Stories play an important role in our human development. They help us connect, understand our history, and serve as a gift to our children and future generations.
Another essential aspect of stories is their ability to help us transcend and evolve. When we are able to move through a story, it helps us grow, and provides opportunity for a new story to emerge.
Stories can be beautiful and inspiring, or painful and devastating. Problems can arise, not because stories themselves are sad, but because we become attached to our stories and allow them to become part of our identity.
Recently, I partnered with Justine Williams, a certified coach from Houston, Texas, to deliver an event based on story. We sought to help our participants identify and shed an old narrative that no longer served them and begin to create a new one, to lead them into an exciting new chapter in their lives and work.
To get in touch with an old story that is holding you back, consider some of the following questions:
What are you telling yourself that is getting in the way of your progress? For instance, I have an old story that says, “I’m not a creative person.” How sad is that?!
What voice is telling this story? Be aware of black and white language, such as
“I don’t,” “I shouldn’t,” “I can’t,” or “I never.”
And, finally, what emotion arises in you when you tell this story? Is it a negative feeling, like self-doubt?
Begin to pay attention when this story arises during the course of a week. What do you notice? In what situations does it arise?
Just by observing these stories that are no longer serving us, we start to interrupt the automatic loop that runs in our heads and open up space for a juicy, new story to take its place.
A compelling story can help us broaden our perspectives, open up to new possibilities and begin to make positive change in our world.