Unlocking the Power of Small Stories

Updated: Apr 21


In Episode #17 of the Power Your Platform Podcast, we dig into the power of small stories, and talk about how we can unlock the potential of ordinary teaching moments.



Because let’s face it, we’ve all been impressed by the history-changing stories of women like Harriet Tubman, Amelia Earhart and Laura Secord.


But the truth is, that small stories matter too. And they matter in a big way.


And here’s the thing: we’re surrounded by small stories every day of our lives.


Of course, since we move through our lives at such a breakneck speed, we often don’t take the time to notice the small stories because we’re so distracted by so many other things. Now some of these things could actually be tragedies or crises in our lives which obviously demand our full attention.

But most often, we’re NOT distracted by the big stuff. We’re distracted by, well, pretty much everything. It could be a notification on our phone or it could be the fact that we’re trying to multitask and juggle three or four activities at once.


If you’ve never seen this in action, by the way, just attend a child’s soccer game and keep your eye on the parents who are answering emails while cheering on the home team while also chatting with the other soccer parents about who’s turn it is next week to bring the popsicles. And yes, I may be speaking from personal experience here.


So how can we flip this script? How can we start paying attention to the amazing moments all around us and giving them our full attention? Because when we do, that’s when the stories -- and the lessons they teach -- come into focus.

And here’s the tool we can use to to do it. It’s called the Story NET and it’s a simple strategy for catching the everyday stories in your life before they pass you by.


NET stands for Notice Examine and Takeaway.


NOTICE


Without paying attention to the details of our lives, we’ll never notice the knowledge nuggets along the way. So it’s important that we to set our intentions at the start of every day to be mindful and notice the people, the places and experiences that come our way.


EXAMINE


What are the types of things we notice when we take time to examine the stories that surround us? We probably notice what’s visible to the eye, as well as the emotions of the story, not to mention the story arc (beginning, middle, end).


TAKE AWAY THE KEY LESSONS


What are the takeaways you can spot in the stories you’ve collected? The great stories – the ones worth sharing with others --- will have some sort of a lesson, a reminder or an aha moment that you can share. Whatever it is, keep it simple and state it clearly so your audience isn’t confused about what the takeaway is, and how they can apply it to their own life. When you do, your story collection will be in the perfect position to make a real impact.


Happy story catching!

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