Stories have been an important part of my learning style. Both sides of my family are born storytellers. Family gatherings are not complete without everyone celebrating their stories or experiences. It invokes a sense of pride in our family history as well as respect and importance. It also teaches you to be patient as well as to be a good listener.
It also works if you are an active listener. How can you gather ideas and insights if you don't listen to others when they tell their stories as well?
I try to practice storytelling in my everyday tasks. Whether I’m facilitating a class, hosting an event or even when just discussing my favorite book to a friend; I think of ways on how my audience will better understand a particular process or procedure by relating it to a personal experience. An anecdote that was shared can be easily remembered. It creates familiarity and helps in putting things into context.
Leadership Guru, John Maxwell, once said, "Use someone's story as a connecting point today." Encouraging people to share their stories is a great way to open conversations.
It takes a lot of practice to be a good storyteller. You have to develop credibility in order for people to really listen to you. It’s not just limited to having good ideas or thoughts but you also have to know how to properly deliver them to your audience. You don’t want to have a bored crowd.
One of the things that I always do with my classes is that I ask them to tell me their own story. It helps you learn who they are, what their experiences and skills are as well as how they are as learners. From there, you can develop your classroom strategies.
You can use this technique anywhere on any type of audience that you might encounter. You need to capture the attention of your listeners. You need them to react and take note of what is being shared. It doesn't bode well if your audience leaves without that spark of interest.
It’s very important that we share our experiences or stories to others. You’ll never know what we’ll learn from them. Interact with as many different types of people. It broadens your horizon as well as your network. It also allows you to be in the same frequency in order for you to communicate your message.
What's your story? Share it today.