Transformational Storytelling Series

 

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 Time Travel

Storytelling can radically alter an individual’s perception of the past, inform their present, and reshape their future if they are aware and open to the transformative effects. Much of the process of storytelling revolves around the idea of time and space. Time, as a linear procession of past, present, and future increments of experience, undergoes a metamorphosis. It becomes a dance without boundaries. Space includes all of the elements that an individual utilizes to construct their identity. Our perspective of these two factors can fundamentally alter the view we have of our lives.

 

Vulnerability

Storytelling promotes vulnerability, nakedness, and shame in order to heal psychological and emotional wounds when individuals and society are receptive to the cathartic effects of transformational energies. Storytelling by its very nature is engagement. It is reaching deep down into the soul and exposing darkness. By choosing to withhold our most intimate thoughts from ourselves and the world, in effect, we create fear, insecurity, and distrust. Through the process of storytelling, we will work together to foster trust and security among our companions.

 

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 Empathy

Storytelling enables empathy through the embodiment of the words we hear and speak. The back-and-forth movement between individuals and self forms empathetic behaviors that foster transformation and healing. How many times have you cried while watching a movie or were angered after reading a story in the newspaper about the struggles and trauma of other people? These feelings are known as empathy. We find a common frame of reference with strangers because we are able to put ourselves in their situation. Storytelling fosters an environment of understanding and cooperation because we set aside our selfishness in lieu of sharing.

 

Creativity & Innovation

Storytelling incites creativity by enabling the imagination of the audience, and is innovative by design because it validates unique individual experiences. Storytelling is a creative process. It is an artistic tool of deep inquiry. It cuts and chisels at the stone of our being in order to reveal a marble statue within our many layers of coal. It is also an innovative tool because it promotes reevaluation, reinterpretation, and reinvention from the inside out. “Thinking out of the box” about our lives in retrospection and introspection stimulates creativity and innovation which are social tools used to transmit our identities and social positions to others.

 

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Breaking Down Barriers

Storytelling uses metaphors, symbols, and allegory to communicate knowledge between individuals (human and non-human) and cultures. Storytelling is the embodiment of the human web of existence because someone had the courage to be vulnerable – first with themselves and eventually with others. Storytellers must quietly listen to their inner voice in order to hear the truth of their story. They must set aside any preconceived ideas of their experiences and allow themselves to be open to multiple worldviews, or be blinded by their own biases. Storytelling opens doors.

 

Honoring Subjectivity

Storytelling is intrinsically subjective. It brings the writer into self-awareness and honors their ability to affect the world around them. Our rational minds can accept the need for “objective” science, but our natural minds must speak from a primal and instinctual point of view. It never denies intuition and creativity, and upholds its own unique experience as valid. Storytelling is comprised of billions of individuals sharing their perspectives on life, themselves, each other, and the world around them. It is not a science – it is a form of artistic expression.

 

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Storytelling: Therapeutic Benefits

Storytelling is therapeutic by nature and writing about one’s Self in relation to a theory, experience, or belief is transformative. Great insight can be gained through the vulnerability that an individual places him or herself in order to relive and share traumatic events from their private lives. In dialogue with another person about these writings, additional growth and healing can occur. Therapy does not necessarily come in the form of an old man with a white beard. It can also come from a heart that is willing to be open to exposition and nakedness.