How do you imagine them?

I’ve come up with a new sort of name-related series to replace this or that. This one will be rather short, just to see if any of you will like it. Join in and let me know if you like the idea.

The idea is – I give you the list of names, and your task is to imagine people with these names. Write as much or as little about how do you see them – how they look, what they are like, what they do for living, what they like, what their age is, whatever you want about them. If you know anyone with this name, try to think a bit out of the box and don’t let your previous associations disturb too much the picture of a person you’re creating, although it’s natural and obvious, or at least very likely, that both the person you know and their fictional namesake will have some traits in common. Of course, since I am a name nerd and people watcher, I won’t be just an altruist providing you the game, but I will also play along and perhaps help you figure out how to do it, you’ll find my descriptions below the list of names. My descriptions probably will seem a little outsider-ish to you, because I don’t live in an English-speaking country, so I don’t know people with most of these names and am not always oriented in what is their popularity or in which age group exactly. I’ll try for the names to be from different cultures so that it’d be possibly diverse and interesting.

Here we go:

List of names:

Eline

Eliam

Fiona

Garrett

Frida

James

Ida

Rune

Matilda

Archibald

Isabella

Angelo

Isabel

Emmanuel

My descriptions:

Eline – she is a Norwegian, in her early thirties, very smart and nerdy, but also good-looking, though rather shy. Eline is tall, slender, has chestnut hair and dark green eyes, her face is pale. She doesn’t tolerate stress well. Often feels lonely and misunderstood. Tries to overcome her shyness a lot and in fact is a very curious person, observes the world around her with interest and reads a lot. She is an introvert and deep down is rather dreamy, though doesn’t like to show it. Is also very sensitive and likes to help others. Tends to overthink a lot. She is a rather sporty person, but doesn’t like team sports, she rather prefers hiking alone in the woods or swimming in the sea. Eline has a very analytical mind. Sometimes may seem a bit detached, but this is her way to protect herself. I imagine her as a woman living in a town and single mum to one son whom she loves a lot and who means the world to her. She likes all kinds of crafts and is herself good at this kind of stuff.

Eliam – that’s a hard one a bit. I guess he’d be a Jew, it sounds very Biblical to me though I actually don’t know for sure from where this name comes. OK, so he’s a Jewish boy in his early teens. He has black hair, brown skin and hazel eyes, is rather small and thin for his age. He is very withdrawn, very different from his peers, is nerdy, likes fantasy books and games, often feels sad, comes from a very religious and not very warm family. Is interested by everything that has to do with magic or is enigmatic/mysterious. Hates school. Has issues with concentration, mostly because he dreams a lot and sometimes just disappears emotionally from his surroundings, this is his coping strategy. May be a bit selfish at times, maybe because I see him as an only child in the family. Doesn’t have many friends other than imaginary. Dreams about big adventures and being a hero/explorer.

Fiona – Scottish girl in her late twenties, with dark blonde hair, round rosy cheeks and big green eyes. Isn’t beautiful, but interesting and just nice, and that’s what people like about her. She appears to be very chatty and self-confident, but in fact is a bit insecure. May lose friends because of being too forthright. Is very determined when it’s needed. Fiona has a good, a bit self-deprecating sense of humour. She enjoys her life. Sometimes tends to catastrophise, but overall is rather an optimist and a very positive person, often inspiring for others. She is a good advisor. She is very modest and dedicated for her loved ones.

Garrett – American, in his thirties, sporty, tall, well-built, well-off, liked by women. He is a courageous, assertive man who always looks for new challenges, leads a dynamic life and is always in a hurry. He hates routine. Is easily annoyed. Doesn’t like to show negative emotions, other than anger, as they are a sign of weakness for him. Can be very blunt at times. If he has a wife or partner, his relationship is stable, though he likes to argue just for the sake of arguing and can be hot-tempered. He is very hardworking and wants those he loves to be safe and happy.

Frida – she’s Swedish, in her early fourties. Is very shy and introverted, not very liked and isolates herself on purpose from people. Leads an apparently very boring life, but her inner world is very rich. Frida isn’t the most cheerful person, but if she trusts you and if you are her friend, she is also very trustworthy and you can count on her. Her life isn’t easy, but she is very strong. She treasures her privacy, can be very suspicious of others. She’s tall, well-built, has sharp features, very light hair and pale skin, grey eyes. which she then tells others as true, although they sound very unlikely. She has a real willpower and is incredibly stubborn. She has a good relationship with his dad. Can be possessive of her friends or younger siblings if she has any.

James – he’s British, can be pretty much any age. Knows how to act in every situation, is charming and likeable. He has blonde hair, blue eyes, is tall and manly. James is a bit of an aristocrat, no matter his roots, he is classy, has a refined style, is kinda sophisticated, but not overly, just very naturally. Isn’t the most emotional person in the world, or actually it isn’t easy for him to show his emotions, but in fact he is quite sensitive. He is a strong man who likes to be a leader, but doesn’t have a problem if he has to follow instructions. he’s rather calm, but if he gets angry, he’s VERY angry. He is a loyal friend and loves deeply.

