What are your most powerful stories from 2021?
When you look back you can not only celebrate your successes, and learn from your mistakes but you can use all the details from the past year as stories to build into your future talks.
Top executives need to step up onto stages on various occasions and give relatively short but impactful speeches to different audiences e.g. employees, customers, potential customers and shareholders to name a few.
Great stories are not only about successes and celebrations but expose our flaws, struggles, mistakes and learning. This is what makes a speech personal and inspiring.
Where can you get those stories from?
Well, you are just closing a year which is full of data for these stories.
Crafting talks that will persuade and deeply connect with listeners, you have to help to recall or dig up hidden stories that come from a deep place of your personal belief.
Trigger stories from your memory
It is not easy to recall stories from memory when you are a busy executive whose calendar is cramped with meetings and deadlines, who is all the time in a run. Therefore, it is important to slow down a little bit and reflect on your past year. And now is the time to do so.
- Think of people, who made an impact on you or vice versa, where you can find true connections with relational dynamics and any kind of emotions.
- Recall places of significance, which can trigger scenes, sounds and scents and bring back events and interactions.
- Dig for things by taking note of objects or items that have significant meaning in your life e.g. gifts, books, awards – any items you loved, or emotionally charged.
- Think of any symbolic meaning which can channel through via e.g. metaphors, lyrics, pictures that have a power of recalling some feelings and connections to events, people and experiences.
Create your own story bank
Although it can be a good yearly exercise, however, I do recommend to have your own little black notebook with you where you can log your daily reflections at the end of each day. By this you can develop your story bank throughout the year. Then you only need to choose a story from your bank with your audience in mind when needed.
Why do I think this is important? Because to be an impactful and inspiring leader you need to build onto your authentic and genuine self. And that cannot be achieved without conscious effort to reflect and recall on your past year:
- What are the most memorable events of yours from 2021?
- What flaws, struggles, mistakes and learnings you had in 2021 which made you shift or stuck?
- What are your most powerful stories from 2021?
- How can you create your own story bank?
“Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365-page book. Write a good one.” Brad Paisley
Remember you are the CRAFTer of your own story!