Your Personal Story Has The Power To Heal, Influence, Engage & Inspire
I recently attended Jeff Goins’ Tribe Writers conference in Nashville, TN and loved hearing storytelling coach, Marsha Shandur speak about the power of personal story.
You have a story inside you. Many stories, in fact.
Great power resides within your personal story.
People don’t want to hear just any story. They want to hear yours. When you share your personal story honestly and vulnerably, you have the power to heal your wounds, and in turn, heal the world.
Personal stories also inspire and engage through emotional connection. Like a spider web, your stories unite you with others who have similar life experiences. With those who walk the same path and share in your journey.
Your personal story makes you memorable. After all, a memory is just a moment in time that has an emotion attached to it. As Maya Angelou reminds us, people will forget what you said, they will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel. This is the emotional power of your personal story.
The Right Time To Tell Your Story
What’s the story burning inside your heart? Are you ready to tell it? Or is still simmering inside as you process this event in your life?
It’s best to tell our stories once we’ve processed them emotionally and experienced self-healing first. Once we’ve done this and released the emotions tied to these past events, our stories bring meaning and purpose to our life. Necessary self-healing closes these old emotional wounds when we share our story to help others.
Processing our emotional responses first protects us from painful comments and personal attacks, so it’s best to wait to share your story once you are at peace with the past.
My Personal Story
It took me many years to write my first memoir, The Way Gargoyles Play, because these events in my life were so difficult for me to overcome and rise above. Through the love and loss of my family, I learned how to conquer fear, shame, grief, and guilt.
Ironically, I was a very strong-willed courageous child who had little fear or hesitation. Being the oldest sibling, I happily assumed the responsibility of taking care of my younger brothers who were five and ten years younger than me respectively.
I grew up in an Italian family full of rambunctious boys, loud talkers (yes, I’m one of them), delicious food, and my grandmother’s joyful laughter. Life was good. But then one day, all of that changed.
After tragically losing my middle brother in 1994, my dad in 2008, and my youngest brother in 2015, my life shattered around me. My mental strength and courage were nowhere to be found. I experienced overwhelming fear and anxiety after the loss of the last male in my family.
Clearly, I was stuck and very afraid. I finally reached a point where I knew I had to ask for help to get through this loss in my life.
The compassion of a counselor breathed life into my soul again and helped me heal over the course of the following year.
Finally, in 2016, I knew that I was in place in my heart where I could share my story to inspire and heal others who have suffered similar losses. I reclaimed my courage and happiness in the bravery of sharing my truths.
Since publishing my book, I’ve had dozens of people reach out to tell me how my story has helped them in their journey. I am forever connected to them through our shared experiences.
“Stories are amazing and powerful because they can resonate with people depending on their needs and experiences and speak truths we need to hear in that moment in time.” ~Sue Monk Kidd
This is the power that resides within our personal stories. They teach us about joy, sadness, anger, deception, and triumph. And they connect us emotionally to others who share in the same collective human experience.
What are the stories that burn inside of you? How have your life experiences defined the person you are today? How can you tell your stories in a way that lights the path for others who are traveling the same journey?
If you want to influence, inspire and lead with your authentic voice, you must start by honestly telling your personal story. When you are ready, I’m here to help you discover and share your story in a way that creates impact and makes you and your message memorable.
“People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories, and magic.” ~Seth Godin