Ida – a girl in primary school, she’s Polish. She is short, skinny, very energetic and hyperactive. She’s a redhead with shiny green eyes. She has a fierce personality and appreciates her freedom above all. She asks lots of questions and has a very sharp mind. She is very curious about the world, and incredibly brave. Can be very impulsive and hard to tame. Likes to be the centre of attention, often makes other kids and even adults laugh, has a tendency to lie or at least make up a lot of things that sound very unlikely. Has a good relationship with her dad. She’s incredibly stubborn, often possessive of those she loves, and her moods change quicker than the weather.

Rune – he’s Swedish, in his late fourties. He’s a phlegmatic, a big thinker. He never speaks before thinking twice or thrice, which results in him being not very talkative. Rune likes family life, even if it’s predictable and monotonous, he hates any changes. He is a good person, though not the easiest to talk to, he seem to be constantly immersed deep down in his innermost world and barely notices what’s going on on the Earth. In fact though, he really cares about his loved ones and has a big heart, he is also very hardworking. He is a stocky man with shaggy, blonde but greying hair and gentle blue eyes with thick eyebrows. For some reason I think the guy named RUne I’m imagining has myopia.

Matilda – she’s a British teenager. Comes across as sour and rebellious, and rather isn’t liked, it seems even as if she would do everything to discourage people from talking to her or even just being around her. Sometimes can be really annoying with this attitude. In fact though, Matilda feels lost in her life, and often just doesn’t like herself. She’s capricious, fussy, moody, irritable, withdrawn and depressive. Though when she gets through this hard period, she becomes a much nicer and approachable person, with a lot of charm, that she doesn’t even know she has. Matilda is a slim redhead with green eyes and freckled face. She has often a very original style of dressing, and is generally a very extraordinary and quirky person.

Archibald – Archibald may be from Canada, I think. He is a guy in his 60’s. His hair used to be black, his eyes are brown, he has a beard and is a little overweight. He is a big man and still very strong, despite not being very young. He is incredibly determined, has strong will, is very proud and not the nicest of characters, however he’s very wise, fair and wants the best for his family, even if he seems unfeeling. He knows the worth of money and is quite rich. He doesn’t tolerate oposition and is very bossy.

Isabella – a woman in her 40’s, can be from anywhere actually. She is very beautiful and knows about it. She is tall, skinny, has blue eyes with long thick lashes and black hair. She is very feminine, likes dresses, high-heel shoes, is into lifestyle, health, fashion. May seem a bit shallow and vain. She is very sensitive and sophisticated though and is also interested in things like parapsychology or spirituality. She is a mum, and loves her kids. As a wife can be a bit difficult and make her husband feel jealous on purpose, she’s also very capricious and changeable. It is a very ambitious person, a real perfectionist.

Angelo – a Spanish guy in his twenties, he’s a Christian, has a heart of gold, is very energetic, an idealist. He loves music. He’s so much of an idealist that he may actually seem naive. He loves will all his heart and can do a lot for those he loves, he likes children and can work with them. Girls like him because he’s handsome and charming and always positive. He has dark brown eyes, almond-shaped brown eyes and very tanned skin, he’s not very tall, but well-built.

Isabel – she’s pretty much like Isabella, but more dynamic, and more passionate about life in general, a bit less egocentric. EMmanuel – a guy in his 30’s, with black hair, dark complexion and dark eyes. He is an artist, is very open-minded and generally thinks a lot. May seem a bit too detached at times. He has lots of great ideas, but too little will to realise them at times, though it doesn’t have to be a rule. He lacks spontaneity. EMmanuel is a very good advisor and always looks at things objectively.

