Let me tell you a story…
No matter how many trips I take, I will never, ever remember to bring toothpaste. And so it is I find myself in Austin, walking back to my AirBNB from CVS.⠀
I’m stopped at the corner, waiting for the light to change, munching on some Swedish Fish from the value size bag I’d picked up.
As I’m waiting, a gentleman rolls up beside me on one of those Lime scooters. Bedecked in a full suit, he reaches into his jacket pocket and produces a cannabis vape, from which he takes a long pull.
We glance at each other. Eye contact is made.
At the same moment—the very same second—I extend my hand, offering him the bag of Swedish Fish, just as he moves to proffer the vape pen.
Both of our bodies react the same way: an upward head nod of acknowledgment, coupled with a quarter shrug, punctuated by a barely-audible exhalation, something like the shadow of a chuckle.⠀
Wordlessly, the exchange is made: I accept the pen; he digs into the bag and grabs some Fish. I hit the vape as he eats the candy. I hand the pen back.⠀
The light changes. We give each other the upward head nod of respect, more earnestly this time. He zips off.
Smiling, I continue my leisurely walk back to my accommodations.
Perfect interactions are rare.
Take the time to write them down, lest they escape.
Because that’s life, lived. Every minute a memory, stories made solid by the second. Forever unfolding.
Some of it is full of wonder and beauty and if you’re lucky more than a bit of joy. The rest is hard and painful and wholly unpredictable.
But, fuck, it’s all you get.
And that’s the lesson. I won’t tell you it’s worth it, because I have no idea. I’ll leave that to the positive vibes crowd.
I just know it’s all you get. May as well make the most of it, because it’ll break you either way.
Those it doesn’t break, it kills. In the end, it kills us all.
So when you’re given something perfect—a perfect moment, a perfect kiss, a perfect night, or a perfect, wordless interaction with a stranger you’ll never see again—take it. Take it and run with it.⠀
Then write it down. Record it.
Honor it with ink and paper and a tear or two.
These are your stories.
And if you want to have maximum impact in your life, your business, or for your clients, you need to learn to tell them.
How Storytelling Affects Everything
We’re experiencing the story of our own lives every minute.
Each change we undergo is a story within that story, all following a pattern.
Whether we’re talking about Dorothy Gale, King Arthur, or Odysseus, the structure and pacing of these stories is largely identical.
They follow a universal, transformational model: the Hero’s Journey.
This isn’t merely how we’ve passed knowledge from generation to generation; stories exist in this format because it’s how our brains work. ⠀
The same framework that governs stories is at work in the human psyche: it’s how we process change and emotion; how we break down, synthesize, and integrate our experiences, as individuals and cultures.
Storytelling is how we’ve evolved to absorb information, shaping the lives we live and the world in which we live them.⠀
Understanding and proficiency in this are vital, as your ability to tell stories governs how effectively you get your messages across.
For some further context, here’s a wildly incomplete list of some fun things you can instantly be better at by learning to tell stories:
- being interesting on dates
- talking to strangers on planes
- offering your services without pitching
- making toasts at meals
- the Internet. Just, like…in general
- coaching, consulting, and teaching
- building rapport with anyone who happens to be human
- increasing engagement with your audience
- persuasion of any kind
- identifying your own biases
- writing 3500-word content pieces people actually read
Learn the Science of Scintillant Storytelling
Your ability to tell stories sets the floor and the ceiling for the degree to which you can communicate with, connect to, and create lasting impact for your audience.
When you leverage the power of storytelling, you can enthrall, entertain, and teach your audience to a degree far beyond your competitors.
This has a profound application to both coaching and sales.
As a coach, the framework of the Hero’s Journey helps you to guide your clients through any transformational process.
As an entrepreneur, storytelling allows you to lead prospects through a sales process mirroring their own psychological experience. They’re not just buying from you; they’re making the decision to buy into their own potential.
Storytelling gives you all of that.
And today, you’re being invited to learn the ins and outs of storytelling from a lifelong devotee of the craft.
Throughout the year, I’m leading storytelling workshops around the world. And if you’re ready to ramp-up your impact (and income) through the world’s oldest and most valuable skill, it would be, as they say, highly advisable for you to come and check on out.
The next few workshops are in the following cities:
- Austin, TX – Friday, February 28th
- Toronto, Ontario, CA – Thursday, March 12th
- Boston, MA – Saturday, March 21st
- Kuwait City, Kuwait – Friday, March 27th
- London, UK – Saturday, April 4th
Click any of the links above, and join us for the Science and Sorcery of Scintillant Storytelling