How many of you have had this conversation:
“Hi, what’s your name again? I’m terrible with names! Tee hee hee”
Well…buckaroo…being good with names is something we have to practice.
I used to be terrible at guitar; now I can play. I used to be terrible at cooking; now I don’t burn things. I used to be terrible at snow skiing; now I’m a card carrying Professional Snow Ski Instructor.
I’m not really good with names, but I can be. It just takes effort and humility.
So try this: next time you meet someone new, say their name as many times as you can in that initial conversation. Or, come up with a mnemonic to help you remember (Sean = Shaved head; Sean = Shaved head…). Or, don’t talk about you. Get past your follow up story and listen to theirs. Because I think a lot of times when we say “I can’t remember names” what we really mean is “my name is the only one I’ll remember.” Let me illustrate that:
Being good with names is a learned skill just like anything else. It takes discipline. It takes practice. But if you’re bad with names, it just means you haven’t tried yet.