How do you imagine them? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Do you have a mind for science and math? Would you consider yourself an intellectual? My answer:
I was never particularly good at science at school, if it can indicate whether someone has a mind for science or not, I was quite average. I wasn’t also particularly outstanding at biology or chemistry, and was as lame, hopeless and clueless as you only can imagine at physics and maths and hate it with all my brain. Me and my Mum actually tried very hard to get me a certificate for dyscalculia as one of my teachers suggested, but the woman who evaluated me told us that yes, I theoretically match the criteria but for some reason blind people can’t be diagnosed with dyscalculia, but I didn’t actually get out of her why exactly. If not, it’s OK, but then why won’t they adjust things so that they would be more manageable for those blind people who struggle with mathematical concepts? As far as I know it’s not just me, although I seem to be the most hopeless case of those I know of. ๐Ÿ˜€ A bit incomprehensible for me that they don’t want to cooperate more, and incredibly annoying, but very luckily it’s all the past and I don’t have to worry about that shit anymore!!!!!!!!!
However, I still do like some things about science, and I would say my approach to many things is rather scientific. I don’t like this division – that some fields are scientific, and some are humanities and arts so they completely aren’t scientific, or that some people have scientific minds, while others have humanist/artistic. I think most of those fields that are called humanities or arts are also scientific more or less, and moreover, often people who work in these fields have scientific minds too. Like I often hear people saying that for example psychology is a humanist field, so not scientific. But I think it’s a great deal of both. Same would be music, social sciences, politology, linguistics, many arts, and so on. So, I’d say I lean more to those fields that many people would call not scientific but rather humanist –
like languages, writing, music, etc. but I often involve in them with quite a scientific approach. Particularly when it comes to languages and how I learn them and how I understand various language concepts. I’ve also had people telling me that actually my way of thinking seems pretty scientific to them, and my Mum constantly keeps saying that I’m analysing way too much stuff and should become a philosopher, and it always pisses her off for some reason when I do so. ๐Ÿ˜€ I easily notice similarities in things even those that are apparently unrelated to each other which sometimes leads me to quite surprising conclusions. I like deducing lots of things rather than getting to know them straight as they are from someone. I like researching stuff and when something really interests me I can be incredibly inquiring to the point of nosiness at times. ๐Ÿ˜€ After all I am an Aquarius and all that seems to be characteristic for this zodiac sign. I guess all that can be also called characteristics of a scientific mind. Plus I also am into psychology, medicine, human brain, and some other things that are to do with science by their nature, and if I would see I would be a neurosurgeon for sure. And I’m a bit geeky/nerdy overall.
As for being an intellectual, hm, I’m surely intelligent, people often say that above average, but it is mainly my Mum, who is certainly not objective. ๐Ÿ˜€ But yeah, I myself too like to think that I am intelligent, and I think most of my interests and things I do require some intellectual potential as well as develop it further. I certainly like to do things with my brain and I like intellectual challenges. When there were still social classes that were significantly divided in Poland my Mum’s family were intellectuals, and this is still visible in what they are like, both my grandparents are very intelligent and so are they children, and they have always respected intellectual work and have a lot of comprehensive knowledge even if not all of my grandparents’ kids have graduated from unis because they simply didn’t want to, like for example my Mum started studying pedagogic but stopped very quickly because she just realised it’s not for her, and her true dream was to work in gastronomy, which isn’t something very intellectual, but anyway she was never able to achieve it either. Most of my Mum’s family are also naturally witty people and appreciate a good, but not too simple joke which seems to also be a trait of intelligent people. I think I have a lot after my Mum’s family, that I like to learn, even if these aren’t conventional things you can learn at school, ’cause I am absolutely fed up with education system overall as I said before. I’ve also learnt a lot, particularly from my Grandad, who, although he is a food technologist by profession, has also been very keen about medicine and he taught me a lot about different aspects of it, practically anytime we talk I learn something new. ๐Ÿ˜€ I also think I have some sense of humour after them, be it in the way I can see lots of absurd in many life situations whee an average person wouldn’t see anything particular, or in the fact that I like making people laugh, have, or try to have some healthy distance to most of things and laughing off stuff is my life coping strategy in many situations, I am also often sarcastic and cynnical just like my grandad and my Mum, though each of us in a bit different way. So I think I can call myself an intellectual.
How about you? Do you like science, or have a scientific mind? How about math? Do you think about yourself as an intellectual? How does it all manifest in you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Do you consider yourself artistic, in any way?

My answer:

What does actually the word artistic mean? ‘Cause, I feel like there could be a few definitions. An artistic person could be simply an artist, so, I suppose, someone who makes a living with their art. But then do really all artists make a living with their art? Someone told me that the art is only when it has a receiver, so all those who are artists are those who show their works to others, and those who for example write poetry and keep it in the drawer, these people aren’t artists, and no matter how beautiful things they create, they’re worthless because they don’t have readers/listeners/viewers… that sounds rather radical, but OK, maybe that’s true, I’m certainly not an art expert. Artistic may also mean someone who is artsy and does a lot of stuff like singing, writing, crafting, for a hobby, and they’re particularly good at it. I also have an impression that many people tend to exclude all the other arts than visual and all that is art for them is if someone paints, draws, carves or sculpts etc. that is particularly weird for me. Like kids have art classes at school and it only includes visual arts, not that much writing, singing, playing instruments, acting or whatever else.

Naah there seems to be way too many different definitions and meanings behind the words art and artistic. So I’m gona share my own with you. An artistic person, in my personal opinion, is someone who is first and foremost creative. They’re usually an aesthete, highly sensitive, particularly to beauty. They don’t necessarily have to be real artists so painters or poets, but what they do is like an art for them, I mean they’re very good at it and they do it in their own way, they’re devoted to it with all their heart, soul and mind. Their art might be pretty modest and not important in the grand scheme of things, but it is what makes them happy and, usually, is also of great benefit for those around them. This is just how I would interpret the word artist. And, as a stereotypical artist, such people are usually pretty quirky and view things differently than many other people, in just their own way.

The first such an artistic soul that comes to my mind is my Mum. She doesn’t do any real art, well, she can crochet very well, she is pretty good at writing, was at school at least, and has some gift for acting which she sometimes gives an outlet to while reading books to either me or Zofijka, or while imitating other people for fun. But she doesn’t do neither of those things regularly, she doesn’t do anything conventionally artistic on a daily basis. But she cooks like a real artist, she often says that cooking is an art, but also a very scientific thing, so much physics in it. She is very inventive in the kitchen. also she is very sensitive to beauty and has a somewhat sophisticated style, she is passionate about decorating houses, even if it’s not something she herself does. She easily notices beauty in people and places and knows how to elicit it, that’s why she wanted to be an interior designer or a beautician. And she’s incredibly diplomatic, and that’s an art too. So she definitely is artistic.

