AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL STORYTELLING

A story: information structure.

 

A story is a representation of events. We tell stories to organise and process information we receive in our lives. Stories offer consistency, enabling us to understand the message, remember it and identify with it. We can learn from our experiences and pass them on as stories. 

Storytelling: why some stories work and others don’t. 

Facts, logic and form provide structure, so that you understand and remember the message better. Emotions are the colours of your story. To grab the attention of your audience it is necessary to tell both the events of the story and their affect on the characters. If you really want to move a person you must connect with their heart.

 

More than an effective story. 

The power of storytelling is more than merely telling a series of events. It is about human connection and the things we create together. Storytelling is about people and the relationships they forge. 

Stories can initiate a transformation, both for yourself and in your relationships with others. They create meaning, unity and transport the listener to another world. Stories challenge us to overcome our self imposed limitations. 

Storytelling teaches us about our ever-changing identity and how it is up to us to give meaning and purpose to our lives.  

Personal stories: stories about real people. 

Personal stories are about real people, people of flesh and blood, experiencing the inevitable ups and downs of life, people like you and me.  

The pearls in your personal story. 

Our brains are wired for story. We are all good at telling literal stories yet the system runs wild when we enter the domain of emotions. Emotions are seen as uncomfortable and inconvenient, something to endure or avoid. They are scary and intangible.

Emotions are essential impressions of the world and your relation to that world. Emotions give meaning to your life and let you know what is important to you, they are the pearls of your story. This is why emotions are important to successfully deliver your message. By telling about your own emotional challenges you build a connection with your audience. It creates space for others to identify and empathise with you. Once you have established a connection, you can influence their perception of the world and take them on a journey. You build trust one step at a time through showing your vulnerabilities and letting your audience know you are human too. 

 

The power of autobiographical storytelling. 

 

The hero. The villain. The challenge. Every inspiring story needs them, they are also present in your life story. 

 

We tell stories about ourselves on a daily basis. Most of the time we are not aware how we create and affect our life story, how we become the story that we tell ourselves. Autobiographical storytelling helps you to connect to your story enabling you to become more consciously the creator and protagonist of your life story.    

The main goal of autobiographical storytelling is to become aware of both your role as the protagonist in your life and the role of the writer. You experience and create your life experiences. It is possible to continuously re-write, complement and edit your inner story just like a script. You can actively create the life you dream of. 

 

The first step in autobiographical storytelling is to explore your story so far. Who are the heroes and villains and who/what is creating tension and conflict? What is important to you? Which life lessons are hidden in your narrative? Who do you aspire to be? 

 

Autobiographical storytelling helps you to no longer live as a spectator on the sidelines. You choose your adventures. You accept the challenges in front of you and deal with your emotions so that you can develop your skills, talents and potential. 

 

Emotion and ratio become balanced when you shape your story. 

 

Once you get to know yourself better you are able to tell the story you want. You know the message of your story and speak from the heart. During the process you learn to distinguish the main storyline and side-quest enabling you to convey an effective and efficient story. Form, structure and facts, the ratio supports the heart of your story: your message. 

Communicating your life story.

 

By looking at your life story in this way, you learn lessons about yourself that you won’t find in a book. You can use these experiences and lessons to connect to your audience in an authentic way. Telling your life story gives meaning to both your life and that of others. It can motivate people to get involved and commit to a project or product that is of value to them.