We all have stories to tell. But it isn’t always obvious. So, how do you find stories to tell? Good question, but they’re very much like coming up with ideas: you have to work hard to develop them.
I listen to quite a lot of podcasts, including The Gist from Slate. In their latest edition they interviewed professional storyteller Matthew Dicks on where he finds the best stories; he talked about ad a daily technique he used everyday to find those stories.
The technique is very simple, yet requires developing a daily habit for reflecting on what one does. Interestingly, it’s a habit that’s helped him become more aware of the interesting things that happen during the day, as well as the things that connected through various days and weeks add up to a larger story.
At the end of the day he sits on his chair and asks himself the following question:
If you had stand on a stage and tell a 5 minute story of something that happened today, what would be the 5 minute story you would tell?
He then writes the answer on an excel worksheet which, he says, helps him connect the dots of the larger story of his life.
Listen to the first 15 minutes of the interview to learn how to develop your ability to tell interesting stories:[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/218972545″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
Here’s another podcast with Matthew Dicks on how to tell better stories:[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/213547413″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
Bottom line: We can all benefit from telling stories, and then developing ones that resonate with people. Because if you tell emotional stories that are palpable, you can sell anything.