Well now as for me. I write regularly – short stories, sometimes quirky or humourous poems, recently we were remaking a lot of nursery rhymes with Zofijka into more sassy and witty versions (I just can’t be serious in poetry although I would like sometimes), I’m working on translating Cornelis Vreeswijk’s works from Swedish into Polish which I also consider some sort of art, I am also musical although I’m not doing anything about it at the moment other than being a keen listener to a lot of music. But even if I write something, nowadays I rarely show it to someone, so in a conventional way I wouldn’t consider myself an artist now. However in my definition I think I am artistic in some way because I definitely am sensitive to beauty, and quite creative, I like to do creative stuff with the language, and I am a synaesthete which is – maybe a bit stereotypically – usually attributed as a sort of artistic trait, I am highly imaginative, so I think I do have some artistic side to my nature. Oh, and so many people say that baby naming is also an art, which I actually agree with.

How about you? DO you consider yourself artistic? How does it manifest? What does the word artistic actually mean to you? Would you agree with my definition? ๐Ÿ™‚

How to figure out people’s personalities fairly easily?

Thought I’d write about the thing that I brought up once on my Polish blog before and it got quite a lot of interest. I deleted my Polish WordPress blog before I even started this one and haven’t saved the posts, but I’ll try to retrace it as faithfully as I can.
When I was much younger, I started to be very fascinated by people’s personalities. How they distinct between each other, what they have in common, and as I was, and still am, a habitual people watcher, I tried to find some relationships between speciffic character traits and what may cause them. It wasn’t actually only about the personalities, but individuals as a whole. I had tons of ideas, why this person is similar to that, and not someone else. Yes, genes, upbringing, social environment, but… it has to be something else. Some of my ideas were pretty reasonable, as I think, some just kinda overanalysing stuff or just nonsense, like I realised that many guys around me who were tall, were also phlegmatic, and I was convinced it’s a relationship between these two traits and that simply tall people/men are usually phlegmatic. ๐Ÿ˜€ My interest has grown bigger one day when I went to the hairdresser with my Mum and I heard them talking about astrology. It was a completely new word to me and what they were talking about seemed very interesting and coinciding with my views that there are some speciffic traits that can determine who we are or what we’re like. I then developed some interest in astrology, which was rather superficial back then, but it’s still wasn’t what I was looking for.
Another thing that led me closer to the breakthrough was meeting a person at the boarding school, who was named like me. We were just smalltalking, I introduced myself to her and she was like aw we have the same name, do you know what it means? I was like what? Can names mean anything? And thanks to her I realised that yes, names have meanings. But I haven’t heard about it more since much later. I heard in the church on saint Anna’s day, which is also my Mum’s name day, that Anna comes from the Hebrew word hannah, and means “grace, charm, mercy”. That left me wondering what my Dad’s name could mean. Many of you probably already know that my Dad’s name is Jacek, and I’ve always loved this name, I’ve always felt some kind of attraction to people named Jacek and when I was very small I used to say that if I’ll ever marry someone, his name would have to be Jacek. I wondered and wondered, and the answer came at a quite unexpected moment.
At the time I was going to the integration school, I got funding for my first computer with screenreader and other specialised stuff, and as I of course had no idea how to use all that and neither had anyone in my family, there was a girl who was training me. We were getting along very well and one day the topic of names came up somehow, we were playing with Zofijka who was only about a year old and we were saying she’s clever, and she summed it that it’s no wonder, because sophia means “wisdom” in Greek. So I asked her whether she knows what the name Jacek means, and she didn’t, as I supposed, but why not look it up. Long live the Internet! She opened a website where there was everything in detail about the etymology of the name Jacek, all its diminutives, other language forms (which I now know where wrong because everyone thinks Jacek is Polish for Jack) and something I didn’t quite understand what it was for at first. A characteristic of the name Jacek. Or rather, of a person bearing it. How can you characterise Jacek if there are so many Jaceks out there? But, at least for my Dad, the description seemed to fit.
That was the start for my new passion. The main thing I did online for a while was educating myself about names, their meanings, etymologies, but above all, traits they give those who bear them. But… something was still not quite as it should be. There are tons of descriptions over there, it’s true that most of them have something that shows you in some way the personality of a person bearing a certain name, but it wasn’t always so. why do they differ so much? Shouldn’t there be one concrete description for every name, if it is meant to be believable? Like there is the name Jรณzef (you guessed it, Joseph) and on one website they say Jรณzefs are hardworking, modest, shy and very practical minded people, while on another, they say they’re chronic procrastinators, very judgmental, narrow minded and narcissistic. How are these two descriptions supposed to work together for the same person? How thousands people with the same name are supposed to fit the same three-line description? Can it actually work? Also, why are there so many characteristics with only good character traits? And then you can stumble upon something which only describes flaws of a person? Is it all actually worth anything? What with people who have rare names? Hyphenated? Double? Middle name(s)? DOesn’t a nickname change anything? How about those who share their name with other people, but don’t resemble their namesakes at all?
