I walked down our long street in a bubble gum long sleeve dressy shirt. The day had finally come to pull a suitcase full of freshly printed books Pebbles in the Pond: Transforming the World One Person at a Time. It was my day to step up and out. But my head was full of “monkey talk.” How many of those RSVP’s would show up? Would I have an audience? Would I manage to honor my Story in the way it needed to show up? Would I truthfully give Voice to my experience in a way that I would honor the truth? So many “what-if’s!”
I arrived at the library 20 minutes before “show time.”
And yes! I had a small trickle of people following me into the room – I was the Story leader!
I’m a lover of story and I love gathering stories and giving voice to other peoples’ Stories. As a writer and a storyteller, I strive to bring these worlds together.
“I am here to share my truth. My story is about finding my Israeli-American tribe. I am grateful to you for being a witness to that.”
Sharing your personal Story either by introducing your business and yourself using video or via a storytelling performance is the highest level of sharing you can possibly do with your clients and the world.
There are several very strong and compelling reasons as to why you should share your Story.
1. When you share of yourself in your Story, you model generosity from the highest level. When you share your Story, you share your life-changing message. There are hungry souls out there who need your message, RIGHT NOW! Therefore, your Story is NOT yours to keep. It is to be shared with the rest of the world. Storytelling is a sacred a act of sharing.
2. When you allow yourself to step up and out, you give “voice to the voiceless” – or, the people you help, heal and serve with your Story.
You see, many people silence their experiences for years. They silence them out of fear, doubt, pain, embarrassment. And then, over the years, they “tell” themselves a different Story of what happened, how they felt, etc. And invariably, the real juicy emotional story gets silenced – never had a chance to be heard. This leads me to the next point.
3. But then, there’s another powerful reason for sharing your story. It has to do with seeing yourself in somebody else’s Story.
A week after stepping up and out with my Story, I decided to listen to the MP3. I listened to how I described my fig trees as “green peach fuzz with the fruit swirling in their magenta juices.” I described my mother who waved a green woolen sweater out of worry when I left her at JFK in August 1990 on my way to volunteering for the Israeli army.
I put myself in my audience’s shoes and I realized something very powerful:
By sharing my own Story, it’s not just my Mom, my kibbutz home and backyard my audience sees, but their own Mom and home.
You see, your audience will see themselves and their own lives in YOUR story. In addition, they will also see…
the young child in themselves.
the young adult in themselves.
How powerful is that?
After stepping up and out, my audience wanted to know more. Much more. They asked me questions. They shared their own Stories with strangers. They talked about growing up in foreign countries and the challenge of “living on two cultural seats.”
Two women invited me to their homes for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, where around the table, we continued to weave stories and yummy food. One woman told us one of many stories of surviving the Holocaust while another woman told us about how one little African-American child who had witnessed many family murders in Alabama in the 60’s, asked to teach her “the 10 commandments.”
When I heard her tell this heart-breaking story, I immediately began to connect to the child in me seeking guidance, compassion and love from my own mother.
This is the ripple effect that I am referring to and you will come to experience this magical miracle as you too, share your Story – one person at a time.
Need more help?
If you want to learn how to step up and step out using your personal storytelling power, I am in the process of working on a 5 week home study program with a coaching support component in place designed to give voice to your Story. This program is based on my book, Giving Voice to Voiceless: A 5 Step Program to Transforming Your Business and Life in Story. There are 5 weekly modules – each module focuses on a different aspect of creative storytelling – there are audios, videos, visualizations and journal prompts – designed to activate the creative minded storyteller from within. If you would like to be put on the mailing list for updates about this unique program, please let me know in the comment box. Thanks!