Each of us has a powerful life story! Writing that story down helps you identify the core values and beliefs that have been foundational to your success. It gives it a voice. It creates connections. It inspires. As Robert McKee says, “Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.”
The Myriad of Reasons to Tell Your Life Story
Telling your story will help you craft a personal vision that can capture your past and guide your future. It will create a connection and greater intimacy with your readers, allowing them to learn through your knowledge and wisdom.
We have all faced challenges in life. Writing about how you dealt with those challenges helps you feel better by dissolving the matters that sometimes have you stuck in the past.
It is likely to inspire others and help them learn ways to handle their own challenges. It will also demonstrate why life is worth living and will guide you to enjoy reliving the good moments in your life.
It is yet another way to stretch yourself. You will learn something from your own experiences, and you will teach something valuable.
It will make you think and sharpen your mental agility. Your family will cherish the stories and the memories. With each reading, it will bring to life a poignant moment in time.
The Form Your Story Can Take
Storytelling is the interactive art of using words and actions to reveal the elements and images of a story while encouraging the reader’s imagination. There are many ways to share your story:
How to Get Started Telling Your Life Story
The first step to get started is to take inventory and begin recording your personal and professional history and accomplishments. Think about what and/or who has influenced you most. Consider your most memorable moments.
What has brought out the best in you? What hurdles have you had to vault? How do others think and feel about you?
When you have assembled the inventory of your facts and feelings, reflect on what you want to say and why you want to say it. Start with the 3Ps – purpose, passion and personality.
Define the message you want to communicate (purpose). Identify what is it that you care for and value most, i.e., why your core message is so important to you (passion). Characterize how you want people to experience who you are – what people will think of you (personality).
After you have taken time to reflect on and consider the parts that you value and those that others will value, it is time to get started.
An easy way to start is to draft a brief action plan which will push you to hold yourself accountable. There are seven questions you need to answer in order to come up with a good action plan.
Create an Action Plan
1. What will be your first step?
2. What do you need to do to get started?
3. What is holding you back from getting started? What can you do to overcome it?
4. What connections do you have/do you need to make this happen?
5. What resources will you need to do what you want to do?
6. When will you have completed the project?
7. How will you measure your success?
Does this simple action plan work?
Yes, it does.
A friend was told me she had a compelling story to tell, but she was challenged with getting started. She finally decided that her first step was to sit down and write a single paragraph. She did that one Friday morning and before she knew it, the first chapter was well underway.
There are a few questions you need to address in the process of writing your story:
Is the story communicating what I wanted to share – purpose, passion and personality? Is the tone what I wanted it to be? What additional detail(s) would make it more interesting? What do I need to adjust? What is my deadline for making the adjustment?
Now, are you ready to get started?
How would you tell your life story in one sentence? Have you ever thought about writing an autobiography? Is something holding you back from telling your story? Have you worked out an action plan to follow? Please join the conversation below!