It has taken me a lot of time to figure it out so that I felt satisfied, but quickly I realised that something like influence of a name on a person who bears it exists, but you have to think on your own to figure it out and how it works. I was looking up descriptions for very many names in very many sources, and people watching and analysing obsessively. And I started to see some rules and patterns to the game. I started to see that every name has its own feel, it may be similar to the feel another name has, but it’s never the same. This feel gives you an idea of some traits, I’d say kinda symbolises some traits. I went so deep into it that it started to work in my mind like a sort of synesthesia, even though it wasn’t. Like, you tell me your name is Helena – I see quite an attractive woman, with long black hair, pretty, heart-shaped face, dark blue eyes with long lashes, regular features, very feminine, sensitive, impulsive, generous, idealist, incredibly dedicated and altruistic, creative, ambivert, honest, very very proud, so that actually a bit overly, it’s hard for her to apologise, forgive, ask for anything, she has a very passionate nature.., likes to be mischievous at times, is easily hurt, an aesthete, very intelligent, but not quite a cerebral sort, very loyal friend, can be vindictive, envious, often exaggerates things, is very dreamy and a fantastic storyteller and housewife, when she’s young though, growing to adulting may take her more time than her peers and she likes to be cared for and awakens caring instincts in guys, she may sometimes want to be bossy and authoritarian, but it’s not her true nature, she is better as a part of the group than its leader, or particularly when working on her own, since she’s so very creative, she gets frustrated easily and her enthusiasm is passionate but short-lived…
The thing with appearance is entirely my personal quirk. It doesn’t mean all Helenas look or should look like that and are such beauties. I don’t know any Helena like that. But, for me, an ideal Helena, who would fit her name perfectly, should look like that, or close to it. She doesn’t have to have heart-shaped face or long lashes, doesn’t even have to have black hair, can be blonde and have light blue, or green, or grey eyes, or maybe even can be a redhead, kind of orange, but there just are appearance traits that fit Helena, and any other name, better, and such that don’t fit at all.
As for the personality. It doesn’t have to mean AT ALL that you’re like this. After all, all of us are luckily different. But if your parents gave you this name, it means that you’re very likely to develop these traits in your personality. Much more than if they called you, erm, whatever, let’s say Lisa. Your genes, your upbringing, environment and all the other factors that are more important may highlight these traits, or some of them, or may supplant them. And you may feel kinda conflicted, like there are two conflicting sides of you, or like your surroundings want you to be someone different than you are, or you may simply not like your name and not feel like it’s good for you. That was the case with me before I changed my name legally and it was one of the reasons behind it. I like my birth name, it’s classic and feminine, but I hated it on myself. It is very hard to explain, but anytime someone called me, somewhere deep inside I felt like they’re actually talking to someone else who I am supposed to fake. Or like they don’t know the truth and see someone in me who I am not. It felt like sorta dissonance. All that stuff about harmony prevailing in your life and how it is important sounds so incredibly cliche, but it can really influence you and your life when all of the aspects of you aren’t set in harmony. That’s what I think, have experienced and seen in others, anyway. That’s why many name nerds freak out so much when they see a clashing combo of a first and middle name. For many it’s just the thing of sound – you know, syllables, going well with the surname – but for others it’s something deeper. These names have to flow. Be similar in the feel, yet complement each other. So, going back to that poor Helena, if her middle name was Lisa, my opinion is that she would be quite a conflicted person. These names have so different vibes. I’m sure you can feel it. This is the art of naming.
You can ask yourself, who would be so dedicated and searched for an ideally matching name for their child, how you can predict your child’s personality, tendencies, to make the name(s) flow well with it. That can be a tough thing for some, but, surprisingly, most parents have that infallible instinct and nail it. I am particularly in awe for those who have some traditions in their family to give the children a few middle names. It could seem a damn hard work to make them all flow nicely and in harmony with the child’s tendencies, but most of them just seem to unconsciously do it right.
As some of you know, I love baby naming and helping people with naming their kids/book characters etc. so much that I’ve actually considreed seriously becoming a professional baby namer. So far though, I limit myself to helping people in my surroundings or on online forums for pregnant mummies. We have one here in Poland that is really reliable and there are lots of geeks in the field over there, and there are American Behind The Name, Nameberry and others, which are websites speciffically dedicated to names. What I always tell parents on our Polish forum when they have some ideas, but don’t know what to choose finally is – just wait until the childbirth and you’ll see who he/she looks like. One of the mums was confused – how you can see it who your child looks like – and I also wasn’t sure what to actually tell her, so I just said that when she sees her, she’ll have more clear idea I think. And then after her daughter was born she wrote to me: “Emi, you were right that I should see her before I choose the name. Now I know what you meant. She certainly doesn’t look like a Karolina. She is a KORNELIA!”. So I think when you become a parent, you just know what to do instinctively.
I think the worst thing you can do and the most common reason why some people’s names clash with their personalities, is a situation when before they even have a child on the way, parents are absolutely convinced about the name they will choose for their kid, for example friends promise each other they will name their children after each other. Friendships will pass, children have nothing in common with your ex-friends, but the name stays with them. That’s what happened to both my cousin and me, so that when I was changing my name even my Mum encouraged me to do it, because she “picked it so spontaneously”, just to honour a friend. Also naming children after currently popular stars/book/movie characters isn’t a good idea. The trend will pass, and there will be a whole generation of children named the same name just because of that celebrity/character being popular once, and most of such people don’t rather like their name. Of course if you’re a long time fan of some celebrity, book or movie and it’s your all time favourite, it’s a bit different. Your child will know you picked the name for them because you really liked it and had nice associations with it, and not because there was just a boom on something when they were born and you happened to be crazy about it at that time just like everyone else. I think I don’t have to mention about situations when parents give their children ridiculous or extremely rare/kre8tiv names to make them successful in life. I’d say you just have to go with your heart, and then ask your brain what he thinks about it.
