Updated: Feb 12, 2021
The world around us is made out of stories, from before we're born to after we've gone. How do you tell yours?
"Do you remember the neighbour from our old house? You won't believe what happened to him," says my mom when I pick up the phone. Most likely I have no idea what she is talking about but I'm curious. Stories can reach us in many different ways. Whether it's an inspirational biography or a gossip, I love stories in whatever shape or form they come.
We tell stories every day - that is how we understand (or makes sense of) life. We try to create a more or less consistent narrative about our life: our childhood, our jobs, our relationships, our achievements and our struggles. Sometimes we are the only audience for those stories, yet they are always worth telling.
Stories can help when it's hard to make sense of a given moment. Like, oh I don't know, the pandemic? We turned to creating tales (maybe future legends) of how we survived this time. What we did and how we came out of it, what we've lost and what we've gained. Those stories help us and hold us together, while sharing them we get a chance to move from individual to collective.
That's the thing - stories have power, a lot of power. They are one of the most powerful tools we were ever given. But what we forget is that each of us is a storyteller and it depends on us how we tell our story.
Scientists have been researching the tricky subject of solitude. The sense of solitude seems to depend on.. guess what? The story we create around it. When you're spending time alone, your feelings can vary from "calm and relaxed" to "sad and depressed" and the main factor is how you frame that moment. Whether you tell a story of "no one cares about me" or "I'm ok spending time with myself" can change your feeling completely.
They say some stories are bigger than life. I'd say some stories are bigger than storytellers. In the world where it's so easy to feel powerless and small, we have a tool that can help us makes sense of it a little more. And the best part - you don't even need listeners. Tell it to yourself. Shape your story. It is what you say it is.