In Episode 94 of the Power Your Platform Podcast, we're diving a bit deeper into a topic I’ve touched on many times before, but haven’t fully explored in this podcast until now. And that’s the idea of owning your story.
Because at the heart of building a purpose-driven platform is this powerful idea. And today, we’re going to unpack what it means to “own our story” and what that looks like in practical terms.
Brene Brown put it this way. She said, “You either walk inside your story and own it or you stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness.”
So today, I want to focus on what it means to OWN our story, and I want to break it down into three parts.
Those three parts include: owning your privilege, owning your pain and owning your purpose.
So let’s start with the idea of owning our privilege.
For this part of your story journey, I want to challenge you to sit down and write out as many privileges as you can think of that you now have or have grown up with. Because really, privileges are kind of like invisible ink. They’re completely unnoticeable until we shine a light on them and really take the time to reflect.
And the reason why it’s so important to own our privilege is that it makes us more empathetic storytellers. It prompts us to acknowledge the fact that members of our audience may not enjoy all of the privileges we have in life. And when we own our privilege, we can better recognize the systems of inequality in our culture, and work towards levelling the playing field for those around us.
The second part of owning our story is about owning our pain.
And we all have pain, don’t we? It’s a part of every human’s story, but often it’s the part we try to forget. Pain can come in many forms. It can be emotional pain, physical pain, spiritual pain, social pain or psychological pain. None of us make it through this life unscathed, that’s just a fact.
But there’s power in pain when we own it as a part of our story.
When we own our pain and recognize the power of sharing our scars with others, it can be transformative. Because others see the humanity in us and we recognize the humanity in others. And this recognition connects us to each other. And that’s what storytelling is all about, whether on a personal or a professional level. It’s about finding ways to build bridges over the spaces that divide us so we feel more connected, and more whole.
And that leads to the third and final step which is owning our purpose.
Because without owning our privilege and owning our pain, we can’t really own our purpose. And I think this is why so many of us struggle to find our purpose in the first place.
After all, our purpose often stems directly from those two parts of our identity: our privilege and our pain. The problem is that most of us don’t take the time to reflect on our privilege and pain long enough to recognize the purpose that lies inside them.
So let me ask you this: what are the privileges you’ve enjoyed in your life? What about the pain? And when you think about it, how do the two work together to fuel your purpose?
This is what’s meant by owning our story. It’s about owning our privilege, owning our pain and owning our purpose. Only then will we be truly positioned to make real impact in the world.