Too many people don’t think they’re interesting enough to tell incredible stories or that storytelling is a “natural ability” they don’t have. The truth is anyone can become an excellent storyteller with the right tools and commitment to practicing. If you’re a business professional or executive who wants to tell better stories but doesn’t know where to start, here are ten writing prompts to help you find stories already buried in your life:
- When was the last time you felt desperate? Did you get what you needed or not? In either case, how did it make you feel?
- Fill in the blank – “________ is the story of my life,” and expand on why. For example, “Turning down drinks at events is the story of my life. It’s constant and annoying because I think it’s odd we live in a society where something is wrong with you if you DON’T drink.”
- What is the story behind any scar you have (physical or emotional)? How did you get it? What did you learn after healing from it? How often do you think of it?
- What are three things the 25-year-old version of you would be proud of today?
- What is the craziest job you’ve ever had, and what did you learn from it?
- Describe a time when you needed help but were afraid to ask for it. What was the outcome? What did the experience teach you?
- What is the most beautiful sound in the world to you? Why? What does it represent?
- If you could meet anyone in the world (living or not), who would it be and why? Write a summary of how that meeting would go in an ideal situation.
- What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
- What do you hope to achieve more than anything else in the next year?
These prompts are to challenge you to look within for stories. Don’t overthink them. Write freely and honestly. When you’ve finished, think of how you can tie the moral of these stories into a powerful and universal message to deliver to employees.