That's why we witness resistance to standardised testing in schools, and why alternative therapies and medicines exist. Because the same solutions don't work for every person. Everyone has their own story, so surely they have their own unique set of tools to tell it with.
A couple of days ago, I told a story to a friend. It was important that this person understood the weight of what the story represented for me. Because I knew that if they understood the story, they could understand me a little better. In this way, I was marketing myself to this person.
However, for whatever reason, I rushed over the story. I carelessly let important details fall from my mouth as though they were unimportant, or else left them out altogether, speeding to the end.
And, you guessed it -- I got called out by my friend-- I did not tell a good story.
Now, I could make a list of what my mistakes were and how to fix them (which might include advice such as, “take your time, trust that the details are interesting”).
Instead, I’ll say: whether you're trying to impress upon youths the dangers of running with scissors or to share spectacularly brilliant weekend antics with your coworkers at the water cooler or to win your customers over, your story needs to make an impact at the personal level. We are all human beings on a journey through life.
And it is from here, that we must begin telling stories.
A story is only well received if we tell it from our own sense of truth, and with the integrity, time, and thoughtfulness it deserves. No “quick tips” or “lifehacks” here.
So, my advice? Take time to develop your story. Ask yourself, “what are the most important pieces of information I want my reader/listener to take away from my story?” And if it doesn’t tie back to you in some vital way, you need to re-evaluate. You must tell stories with integrity, and from your unique point of view. Because everyone's a little different but we’re sharing the same journey.