Why do we love to go to the movies, watch TV, read a book, go to a play, or even listen to some songs? We tell ghost stories around the campfire, we recite fairytales to our children and swap fishing lies at the boat ramp. People tell stories. The people who are especially good at telling a story are and always have been some of the most valued members of human societies. It doesn’t matter if you’re Steven Spielberg or the best storyteller in your cave; people want to hear a good story.
Do you share your family stories with your children? Will your children know who their ancestors were? Mr. Spielberg probably isn’t going to make a blockbuster new movie about you, so maybe you better get busy. And if you don’t know the family stories, you better start learning them quick because they fade away with the passing generations unless someone thinks to preserve them.
Did you ever really consider the power of your words? People will remember all of their lives some of the things you say to them – good or bad, your words can be etched on their hearts forever. Will they always recall your clothes or the car you drove? Unless you drive a Pinto, probably not. But tell someone how much they mean to you, or what you learned from them, and they will never forget it.
In case you think I’m a little obsessive about the power of words, think about this: what you say and how you say it (and what you don’t say) reveal the most transparent window into your soul. Your approachability, your integrity, your status and your sweetness are all apparent in your choice of words. You might live in the biggest house in town, but if you say, “I’m going to the
li-bary to pick me up a book”, people are going to wonder from whom you inherited the big house. Like it or not, we are judged by our words.
So tell your story. Share it with the ones you care about. I’ve heard that you are what you eat, but I think we are the words we choose.