There are a lot of fun aspects involved in preparing for a baby’s arrival – choosing a name is one of them! However, finding the right name for your child can also be very confusing and you can feel overwhelmed. In such a situation, a few tips can be helpful in narrowing down on a good name.
Walk into any bookstore and you’re sure to find at least a few books on baby names in the parenting section. Anyone who hasn’t been a parent may wonder what the big deal is about — what’s in a name anyway? But picking a baby name is a much more complicated matter than it appears at first, and many expectant parents spend several hours in search of a good one!
But why bother; after all, “a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet!” However, a person’s name is pretty important, and not just with respect to his identity. Research shows that an individual’s name may influence his self-esteem, academic performance, and even professional success. So, choosing baby names is a pretty big deal! So, the question remains: how to choose a baby name?
Tips For Naming Your Newborn
There is no single straight answer to ‘how to choose a baby name’ or ‘how to find the perfect baby name’. Some people turn to religion, some turn to the family tree, others may look for inspiration in Bollywood Celeb kids’ names! However, the following tips will definitely help you pick from a list of names you have shortlisted as potential names for your newborn!
1. How does it sound?
Say the name out loud a few times and see how it sounds, especially when said while speaking fast. If it is easy to say and rolls off the tongue, it should be okay. Long names with many syllables can be difficult to say, not to mention being a pain when filling out forms!
2. How does it sound with your last name?
There will be many occasions when a person is called by his full name, so it’s important to see how your chosen baby name sounds together with your last name. Unfortunate coincidences can lead to some odd sounding nicknames at school; it won’t take long for a girl who is named ‘Saba Nana Khan’ to become ‘Banana Khan’!
3. Can it be shortened?
Nearly every child is called by a shortened version of his or her name at home. Check if the name you’ve chosen is easy to compress, like ‘Sid’ for Siddharth. Names that can’t be shortened easily can get distorted when people try to cut them short on their own!
4. Is it too popular?
Most parents look for names that aren’t too common but often find later that the name they thought was unique really isn’t! You can avoid this by checking out a list of popular baby names of the year. Remember a celebrity baby’s name may be unique at first, but will soon have many copycats all over!
5. Is it too rare?
In the quest for unique names, some parents end up choosing complicated or strange-sounding names, which can lead to a lifetime of spelling and pronunciation errors! Common names with ‘different’ spellings can also result in a good deal of confusion later.
6. Is the gender evident from the name?
Some names are gender neutral and apply to both boys and girls, like ‘Bobby’. While choosing such a name is a personal choice, some kids might find it uncomfortable. It’s no fun for a girl to be constantly asked why she has a boy’s name and vice versa!
7. How do the initials look?
If your child’s name is Lily Olive Lance, her initials could lead to a good bit of teasing. It’s important to see how your child’s initials look, especially in this digital age when nearly everything is abbreviated, including swear words!
8. Do you have any naming traditions?
Some families have traditions when naming babies, either naming her after her grandmother or a maternal aunt. While the ultimate decision is yours, you can find ways to mix and match and insert a middle name to honour tradition while opting for a modern first name.
9. How will it sound when the child is an adult?
It might seem very cute to call your chubby baby Cuddle Bunny, but that name won’t sit so well when he’s attending an interview! Names like Pinky and Chintu are fine when kids are young, but can become a source of embarrassment as they enter their teens.
10. What does it mean?
Last but not the least, consider the meaning of your child’s name. You’d rather your baby’s name reflect a positive emotion or quality. Most baby books and websites feature meanings of names as well, but it always helps to double check before finalizing it.
Whether you’d like to choose name for a baby boy or a baby girl, think of a person you absolutely love or admire, even characters from a book! You have to remember that you are sure to get tons of suggestions from well-meaning friends and relatives, so be prepared! Some parents like to make a shortlist of a few names and then choose one after the baby is born. Whatever name you choose, be sure that it’s one you and your spouse love, and rest assured, your child will love it too!