The Simple Power in a Life Story
What did you want to be when you grew up?
There’s a story in that.
Maybe you’re still wondering. (I want to be Judi Dench when I grow up. Well. Judi Dench as M in the James Bond movies.)
That’s how a story begins. Make a simple statement, about something that matters to you. Or something that delights you. Then elaborate.
Do you have to tell people about your childhood dreams? Do you have to share your life story to attract customers? Not if you don’t want to. There are ways to share bits of your personal life while protecting your privacy. (People on my social networks know I have pets, but only the people I know in real life know their names.)
You get to declare your boundaries. You get to decide what you talk about, what stories you share, without sacrificing your “authenticity”.
The professional you will always have elements of the person you are when you finish business for the day. You don’t have to do cartwheels to make yourself seem interesting. A little grace and good humour is appealing to just about everyone.
Bring the best bits of you into the mix. Let your audience see the world through your professional eyes. Don’t take the things you do every day for granted. There are stories in there. Even the small ones can fascinate.
You might be doing the work you dreamed about when you were a kid. You might still be chasing that dream, which has become an item on that fabled bucket list. Or you might have fun and make something up — as long as it’s clear you’re indulging in that kind of story.
We all have that life story. What we dream about, what we missed out on, the fun we can have with “what if”. It’s a compelling connection point. Those stories are worth telling.