Privileged to have been asked to speak at the launch of iwanttowriteyourstory.com tonight on 'how to be the best you'. Thank you Samantha Houghton and Clare for letting me part of your big moment. I wish you all the very best in your venture. Loved doing it and loved the feedback that my talk was... inspiring. My speech is below:
Your story. There can be so many negative thoughts stopping you from telling your story. You may be thinking - who would be interested in my story? What if people will laugh. What if my story is not good enough? Surely, I haven’t got a story. What would I write about that would be of interest to anyone?
Perhaps it is a lack of self confidence or feeling vulnerable and scared about sharing the truth, or as much of the truth as you can – after all our REAL stories don’t often have a Disney fairy tale ending where the princess marries the prince.
But STOP. Just think. What if your story inspired just one person. Just helped one person to heal, to be stronger, to be inspired, to learn, to have hope, to know they weren’t alone, to do something different. Just one person. How great would you feel? How proud would you be?
Now how would you feel if your story helped two people? Helped a dozen people? And more? Imagine, for a moment, the ripple effect of just one story. Your story.
In the words of Dr Seuss – ‘today you are you, that is truer than true, there is no one alive, that is you’er than you.’ We are all like an iceberg. 10% of an iceberg is on the surface and 90% under water. Most people only see 10% of us. They don’t see the 90% that we hide – the battles, the challenges, the sacrifices, the tears, the hurt, even the successes. That 90% is who we really are – it is your story.
Writing a story is all about giving. People who give have the right attitude. They want to know what they can do for you? Takers will think what can you do for me? Giving starts the receiving process….what you send out, comes back – like an echo. Your story can be your gift to give.
Our stories of life’s journeys, the ups and the downs. The dead ends, pulling our hair out, overcoming challenges, having learnings, reaching success, and finding our truths are the stories that others will be interested in. WHY? These stories help others heal. They help you to heal. They help others get stronger. They help you get stronger. They help give light where there may be loneliness and darkness. They inspire. And if they laugh, that could be a good thing, if they laugh for a moment and forget their sadness.
I once heard a story about a Cherokee chief sitting one night with his grandson in front of roaring fire underneath the beautiful stars. He said to his grandson… there is a great battle that is raging inside me right now between two wolves. The first wolf is an evil wolf and he tells lies and is deceitful. He is always angry, rude and arrogant too – he is a taker. The second wolf is kind and humble, brave and full of wisdom – he is a giver. They sit there for a while in silence and then the grandson says ’which wolf wins’. The Chief says ‘the one you feed’. The greatest gift you can give … is to be the best you. How do you be the best you? By letting people see the 90% of you normally hidden away. Be great and give in your family, in your friendship groups, in the community. It makes a huge difference to yourself and all around you. Telling your story can be the greatest gift you can give. After all, it becomes your legacy.
What is stopping you and how can you overcome this? Fear, rejection and failure are critical to achieving success, achieving your WHY – as long as you learn from it. Don’t let fear, rejection and failure stop you from doing anything you set your heart towards. After all what is the worst that can happen. Someone says ‘no’.
‘Congratulations… today is your day… you are off to great places you are off and away. You have brains in your head, you have feet in your shoes, you can steer yourself in any direction you choose.’ Wise words from Dr Seuss -It’s all about choice. Your choice.
Give your gift…. Your story…. Your 90% of the iceberg that others don’t see… See the ripple effect of your story…