In the old days of yore and in some of the remaining "primitive" areas of the world, we had and have more than one name throughout our lifetimes.
In many different cultural settings, a person would start out with a baby name, something simple and easy, or something which represented the person at the time of their birth.For instance, if a mother saw two hawks right as she was giving birth, the child might be named Two Hawks, or Two Hawks in a Deep Wood, etc. The child might simply be named, John's son, or something else that showed who's child it was.
As the people would age and grow older, they could pick up another name before or while reaching adolescence. For instance, by fighting a powerful and dangerous animal they could be named after the slaying of the creature, such as Wolf Killer, or Panther Slayer, or even something like Powerful Child. The name would be chosen after the fact to commemorate the event that occurred. Becoming an orphan even could change or simply add a name.
When the people reach adulthood, they go through several changes. Because of this, many peoples, past and current, have created types of ceremonies in which the old baby name is cast aside and a new name is chosen for the person based on who they are at this point. This name describes them fully, telling all who they are and what they have done.
However, again, as they go through life this name can change again.
The reason I explained this, because it gives information for what I am discussing on the topic as a whole. Personally, I feel names can both make and break us, however, I also feel that names are not the ultimate deciding factors within our personality. I think it is more the personal connotations towards the name and what it means to the individual that determines whether we are affected by it.
For instance, my full name was given to me by my father, and I was proud of it for years and got upset over people attempting to change it in any way. After a while, while I still remained proud of the name I had been given, I realized that I rather liked my name being shortened by a few friends, and as time went on, by everyone who knows me. I am comfortable now being called by either, however, my name has religious connotations to it. While I am not religious in any specific way, I can look to the meaning in such a way that it still holds meaning to me. The meaning it holds to me now, is what is important to me. To me it means I am myself, and that can only be taken away from me if I allow it. In two years, who knows what it will mean.