What I learned very quickly as I explored the world of names was that it’s so very easy to become judgmental and trust your gut too easily. I mean, you can trust yourself, if you get how it works, it really helps me personally to have some idea of a person I can meet even before I meet them if I know their name. But sticking to that idea is something definitely not good and unfair to that person. You have to be careful to not judge them too quickly and assume you just know what they’re like.
I had a classmate, his name was Mariusz. I don’t know anyone whose name would be more mismatched with the personality than his. I think what lost their parents was the ambition that they wanted to call all their children with names beginning with M. When I heard that we will have a new student in our class and his name is Mariusz, I got a very speciffic picture of a person that I expected him to be. All the Mariusz’s I knew were a kind of guys that my Mum calls “teddy bears”. Overweight, lumpish, usually in their late 30’s early 40’s, phlegmatic, calm, like to eat well, that’s a teddy bear in my Mum’s dictionary. Plus guys with this name I knew were always lacking in imagination, sociable, rather well to do, eloquent, good daddies and rather boring people living very monotonous, schematic, but stable and family-centered lives.
And when I met that boy for the first time, I was shocked. He was anything but it. Well he was rather calm, but it was more of shyness than his real temperament, he liked to eat well and was more practical than imaginative, but that was all. Other than that, he didn’t fit his name as much as it can only be possible. He was short and thin, very agile and sporty, not eloquent at all and a bit of a nerd. ๐Ÿ˜€ I couldn’t be more mistaken. Needless to say he didn’t like his name. Around his friends, he was going by a nickname completely unrelated to his name. Once even one of our teachers commented that he doesn’t look like a Mariusz. And yeah, that learned me that I can be right very often and be good at figuring out others’ personalities, but that doesn’t mean I can just judge a book by its cover.
With time I realised that names and naming are a really fascinating thing, and stopped relying on online resources/books when it comes to name characteristics. I know I was good at it because my name instinct rarely let me down, and I started to be popular among my friends and they always came to me when they wanted to know a characteristic of a name and were always like “Wooow how do you know it?” ๐Ÿ˜€
I could and still am wrong at times, no one is unfallible and this is a very subtle area, but most of my assumptions or “forecasts” are right or at least fair.
I started to explore Behind The Name then and to go deeper into foreign names and name trends in general. And then I started to wonder whether the English-speaking Internet has some sites like we have, with characteristics of people based on their names. ‘Cause so far I haven’t seen any.
I was searching intensively for something, but the only stuff I seemed to find were sites based entirely on numerology. During the time when I was so very interested in all things esoteric in the past, I’ve explored numerology and I think it doesn’t work well with names. You have just 9, or optionally 13 numbers that you can operate on and that can represent different types of personalities and different symbols. If you get a whole numerological portrait of a person, I don’t know, maybe it could work, but if you have names and want to make characteristics of names based on numerology and only on numerology, what you’ll get is even more nonsense than on our sites, because you get a dozen or so of names that fit one description. And another reason why I really dislike such sites is that you often only have a search edit field to enter a name there, and you actually can enter ANYTHING you want. I once typed Shit, and I got a characteristic of Shit’s personality. Isn’t that very creative? ๐Ÿ˜€ I think it is, but not quite what I was searching for.
So far, I’ve found only one fairly good English website with very detailed characteristics of a very wide range of names. Sometimes they may be repetitive and they say these characteristics are also based solely on numerology, but I think it’s either not true, or they go into some more sophisticated numerology because their characteristics are really detailed and most often good.
That’s a pity that English-speaking countries, with all that wide range names that are freely in use, aren’t more interested in that stuff, but luckily there are many good sites with cold raw facts about names that aren’t just made up or not verified, and there are much more baby naming/name nerd communities than it is over here.
If you read this and are also interested in the topic and know some good English resources with name characteristics, let me know, it will be much appreciated.
It’s not as easy for me to make my own characteristics of foreign names as it is with Polish names, but I’ve been working on it a lot and I think I am fairly good at it. If I hear the name for the first time, of course it sounds usually very unfamiliar to me and I can’t say anything about it, but as I hear it often repeated, write it or something, it gets more personality. However I still have some issues with those names that are completely out there for me, like dunno Asian, African… and I’ve never done a characteristic of any super rare/unheard name for anyone else so I don’t know how good I’m at it. And sometimes I struggle with very popular names too, such timeless classics, all the Katherines, Janes, Annes, Marys, Johns, James’ and their equivalents in popularity in other cultures. It’s because they are so common and it’s hard to be objective and make a universal characteristic without relying only on the personality traits of all the people I know with that particular name, and not too universal and general so that almost anyone could fit in, as so many people seem to do. What was very stressful for me for a long time was when someone asked me for making a characteristic of their own name, and I knew them well. I was afraid I will fail at separating their name’s traits with their own personality traits and that they will think I just said all that I know about them personally. But now I think I cope better with it and am better at doing it objectively and right. Also what I find particularly hard with English names is figuring out for each name how its spelling influences the person, I mean for example how can Lyndsay be different from Lindsay and whether the differences are significant enough that we need to make completely separate characteristics for them. That’s really interesting. Websites fix it with numerology, but since I don’t really believe in it and its effectiveness, I don’t know what would be the best to do.
Have you ever wondered what more can be to a name than just how it sounds and looks? How do you feel about your own? Do you agree with all that or not, believe that your name can influence you in any way? Why or why not? Have you any thoughts or questions? Is it of any interest for you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Do you consider yourself a nurturer? Do you have a nurturing friend?

