Why do stories matter?
Storytelling is one of the most ancient arts in the history of mankind. It is an art that was taught and passed from one generation to another, and it will probably continue to thrive as long as there are people in the world. We need stories in our lives. They teach us about ourselves, they make us laugh, and cry, and think, and sometimes even take action.
Stories are a powerful thing. Stories have power over us because they are made of the raw materials of our lives as human beings: love, hate, passion, conflict, competition, adventures, cruelty and kindness, overcoming obstacles and challenges, the victory of the mind and soul over matter and coercion, resourcefulness and wisdom, stupidity and innocence, faith, and more. Stories can helps us grapple with the darker corners of our being and celebrate the greatness of our human spirit.
Stories can remind us who we are, where we come from, and where we want to go. Consider, for example the Odyssey, a classical story of journey and quest. After years and years of wondering and facing endless obstacles, adventures and temptations, Odysseus is finally able to find his way home after telling his story to others and to himself. Stories help us preserve our past – or let go of memories that haunt us – so that we may shape our own future.
Stories are not merely about facts, but are not the opposite of facts, either. Rather, they are an effective way of communicating, in a more dramatic, picturesque, concise and inspiring manner.
Storytelling, or better yet, story-sharing, helps stories emerge; it is a highly effective tool to bring stories to life and unleash the personal and collective narratives of people, communities and organizations.
I believe change begins when silence is broken. Stories break the spell of silence.
Want to learn more how your organization can create a share powerful stories? Contact me: