Words mean things. A few days ago Liz Strauss at Successful-Blog.com wrote an article on names, discussing how to put a label on what you do, the role that you perceive yourself as having, and how to come up with a good name. She makes the point that
Humans are by nature curious. We like to know things about each other. If we don�t find out. We tend to make up stuff to fill in gaps.
Words mean things. When we name a thing, when we put a label on it, many of us stop thinking. We begin to identify the label with the thing, and think the label explains it.Without a good name, without a good label, you create confusion or encourage perceptions that have nothing to do with what you meant by the name.
The problem, and the promise, of words is they compress a universe of meaning in a few short sounds. Look in a dictionary. Almost any word you pick out will require several other words to explain it. Then if you follow up with a search of the thesaurus, you'll find many other words listed that are supposed synonyms for the same thing, but they each have subtly, and sometimes blatantly different meanings, tones, and associations.
Words mean things. Names and labels are important. They are verbal symbols we use to understand and create our world. When you are talking to other people, choose the right words. They will understand you better and won't have to "make up stuff to fill in gaps". When you are talking to yourself, choose the right words. You will build the world closer to your heart.