My answer:

Hm, that was a little bit tricky for me, since I felt like I hadn’t have very clear idea of what actually nurturer means. It’s because there’s no equivalent word for it in my native language which is Polish, so my idea of it was rather brief, just someone who nurtures, and the word nurture actually can’t be expressed in one word either, at least as far as I know. But I found a very interesting definition, not in any dictionary, but apparently there is a personality type based on MBTI, which is called nurturer and this is ISFJ. At least the site personalityperfect.com calls this type the nurturer. I did the MBTI test only once and not very carefully but it says I’m INFP, but I used their description of ISFJ to see if I can consider myself as a nurturer.

They say nurturers are philanthropic, altruistic and generous, to put it simply. I don’t know if I’d call myself philanthropic, rather not, but I think I am generous and I like to help people if I can. I used to be a real altruist like REAL, as is my Mum, but I’ve noticed it isn’t always the very best thing to do, so I try to be reasonably altruistic, although as in many other interpersonal situations it’s often hard for me to deduce where actually the middle is and where the extremes begin, but I’m learning with time, I believe.

They say that: “The people and things they believe in will be upheld and supported with enthusiasm and unselfishness.” Well, I try to be supportive towards people whom I believe in and I quickly engage in their lives and am always happy with their successes, as for things, everyone who knows me a bit knows that if I’m into something, I am always way too enthusiastic about it, which is the more hard for other people to stand that I have a lot of interests, so a lot of things to be enthusiastic about, which at times is just the only thing that keeps me motivated when both my mood and energy are so low that otherwise I wouldn’t even be able to move my finger, which really saves me.

They say they’re warm and kind-hearted. Well I don’t think many people would say I’m warm, in fact I’ve heard either directly or via some other kind individuals that I am frosty or even icy, and I think they’re right because after so many years of stifling emotions it has become damn hard for me to release tem even when I am just with myself not to mention with other people. I try to seem as warm and emotional as I can though. As for kind-hearted, um, yeah, I guess I have the genes for it as my family consists of incredibly kind-hearted and sensible people, but I’d rather leave it for others to say, as I think no one can be objective about themselves in this case.

“They value harmony and cooperation, and are likely to be very sensitive to other people’s feelings.” I do value harmony in my environment and surroundings a lot, I do value harmony in music even more, as for cooperation – emmmmmm well naaah, I’m not for it at all, well I wouldn’t be like rebellious if I’d have to cooperate with you and I’d try to do my best for me and for our team, but I’ve never liked cooperating and had never been good at cooperation, I was always either the one who let all the others do everything just doing my job as quickly as possible to be free from it, or I was the “leader” doing everything for everyone to not have to communicate with them too much, I am oversensitive for other people’s feelings, which can have its advantages, but often sucks, which I think every empath with a lot of imagination and interest in others would confirm. I am not only sensitive to their emotions, but also sometimes to how they feel physically, like it often happened when my Mum had period I just felt kind of like I had it too, even though mine was just gone. ๐Ÿ˜€ That’s so weird.

They say nurturers are considerate – um, I guess I am, – and bring out the best in others – not sure.

So that’s all about the nurturers, and I think I can say that overall I am a nurturer.

As for friends, yes, I do know lots of people who would fit these “criteria”. First of all my Mum, who is definitely my friend (my Mum is an ISFJ!!!), one of my blind Polish friends who had just a heart of gold despite having a total hell of life herself. Since like a year I’ve made a lot of friends in mental health communities, particularly on email lists, and now here on WordPress, and I see a lot of people everywhere whom I could call nurturing. And then there is my best friend, about whom I’m actually not sure anymore if we’re still best friends since he seems to decide to not keep n touch with me anymore, though I don’t know any reason for it, we haven’t written or talked together for almost half year now but I still do think about him as my best friend even just because I got used to it so much. Anyway, I could see a lot of traits in him that would match the above very well. So I think he is a nurturer, even if nurturers don’t usually end their relationships out of the blue, but as I said I don’t know his point of view, so don’t want to base my opinion just on my feelings. I also had to cut off all the contact with some people in the past so I don’t think I have the right for judging him, even if from my perspective he hadn’t have any reason to do it.

OK, so how about you? And your friends? Feel free to use this description of nurturer I used, or any other definition, however you want to answer this. ๐Ÿ™‚

Suspicious.

