In the words of David Walsh, author, “Whoever Tells the Stories Defines the Culture”.
I also like to say “Whoever Tells the Story, Controls the Narrative.”
So who are you letting tell your story? Who is telling your community story?
It is essential for us to share our stories, and to speak our stories instead of letting others tell their interpretation of it. We share our life lessons, knowledge, traditions, and even our humor through our stories. If our ancestors did not share stories, some of us may not be here today. Most of all, share your story, because it matters, you matter, and no one can tell it the way you can…
Today’s post is going to be a little different. Instead of focusing on the mechanics of writing, I’m going to dive into something more important: you need to tell your story. Here’s why. For a lot of us, this has been a rough year, a tiring year, a painful year.
Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore, be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
~ Max Ehrmann
This resonates with me today. We all have stories…
p.s. Desiderata is the plural form of Desideratum and means “things wanted or needed”. ♥
Our traditional arts have been a way to share stories and we can continue to use our arts to help share stories in a cancer basics online course I helped develop. We use many handmade Alaska Native dolls who share about cancer and help bring understanding to such a hard topic; we are using our traditional art in a new ways 💛
Storytelling comes in many shapes, forms, and sizes, such as parables, poems, short stories, etc., and I have the honor of being friends with one of our respected Tribal Storyteller, Leader, and Culture Bearer, Wilson Justin. He doesn’t call himself these things but many of us think of him in these ways.
One time a long time ago, he was sharing a story that had an important observation about our healthcare and the struggles to access for our People who live in our rural communities. After he was done sharing, I said that his words were like getting hit upside the head with a hammer that is wrapped inside a pillow. His words continue to inspire, and continue to have us stop and think – he honors us with his gift of story, and his observations of life. Nowadays, when his stories, poems, and observations inspire me, and I now like to wrap them within an image ♥