How to Lead by Sharing Your Story
Every story has valuable life lessons as well as hidden riches. When it comes to leadership, developing your skills as a storyteller is essential, particularly when it comes to communicating your own experiences with others. Others have the potential to be inspired, elevated, and encouraged when you are able to convey the experiences of your own journey as well as the lessons that were learned along the way. A leader who is in touch and in tune with their own story has the ability to assist others to discover the power that resides inside their own narrative if they are able to harness this potential.
(This blog is part of a series of blogs I have shared over the past weeks regarding leadership lessons learned from our Ultimate Immersion Experience to Spain.)
When members of our management team traveled to Spain, we were well aware that our time there would be rich in opportunities to relax and have fun, as well as to learn about the country’s rich culture, food, and history. We were also aware that the leadership journey we were about to embark on would be action-packed and jam-packed with events, challenges, and experiences that would all compel our team to mature and take on leadership roles.
Engaging the team to go into their personal histories and share those histories was a significant component of the process. The times when we sat down together and told each other our experiences are some of the moments from our time spent together that stand out in my memory the most. These stories throw insight into how and why we are the way we are, believe what we believe, and behave the way we do; all of these things are what ultimately drive us. These stories shed light on how and why we are the way we are, believe what we believe, and behave the way we do. We discussed with one another the wonders, excitements, and joys that life has to offer, in addition to the struggles, suffering, and hurts that we have encountered. In the grand scheme of things, the experiences that we’ve had throughout our lives are the ones that have molded and characterized us. We were able to obtain greater insight and comprehension into one another’s life as a result of sharing this information with one another.
In order to effectively lead people, a leader needs to have a comprehensive comprehension of the backstory of those they are guiding. Not only how to communicate it with others, but also how to assist others in uncovering and investigating their own stories. Imagine narrative research as a process similar to peeling back the layers of an onion, with each layer representing a different aspect of your life. When more layers are peeled back, it becomes easier to get to the essence of what lies at the center of an individual. These are the items that serve as one’s life’s guiding principles and values.
Here are a few tips and lessons I am reflecting on when it comes to sharing your story, and how we shared ours during our Ultimate Immersion Experience:
- You may have never shared your story with anybody before. Don’t worry! Ask somebody for some of their time and just share. Share an experience that has impacted you or was a significant memory, and just speak about it. Don’t worry about how it comes out, just share.
- As you share your story, look for the lessons learned within it. What have you carried from this experience you just shared? How has it shaped and defined you? Do the results of this story and what you carry from it empower and serve you? Do they disempower and sabotage you?
- Don’t compare your story to anybody else’s. Many times, we fall into the comparison trap, wishing we had a story that was as action packed, adventure filled, or exciting as another individuals. Remember, your story is your story, it is powerful. It matters. It is unique. Own it and lean into it. Be proud of it and share it well.
- The more you share your story, the more you will become in touch with it. It will become easier to find, remember, and recall small details that will expose more of the lessons and treasures within. As you are sharing, allow others to dig into your story with you and help you uncover more of it.
- Practice makes perfect. The more you share your story, the better you will become at telling it. Keep it up!
Challenging and encouraging you today to own your story, be proud of your story, share it with the world, and use it to inspire and empower others.
Remember 3 things:
I love you.
I believe in you.
You’ve got this.
Now, go get it!