I’d like to share a few thoughts as we pause Spoken Lives Online. For seven years, I’ve learned and healed and laughed and cried. Over 200 speakers have shared their stories through this passion project. I’ve learned three important things that I want to highlight.
1. Our stories don’t always start where we think they do. Women have come to me with their stories, and I ask an important question to get to the root of the story. What happened before that? And, before that?
An example of this was a woman who arrived with a story about being divorced and her touching sexual awakening. When I probed, we realized that the story began when she had breast cancer and after her breast was removed, her husband couldn’t touch her. Breast cancer was the beginning of her incredible journey.
2. I’ve also discovered that our stories don’t always end where we think they do. It ain’t over…’till it’s over.
Death is a great example. People who are devastated after the loss of a loved one can have re-births that create a life bigger than they ever imagined. This new life may be a direct result of a death of someone near and dear. We heard from a mom who lost her child to a medication compounding error, who has gone on to change the laws around reporting these mistakes in each province in Canada. She consults in other countries, now.
3. The third thing I’ve learned is that we must share our stories.
We heal when we share our stories out loud. When we write it out in our journal or if we are getting ready to share – there are insights to be found in the written word.
When we hear ourselves speak our own story out loud, we feel it deep in our bones. We release pain by sharing these stories. And, when we repeat our stories, we can discover even more layers to our stories. What did we do to take our own power back? We can change the direction of our own story by hearing what we did and understanding what we are capable of doing.
We begin to share our stories from our scars and not our wounds.
And that causes the people who are listening to have ‘ah ha’ moments and insights about their own lives. They are grateful for having heard our story and if we’re lucky, they will be brave enough to share one of their own stories with us.
“No suffering is unbearable if it can be seen as part of a story.”
Isak Dinesen, Author – Out of Africa
I’ll continue to share my lingering thoughts monthly through this newsletter, and we will celebrate Spoken Lives with a Silver Linings Gala when our audience feels safe to gather as a large group again.
I will turn my attention to building Grow at Your Pace, a boutique (online) learning platform where experts will share transformational courses to enrich people’s lives. The first will be Your Applause Academy, a three part course, teaching others how to launch (Start, Grow, Earn) their own speaker or storytelling series. I will also let you know when more courses are posted.