Written by: Carole Sanek, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Let me ask you this, if you are not telling your story, why aren’t you telling it?
I recently live-streamed 30 minutes of passionate dialogue on this very question. I was inundated with comments about my passion, about how powerful my topic was, and I hope I lit a fire under at least one viewer.
WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT FOR PEOPLE TO CONSIDER TELLING THEIR STORIES?
I asked that question too, and the answers didn’t surprise me. We are always concerned with how people will respond to us, and that was a top reason.
Then some told me they just weren’t ready to do it even though one person did say they know telling their story would help others. If I get one person to verbalize how they feel, I know I have put them onto the path of telling their story eventually.
WHY DOES YOUR STORY MATTER?
Telling it might be the best medicine you have ever taken. Getting it out there, putting it out there absolutely makes you vulnerable to people being critical, BUT what if telling your story saved someone’s life?
Let me put some oomph behind that sentence. WHAT IF TELLING YOUR STORY SAVED SOMEONE’S LIFE? Something to think about, yes?
FIVE OF MY BEST TIPS
1. Don’t start writing your story and put it on Facebook, certainly not at first. No, don’t do that until you have tested the waters, perhaps with little snippets of it. Putting your entire story will permit people to post opinions that may make you stop telling it.
2. Do consider starting a blog yourself OR guest blogging on someone else’s blog who writes about a similar story. You will be much safer starting with a blog. Blogs are usually read by people you are not friends with, and Facebook is just the opposite.
3. Start short; use those snippets to test the waters. This is not the time to write an entire autobiography.
4. Put your story on paper and have a friend you trust implicitly read it.
5. Keep notebooks everywhere, and when you remember something, write it down, send the idea in an email to your email address, or record it on your phone. Do not let an idea or a memory escape. Your story is important to you and to the people who read it. I keep one in my car, and I often pull into a parking lot to write things down.
WHEN DID MY STORY START?
I started to write my daily thoughts when my husband had a massive stroke and died 13 days later.
Yes, I put it on Facebook. However, I also only allowed a list of people who knew me for real and knew my husband to read it.
One day a friend wrote that I should be putting my daily thoughts into a book. It took me a year to do that. I wasn’t ready to tell my story, and I was a grieving puddle of tears often. However, I did make my daily thoughts public to the world then because I realized I was helping people.
The beauty in all of this is that once I started to tell my story, other story ideas came knocking, begging to be told.
Now I am writing a book about my brother and how he and I pushed through his HIV diagnosis until he could no longer push. I am also working on a book where people contribute their feelings about a certain topic.
Yes, telling your story can evolve into putting it between two covers and calling it a book. Why not?
Just start by telling your story when you are ready. You will know when you are. I will tell you what I found out in telling my story, people will be in your corner, people may identify with your story, and you will amaze yourself.
Carole Sanek, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Carole L. Sanek is a certified life coach specializing in personal coaching, with her specialty being working in grief. Carole is also an author, and her first book “Fractured” is with a publishing house in Chicago, scheduled to launch by the end of the year. Carole is especially excited that even though she was diagnosed 27 years ago with breast cancer, she wiped that slate clean and thrived on in her life. Reaching Carole is easy as she believes in transparency and authenticity and welcomes people to reach out to her.