The art of storytelling in life, work and relationship

Even if you have a boring life, and spend all your time home alone, watching TV, and playing mafia wars, you still have something to share.  It may not be an exciting life, but it’s your life… it may seem less-than-ordinary, but it’s still unique in some way.  No two people on this earth are having the exact same experiences, thoughts, or feelings.  Maybe similar at times, but not exact.

Your experiences are unique and, therefore, valuable.
There are lessons to be learned even in the dullest of circumstances.

Yet, time and time again we leave out what makes us most unique.  Our Stories.

When you leave out your story,
all that’s left is generic advice.  

How many articles should I read that tell me how to save money?  That tell me how I should write? How I should manage my time?  How I should set goals?  Or how I should market my business?

Unless there’s a story behind your advice, I may forget what you have to say.

No offense to the generic advice-givers of the world,
but you have no idea how I SHOULD do anything.  And neither do I.

What you and I do know is what our experiences have taught us.  And my experiences have taught me that when what I create tells a story, it adds value.

You can tell a story without telling a story.

Have you ever looked into the window of your favorite retail store and paid attention to the visual merchandising?  Visual merchandising is an art form – one that I enjoy.  I’ve created playful window scenes while managing a children’s boutique and I’ve created romantic scenes while managing a Victoria’s Secret store.  Before you can even BEGIN to create your scene, you must have a STORY.

The difference between a good and poor window display is the story it tells.  It’s not about the product. It’s about the story and the emotion it evokes in the customer.  Bras and panties are not unique, but the feeling you get when you walk into a Victoria’s Secret IS.

You don’t have to tell your own story.

At the beginning stages of Google Plus, my friend, Aaron Wood became inspired to tell a story that he witnessed –  The war between social networks.

With over 200,000 followers on Google Plus and countless posters sold, I’d say Aaron has successfully evoked emotion through the story his artwork tells.

Telling a story you witness, or telling someone else’s story can be just as powerful as telling your own.

People see value in their own stories.

Why do you think people are willing to pay so much money to have something custom made or personalized?  Because they see the value in THEIR stories.

In my experience of creating personalized gifts for children, I see it all the time.  If someone asks me to paint a personalized gift, it’s because the generic mass produced merchandise at the mall doesn’t cut it.  It’s mass produced.  It’s forgettable. It doesn’t tell a story.

If you don’t tell me a story, you will have…

told me what everyone else has told me,
shown me what everyone else has shown me.

If what you create doesn’t tell a story…

it will blend in with the masses,
and I may forget all about it.