Everyone wants to tell their story, but who wants to listen?
I recently had a conversation with a friend where I threw some of this stuff out there to kind of test how it’s going to be received by normal people living everyday normal lives. By normal, I just mean they’re doing what everyone else is doing and are happy with it, their lives are fine and they aren’t searching for anything beyond that at the moment. More power to them, I’m not suggesting anyone change what’s working for them. What I am suggesting, is that if the same old story isn’t working for you anymore… there’s a new one to tell.
Back to the original point. When I started throwing this stuff out there he made it pretty clear both verbally and non-verbally that he wasn’t really interested in the crap spewing out of my trap at the moment. Fair enough, I kind of summarized what I was up to and left it at that.
Then he began telling me about what was on his mind… a new place he was checking out, a restaurant nearby there and how it was an added benefit because the company he works for does a lot of stuff at that restaurant. I gave it all the “courtesy ear”. I was engaged to a point, but the whole time I was giving off the same non-verbal signals he had. I mean I was trying to listen, but I just couldn’t help my mind wandering off because it had no interest in the story.
We both looked at each other at the same time and realized it. What was happening was a matter of relevance. What I was saying was completely irrelevant to him and what he was saying was completely irrelevant to me… at that moment anyway.
So how do you get people “into” to your story?
I think you need 3 things. You need a good story, you need to be a good storyteller, and you need a captive audience. I believe we have all 3 elements in abundance.
Since it’s your story, it’s up to you to get people into it. You can’t make people listen so that leaves all the other ways of getting them into it. The way I see it, it’s up to me as a storyteller to engage and entertain people to gain their interest. I don’t know how to use all those other ways of getting people into it yet, but I think I’m going to learn… because I LOVE a good story. I love everything about a good story, hearing one, telling one, and I especially love a new story, with new adventure about new discoveries.
I’m hoping all of this will eventually take form into one of those stories, one you don’t hear everyday, one that engages people to the point that they all start participating and taking the adventure with you. I believe it is the greatest story never told, not because it’s my story, but because it’s ours. It really is time to start telling our REAL story.
I already know this is going to happen, people everywhere are already cracking their own novels. Once you start reading the book that contains the story of the Human race, you won’t be able to put it down. One because it’s the most amazing story you’ve ever heard, and two because it’s not just our story, it’s yours.
In the world I see us moving into, we all have our art or craft that we have have perfected, it is our contribution to that world. Nobody works, unless you consider something you love and have absolutely mastered as work. I think in that world, my “mastercraft” is storytelling, I mean the kind of storytelling that shapes realities. It kind of makes sense, I haven’t been able to express any of this stuff for 50 years and this is the way it wants to come out. I have no background in music, painting, dance, sculpture, or any other art form.
My “craft” is Myth, making up the stories that both conceal and reveal what we’re really doing here. My “art” is Storytelling. I’ve been given the biggest story there is to tell, the triumph of the human race against all, and I do mean ALL odds. I’ve been given a captive audience.. who among us doesn’t want to know our “real” story? We’re all bound here dying to live it. The only thing I’m not sure if I’ve been given yet, is the master storyteller skill set.
Joseph Campbell was known as a master of myth and the “man of a thousand stories”. I’d love to tell a whopper that would make him grin from ear to ear.
I don’t really have any personal gurus, but he said a couple of things that were absolutely instrumental in helping me. “Follow your Bliss” and “Know your Tribe”. The first came at a time when I was in a spot, wondering if I should continue on the path I’ve always been on or opt for a “normal” life. It rang thru like explicit instructions for a crucial decision. The second also came at the right time and it was even more like direct communication, letting me know who I am and what I’m a part of. Out of context neither really means anything, in context, they mean everything. Like myth… pretty clever.