Our stories are so important. Although it doesn't define who we really are, it does tell you something about someone. We have all been through so much in our lives that we seem to have patterns and themes that run consistent with our lessons and learnings. Abandonment, betrayal, loss, and tragedy to just name a few. Ever notice that you keep drawing in the same thing over and over again until you master it? When we share our story it is not about being the victim to a circumstance. Much like the hero’s journey, it is meant to show your courage, strength, and patience as you traveled through unknown territories. Just like in all archetypal stories, we have a hero, heroine, civilian and complicated storyline. We find tools that help us navigate the dark waters we call life and they're put through the test of time. Once we correctly use these tools, the death grip lets go of its hold on us and we are free to move in another direction. We seem to up-level like in an arcade game, with a new set of players and challenges.
I love sharing stories from my past, not as a way to just talk about myself, but to show if I made it through something, you can too. It shows at the core, we are all the same.
We all have obstacles, challenges, gifts, and rewards. By sharing them, it removes separation and helps us to see how truly fascinating life can be. We get ideas from other's journeys, and how they made it through them.
Throughout time and cultures, storytelling has always been an art. Sitting around a fire listening with the elders of a tribe as they described every detail of what they went through kept people engaged. It was a way to relate. Even though the stories were different, there was a beginning, middle, and end with themes built into them. This is how we learned and how our mentors taught us by example. Even Jesus taught this way with his parables.
I find it intriguing to listen to others' journeys, where they started, and how they made it through the rough times. To see where they started and where they are now tells a whole lot more about their strength, courage, and creative thinking. Also, ten different people will have had ten different ways to go through the same experience. That's what makes it all so interesting! The next time someone wants to tell you their story, listen. Don't interrupt, don't add to it, don't say well this is what happened to me. You will devalue their story and most of all, people just want to be heard as a way to show how far they really have come. So next time, take an interest and maybe even ask a question or two when they're done. It will surely benefit both of you. Happy storytelling!