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Blog What's Your Name

What's Your Name

05/13/2021


What’s your name?

Sounds like a silly question, right? However for myself and a number of other business women I’ve talked with, this question can have us questioning.

The “name” I’m talking about here, is what name do you personally want to use in your business. What name do you want to author under. What name do you want announced when you are about to speak on stage. Is it your legal name? Maiden name? Married name? Or a stage name or pen name?

I got married at age 39. I had my business for 15 years prior. In that time, I used my maiden name. When I got married, I chose to take my husband’s name. Due to a birth certificate error, my middle name became omitted after marriage as well.

I used my husband’s last name, and for a while abbreviated my first name to initials since his name was long. I tried all different renditions of my name.

The big decision, of what name do I want to use for my public work, came when I was publishing my first book. What name did I want to put on it?

When I thought about using my maiden name, I felt I wasn’t honoring my married name, and vice versa! Using both was way too long, and didn’t feel aligned.

I played with it for a while, and I always sign my work “Love, Bobbie Jo.”

That is what I wanted to use, my signature. In order to do so, I needed to list “Love” as the first name, and “Bobbie Jo” as my last name.

It took a little time to really own that, as it is so different than what most do. Yet, within I felt that alignment. It is my essence, my signature, me.

I am “all” of my names. And making my public signature this simple, feels good. I am still honoring all of me.

Other women I’ve spoke with had this similar scenario, wanting to honor both names, yet, not wanting to use both names, nor one over the other.

Other women have shared about being divorced and not wanting to continue with their married name, nor no longer feeling aligned going back to their maiden name.

Names are how people identify us, and it can feel off if the identity stamped on us doesn’t feel aligned.

The beautiful thing is, you can choose a stage name or pen name. If you look at a lot of celebrities, or authors, you will find they have chosen a new name, for a variety of different reasons.

It’s your choice. It’s your voice. It’s your name. How would you like to be seen and addressed for the art you put out into the world? How do you want to sign your gifts?

I once prayed to God, asking what my gift was, and heard the reply of “Love.” Bobbie Jo is my birth name, therefore it makes sense that I’d sign the gifts I’m birthing into the world as: Love Bobbie Jo.

If you’re struggling to find your name, here are a few things that helped me (before I made the correlation above).

I played online making mock business cards, and typed in the different renditions of my name to see how they’d look and feel.

I played on my website and typed in the different names to “preview,” once again seeing how they looked and felt to me.

I made book covers and typed the names on.

I took out paper and signed the names.

All of these playful name-games helped me to feel the energy of each name in the different places and find which one felt true to me.

You get to choose.

Prince. Madonna. Lady GaGa. Meg Ryan. Bruno Mars. Marilyn Monroe. J.K. Rowling. All chose. The list goes on! It is fun to look and see all the stage and pen names out there! What will yours be?

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