You really do. I know I’m not the first person to say this or talk about this, but I’m a firm believer in it. I have also come to realize that most people do not like to share their story, do not think it’s interesting, or some combination of the two.
Which I think is really interesting, and sad. Sure, most of us don’t encounter dragons as we make our way to school or work, and can’t fly off to save people, or whatever adventure you imagine yourself in. But you are the only one of yourself, and your story will be like no other. You have a story. Maybe it’s not the happiest story – or maybe it’s not the most dramatic – but you have a story!
I’m curious which of these objections you find yourself saying about the story of your life?
I Don’t Know How To Share My Story
This is more a logistical argument than most of the other objections. Maybe you aren’t a writer. But think about your strengths, talents, and skills – you have them! Speaker, painter, actor – these are easy. If your talent isn’t so obvious, look at what you love to do. (And if you need help, I’d recommend “Quitter” by Jon Acuff as a great place to start.) I truly believe that anyone can tell a story somehow, even if how to do it doesn’t manifest itself right away.
I Don’t Know What To Share
Similar to the above issue, maybe you look at the story of your life and think that you have too much. That’s great! Try to find parts of your story that are applicable to the moments you have the chance to share your story. Look for those moments or threads of your life that will encourage others, maybe by drawing them out of thinking they are alone, or by giving them courage to laugh, or maybe even inspire them to do better.
My Story Is Not Interesting
This, I can say for certain, is not true. Sure, maybe a quick summary of your life sounds no different than any other – “I’m married, have two kids, work at….” But get into the details of your life, and there are treasures and glimpses of just how different your story is. “I married my high school sweetheart, actually. Been married for thirty-five years.” So now we have a thirty-five year story (and longer, probably) of the relationship of this couple. They have a story! Everything could have been fine, and they still have interesting tidbits to talk about and insights that they’ve had in their relationship. That’s a cool story!
My Story Is Embarrassing
I’m not going to admit and say that I could share everything about myself, including my most embarrassing moments. But surely you’re entire story isn’t embarrassing. Or, perhaps you are embarrassed to talk about yourself? That I can easily relate with – I have a difficult time talking about my book, and I love to share stories! Don’t be afraid to share your story, and don’t be embarrassed about it. And sometimes the best way to talk about your story is to ask someone about theirs first.
My Story Is Too Terrible
While this (hopefully) isn’t true for everyone, if it is true, my heart goes out to you. Some people don’t like to talk about their stories because they are painful. And maybe it’s even harder because you’re still in that storm right now. I understand. When you finally make it through, please consider not hiding your story, but to share it with others that are hurting and struggling. I cannot tell you the encouragement I see when others realize that they are not alone. You are not alone. There is hope.
Do you still struggle to believe that you have a story? Do you have any other objections to sharing your story?