The Thirty Minute Blogger

Exploring Books and the Writer's Life, Faith and Works, Culture and Pop Culture, Space Science and Science Fiction, Technology and Nostalgia, Parenting and Childhood, Health: Physical and Emotional ... All Under the Iron Hands of the Clock and That 30 Minute Deadline

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Telling Your Story, Encouraging Others

We live in a world of masks and pretenses. We put on our public face every time we head out the door and into the world. We are so good at it no one knows who much we have struggled. No one knows how much we are struggling. Many people suffer needlessly feeling they are alone in their pain or their challenges in life. Everyone else all around them seems to have their act all together. The operative word there is "seems." It just isn't true. People need to know that.

We have to find safe spaces with safe communities where we can share our challenges with others. We have to be willing to tells others the adversities we have been through and survived (all of this is within reason of course ... don't reveal those things so personal they will do you harm ... use the gauge of what would I willingly tell a stranger while waiting for the bus). I recently had the opportunity to present the case of a child who struggled in school due to eye troubles at an early age. It was something that took more than glasses to cure. It was a two year process followed by years of catch up. That child always felt a little behind with a slow reading rate. But, his retention rate was high, understanding strong, and eventually he went on to be an editor, author and more himself. I asked them to remember this child when they were struggling and be encouraged. I saved the bit about it being me for last. Many people were both surprised and encouraged. I wear my masks well too, you see.

Part of telling your story well is remembering it. A storyteller who uses his own life story as his subject matter told me we all remember far more than we think we do from those earlier years. The trick is to start writing about a period in your life you wish to remember better. Start with a place (home, school, etc.) from that period and put down all the details you can remember. Move on to people and situations. He assures me the details will come, more of them than you thought possible. Use those stories to remind others we are all part of the human family, we have much more in common than we imagine, and we are all in this together.

Good luck. Oh, by the way, you may never know who you help or how much. Don't worry about that. Just keep telling your stories when appropriate and forget about the results. Just do good.

No comments: