Why you should start investing in your own stories to help you succeed!
If your wondering how on earth does telling stories help you succeed, you're not alone!
I wondered that myself as I started thinking about this weeks blog, but nonetheless it hit me during the week as I participated in trying to convey a message to a student of mine.
Often when I am having to make an important point or reference, I need to be able to ensure it has some substance behind it, in other words I need to be able to convey it in a manner that would stick in the minds of those receiving the information, and often the best way is to express your point in a story format.
It’s all well in good suggesting a point or stating a fact, and really anybody can do that, but if it falls on deaf ears or the key message is lost then what is the point, and that’s where I believe story telling helps not only make a point more meaningful, but drives action and realism, especially in the event of trying to convey success.
Now how do you use stories to help you succeed? Pretty easy.
We all have stories good and bad we can reference, don’t believe me? What happens when you catch up with family or friends you haven’t seen in years? What is one of the first things you’ll do? The answer- You’ll start talking about things you used to do. Before you know it, you'll start telling stories about the "good ol' days!"
My point here is we all have stories we can tell, often we only tell them when we need to like in the example above. But what we should be doing is writing or making a note about those stories, understanding and breakdown the key things as to why they’re so vivid and easily told given the right environment, in other words, what is the key message in the story we can use to help us succeed?
You see, stories often have a point and a message, something we can take away, but often our own personal stories are just that a story for a rainy day, never a story we can learn from.
You see, if you think of some of your own experiences as stories to learn from, rather than stories to one day tell at a family gathering, you'll be able to better utilise them.
If I take my own stories that I tell people, I would often refer to how I went back home to the Philippines when I was 18 years old, and how it was an eye opener for me, a culture shock to see how they live over there, verses where I live now, don't get me wrong I went over there for a family reunion and a holiday, but I came back with a different perspective. Now most would've used that story to talk about what they saw, how hot it was, how cheap the shopping is etc...(which is all true!)
But for me the way I use that story is to remind me of how to be more grateful. You see as a result of that experience, that story of going back to the Philippines, it allowed me to be more appreciative of where I am today, it reminds me to be grateful of how much my parents sacrificed to get their family to New Zealand so we can have better opportunities, and finally it reminds me to not take things for granted.
You see, we all have these kinds of stories, but we just need to see them in a different perspective in order to utilise them and benefit from them.
And if you're wondering, "I don't have a cool story to tell" or "my up-bringing wasn't very exciting or my upbringing was difficult", well guess what, no matter how small the story, or how unexciting your up-bringing was, you're here today! If all things fail, use that. Be thankful that you're here today, take advantage of that simple perspective, or how about how far you've come, even if you think it's not that far.
Truth be told, you will take more little steps to success than large leaps, and if using your own stories to help you move in that direction no matter how minor the story or experience can still be used as a stepping stone to success and evidently it can still be a movement in that direction!
If you want to know more about this subject, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org I am always keen to hear other people's stories.
Till next week!