an image of himself as bad or as not capable of doing well in school, his behavior will probably reflect that image. He will tend to behave the way he thinks a “bad boy” is supposed to behave, or he will fail to learn as he should even though he might be quite intelligent.”
A person’s name has an impact on the process of building a self-concept because the name helps determine the messages other people send the child.
It has been well established through research that certain names are generally considered desirable in our culture and have positive feelings associated with them. It is also well established that other names are looked upon as being undesirable and carry negative associations.
When a child grows up to the level of understanding and comes to know that his/her name has a negative meaning, especially from the form of jokes, teasing, and even ridicule, within the child’s peer group, this will affect his self-concept.
At best, the joking and teasing can make children self-conscious about their names and reluctant to have any contact with other children out of fear of being ridiculed. At worst, especially when insensitive adults think the jokes and nicknames are funny and actually use them too, it can undermine what might otherwise be healthy personalities.
However, there is still hope for humanity. Research by Roland Fryer of Harvard University found that names had no effect on success given that the people came from the same background.
The most important thing is raising confident children with a positive self-image. If you’re comfortable with yourself, you’ll be happy with your name.