My Dad is very suspicious

by nature. So suspicious that I often even call him paranoid. He was suspicious as long as I can remember, always thinking that all people around are cheating – on him, on us, on the whole world. Of course, especially media, politicians, health services, Mum, Internet… but in fact, more or less, everyone. He has always had a very hard relationship with Olek – my brother. I’m sure he loves him, but he always treats him like kinda black sheep and whatever he would do is automatically perceived as absolutely wrong. It was always a significant issue and a reason to worry for my Mum.

My Dad isn’t a man you could have a really deep discussion with, as much as I love him I have to admit he has his views, prejudices and so on so any deeper conversations usually won’t make much sense or even may cause an arguement. But even though sometimes it happens that we talk about more deep stuff, as he likes to talk to me. And sometimes I talk to him about what I’ve read in a speciffic topic we are chatting about. And then he is usually like: “Why do you think they are right? Maybe they just want to manipulate people. Maybe they have paid to write this and not anything else?.” And such thinking makes me feel helpless. I mean – sure, there are lots of manipulative people, manipulative strategies in media, some form of manipulation is probably almost everywhere, not necessarily to make us any harm, but if just everyone is manipulative, what should we believe in? Or why actually should we believe in anything? Why does he believe in God? Maybe it’s just one big cheating? You know, I’m not assuming it is indeed, I am Christian as well, but, thinking the way he does… everything looks so pointless, doesn’t it? Just think, everybody is a total cheater, there’s no one to trust in the world, you have only yourself, well, I wouldn’t even be so sure if he actually trusts even himself. It looks so depressive. And thinking about it, about what my Dad’s reality looks like, makes me depressive, even if it’s not really my reality. I am sorry for him that he chose to live in such an unsatisfying way. But I can’t change it. It is only he who could change it and although he’s grumping so often, he doesn’t seem to really want it.

I am also a pessimist although I think my pessimism is more of a defensive kind, you know, I prefer to be ready for the worst even if everything looks like it’s going to be all good, but that’s how different life circumstances made me and I like to think about myself I still have have the ability to be happy and appreciate even pretty small things and I don’t really like to complain in front of other people, I just find it pretty weakish, anyway when I do so. But my Dad’s pessimism, for me, seems to be only all about grumping, complaining about others, about other people’s dogs peeing where they shouldn’t, not doing anything constructive with his life and thinking almost only about bad things that are happening to him. What frustrates me, he never seems to be really glad of anything, or, more exactly, I suppose he must have some moments when he’s at least a bit happy, but he can’t show it and it really can piss off people around him if they try and do their best to make him happy or at least to make him appreciate what we do for him. Personally I feel like he always kinda favoured me the most in comparison to my siblings, so I didn’t feel it that much directly, but I’ve observed my Mum and my siblings who haveย  tried a lot to satisfy him and no one and nothing seem to be good enough which makes them discouraged, and me frustrated for them. Now as he is getting older, although he still isn’t old, all these traits seem to deepen, and he doesn’t even see it. I really do love my Dad and with years I’ve learnt how to act with him, but he’s going more and more annoying and challenging for us. As my Mum put it recently while talking with me – he wants to be mentally old. He is in quite good condition physically, but mentally gets old extremely quickly. He’s not even yet in his fifties, but looking only at his personality traits, I doubt anyone could guess it.

But what exactly did I want to say in this post? No, its main purpose isn’t complaining at my Dad, not even letting out my emotions related to him and his difficult and challenging way of being.

What sometimes concerns me, when I think about him, about what he’s like, is that although I think I can’t say I’m grumpy or really overly demanding for people, I see a lot of his traits in myself. actually more than in my siblings. I think, characterwise I am more similar to him than to my Mum, whereas my siblings are rather more similar to her. She says so too. And although of course he has also a lot of good traits, sometimes I am afraid. I am afraid because as far as I can remember I had issues with trusting people, not as he has, but rather in the way I’m always pretty distant to people, even those I want to be close to. I have always had the tendency to be depressive, to overthink, to feel hopeless. I am often very stressed out about small things and always very unsettled by any major changes in life, no matter if good or bad. I am slightly obsessed about my privacy. And I often feel ridiculously suspicious about people in some situations, which can be really mentally exhausting. I know that lots of situations in my life, often very early on, helped my to develop all that and it’s not only the case of just genes or the thing that I wanted to be like this, and my suspiciousness differs from his, but I’m afraid. I’m afraid that someday, when I’ll be let’s say the age he’s now, I’ll realise that I am like him. Overly suspicious, cautious and not letting people to like me. That my life will be as hopeless and empty as his is, or seems to be for me. That I will clinge to my stupid daily routines like he does now in fear of just any changes. Luckily I don’t have such temper as he has so I think having such impressional tantrums won’t be my domain. ๐Ÿ˜€ It is Zofijka’s. ๐Ÿ˜› and actually I always try to avoid this thought because I really don’t like to think about it and I feel like it’s a bit ridiculous to be afraid about such odd things which could only happen in very distant future, , but I can’t help I’m afraid about it. isn’t it a total paranoia to be paranoid about being paranoid in thirty years? ๐Ÿ˜€