Harness The Power of Stories to Influence People

stories influence

Does your organization have the courage to change the world?

This is a guest post from Galyn Burke, speaker at #INNO19 in New Orleans April 29 – May 2

Hi, I’m Galyn.

I spent a decade working at companies like Google, Facebook, and Pinterest. As a marketer, I learned to harness the power of stories to influence people.

Now that I’m a Psychotherapist, I’ve come to understand how and why stories have so much power over us. In fact, we can trace our meteoric rise as a species to our capacity for creative storytelling.

For better or for worse,

  • The stories we tell ourselves influence how we think, feel and act.
  • The stories we tell ourselves about other people influence how we treat them.
  • The stories society tells us influence how we navigate the world.

Stories impact our health and happiness

In fact, we are now capable of seeing the biological impact that these stories have on our health, happiness, and longevity. We have found that the narratives we live by dictate whether we bring our immense capacity for good (or bad) to the way that we treat ourselves, each other and the planet.

Because stories have the capacity to impact who lives and who dies, who thrives and who suffers; when they are toxic, we need to change the stories we tell ourselves. When antagonistic, we need to change the stories we tell each other. And, for our country (and the world) to surmount the global challenges that we face today, we need to change the systemic stories that run our families, our communities, our country and the world.

Changing the narrative to rewrite stories and build organizations

Luckily, we can change our stories to improve lives, relationships, communities, and the planet. As you’ll see from my talk, successfully changing a personal, social or global narrative is not easy. But, it is entirely possible – not just when we are young, but throughout our lives.

As the old saying goes: Knowing is half the battle. As such, ahead of my talk, check in with yourself and notice:

  • What stories do I tell myself?
  • What stories do I tell myself about other people?
  • What stories are my company, my community and my country telling me?

While it has become a buzzword, noticing these stories is a powerful form of mindfulness. This will help you to understand the stories that you live by. During my talk, I’ll provide you with tools that will help you rewrite the problematic stories in your life, to develop a more compassionate and productive relationship with yourself, and with other people.

And, I’ll provide you with tools to build organizations, companies, and communities that have the courage to change the world.

As I’ll explain in my talk, true, systemic change requires that we all do this work. As one of my clients explained after being bullied: Hurt people hurt people. Neurobiologically, he was right. If we hope to heal the world, we have to heal ourselves, so we can heal each other. Only then will we be able to tell compassionate and generous stories – stories that inspire us to vote for, purchase, donate to, and advocate for the well-being of ourselves, each other, and our planet.

I can’t wait to meet you all in just a couple of weeks! I’m excited to share a bit about how I’m changing my story, how you can change your story, and how we all must fight to change our collective story, before it is too late.

Until then, take care of yourself, each other. and your community.

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