The crucial art of telling your story

“It’s quite gobsmacking to think that a story could be told for 10,000 years.” Professor Nicholas Read

Storytelling is literally as old as time. And the people telling those stories were around long before historians. Nicholas Read studies indigenous Australian languages at the University of New England in Australia. In this fascinating article by Scientific American he says, “And that these have been recounted.”

He thinks endangered indigenous languages are sources of, “.” Incredibly some of these stories are 12,600 years old, recounting floods and seas that were 30 feet higher than today. Information conveyed through the power of speech alone. There’s no writing, no technology. No data capture.

Storytelling is in our DNA. In her BBC documentary ‘Miriam Margolyes says,She thinks telling them and listening to them is a human need..”

And stories are everywhere. On our TVs, in the songs we listen to and in our newsfeeds. Robert McKee (often called the ‘), has dedicated 30 years to helping screenwriters, novelists, directors and playwrights tell better stories. In his 1997 book Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and the Principles of Screenwriting, he says stories, “.”

Storytelling is so prevalent that the word ‘story’ appeared 128 times in my Spoon-by-Spoon interviews. Stories help us to be heard. They help us make sense of our lives.

Tim shared his heart-warming story of how he and his partner got together during the lockdown. This is despite the fact they met once briefly at an event. In summary he said, “.”

Orla, told a different type of story. About work and how it impacted her health and encouraged her to take a different path. “.” She said these were normal stories that weren’t at all ‘strange’ to the people around her. But she felt differently and started to think, “?”

We use stories to help us understand our behaviour. John talked about how he felt compelled to take action, even though each time it made him nervous. “.”

Sara used her father’s stories to guide a decision about work. “She feltcompelled to carry on his legacy — wanting the best for his children and wanting them to be happy. “.”

Storytelling is so powerful that it can transform our lives. People shared their stories in Walter’s Alcoholic Anonymous group, “They have now gone on to lead successful and happy lives. So for Walter it was,.

Milly talked about other peoples’ stories that really helped her, such as Buddhist Boot Camp and The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. .”

Rory recounted stories he used to help others. As the first black man to be promoted to the board of his organisation he was asked to present at a diversity event. He was nervous and didn’t know what to say. But then it came to him. Just tell his story.

So he talked about people who had influenced his life..”

Adeola also wants to help others. I asked her how she felt about sharing her story with me. “.”

Just the small act of telling our own story to a stranger can make us feel better:

· Kathryn: “.”

· Zee: “.”

· Karen: “.”

It’s good to know in these challenging times stories help us make sense of our lives. Even as grown-ups, stories can still be a comfort.

Psychologist, coach, writer, photographer… juggling them all but often dropping balls.

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