Today I am thankful for… nametags

Nametags are awesome.

  • My first nametag was wrapped around one of my teeny tiny newborn limbs so the nurses at the hospital knew to gave me to my parents.
  • My second was likely affixed by a Sunday school teacher so they could easily wrangle me and the other spastic children running around.firstchristmasparty
  • At some point in school a nametag brandished a cubbie hole declaring a childhood favorite statement. “mine.”
  • One of my favorite was from my first holiday party at my first real job when I was only 22.
  • Before long nametags told me where to sit at weddings, gave me access to buildings, and permission to wander around conferences.
  • Most recently nametags prevented me, at several college alumni events, from exclaiming the ever popular, “HEY!…. yooooou.”

Today I am thankful for nametags

They remind me I’m not the only person in the world that is super forgetful. That I’m not somehow deficient, despite the fact I maybe met you once, and was likely mid conversation with another human being when it happened.

But my thankfulness for nametags goes well beyond saving face, and looking like I’ve got all the world’s inhabitants memorized.

I am thankful for nametags because they remind me…

names are not important

They serve a purpose of course. They are your unique identifier (assuming you don’t share that name with someone else in the world). But they serve a purpose when you need to get someone’s attention, and refer to them in a conversation you’re having with someone else entirely. But beyond that names are not that important because they don’t tell me who you are.

At best a nametag will list your name, maybe a maiden name, a year you graduated college, a major you never used, your employer, the title at your job… and even more recently perhaps your twitter handle. But none of those things tell me who you are. At best they tell me something about what you do.

But it occurs to me that a truly awesome nametag would tell me who you are in the truest sense if it told me WHY you do what you do.

I am thankful for nametags because they remind me…

who you are is defined by WHY you do what you do

Who you are is not wrapped up in your name or what you do for a living. You are, at your essence, WHY you do what you do.

What if your nametag displayed your greatest fear? your biggest dream? your dumbest mistake? your spirit animal? (kidding on that last one) What if it displayed WHY you were at that event.

I am thankful for nametags because they remind me…

ask WHY until you get to the real answernavy pants

Because the why is the only thing that matters. Why did you pick that college, that major, that class? Why apply for that job, at that company in that state? Why did you stay or go or try or fold? Why is the only thing that matters. Its the engine, your heart, that drives your choices and your decisions.

The nametag in his dress blues is faded, but I wish I could ask my Papa why he chose to join the navy in the heart of World War II.

So if the “why” is so important to me….

why did I say yes to a speaking engagement at my college last night?

Because I am thankful. I am thankful for every memory at that place that shaped me. The good and the bad. I am thankful for the people who came back to campus and poured their lives into me. I am thankful for the trust and honor that people I respect placed on my shoulders.

I wear a nametag not because you will know my name, but because perhaps it will open the door for you to ask who I am. And I can tell you, I am thankful. I can tell you why being a Christian wife is so important to me. I can tell you why I write a blog about being thankful.

And perhaps it will open a door so I can ask who you are.
What would you tell me?

thoughts go here... be nice... be thankful...

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