The Importance of Story

April 10th, 2010
Written by Cindi
@deziner

“Work for you?”

The question hung in the air after reading Chris Brogan’s post “The Importance of Story in Your Life.” His question being  in reference to the task required to secure a free copy of a book he loves – “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” by Donald Miller. But it seemed to mean much more. Perhaps because the story of stories is so close to my heart.

Our lives are stories. We all have those memories, those moments in time that have become little scripts. We recite them at opportune moments, knowing which words to emphasize and where the pauses are most impactful. But it’s when we string all those chapters together that the dots start to connect, and a picture of a life comes into focus. It is a gift to be cognoscente of the connection of these chapters, these moments. To see how they build on each other and produce a whole, rather than merely independent vignettes. There are no coincidences in life, everything has a purpose, just like every moment has a place in the story.

But the magic of seeing your life as a story, is that the story needs to be written. And we each man the pencil, the pen, or the keyboard. That is powerful. Stories are crafted, they do not simply appear. Stories are also deeply impactful, they connect people to ideas in a way nothing else can. They can suspend reality or clarify the complex because of the ability of a story to take anything, and make it relatable. That means if your life is a story, and you are writing it, you have the ability to connect, instill belief, clarify and relate to others through your life. Sounds like a fairly important and exciting undertaking to me.

I personally have witnessed the power of storytelling. Whether it be the awe experienced by my young boys as we paint the picture of magical lands before they head to their dreams. Or the “a-ha” moments of discovery and understanding experienced by clients in boardrooms, when ideas and complex hypotheses are communicated in story form rather than charts and graphs and bullet points on screen. Regardless the scenario, it is stories that are a key ingredient to these experiences. No doubt. And we all know how we feel about experiences.

So to answer your original question Mr Brogan;

“Oh yes… it works perfectly for me.”

2 Comments

Comments

  1. I remember seeing Chris post and thought about writing a post. The difference is you did it. I love that writing is the doing part of thinking and your thinking makes me think even more, how cool is that.

    Hoping to find time to head back to Chris’ post sometime soon and follow the comments to other great posts about our stories.

    I guess the other reason it speaks to me is that almost every post I write is my story or the story of another I am intertwined in. I talk in stories, I sell with stories. I love a good story.

  2. I run into that a lot as well… I see something that moves me and have intentions of responding or following up and then life and time gets in the way, and it never happens. Hey, such is life. :) But I couldn’t pass this one up, because like you, the power of storytelling is something I feel so strongly about, and try to live every day.

    Thank you for the humbling comment that my rambles makes you think even more. Because honestly, if I could do nothing but that for people in this life, I would be very, very happy.