How far would you go to impress someone? Would you step out of your comfort zone and even risk a potentially embarrassing situation? Finding those stories where we pushed our limits and then extracting those meaningful nuggets of insight is what we do here at the Story Catcher.
Through these tales – both triumphant and disastrous – we often discover the most poignant lessons that would otherwise be lost in time.
Let me take you back to a memorable story of mine; it’s a tale of a breathless county fair, a crush, and one terrifying amusement ride called the Zipper.
The county fair loomed ahead, bustling with music, fried food, and spinning rides that looped into the sky. I scanned the attractions, stomach already lurching. My date, a girl I’d been crushing on for weeks, turned to me with pleading eyes. “Let’s do the Zipper!” she said, pointing to a cage-like contraption flipping riders upside down.
I gulped, avoiding her gaze. Motion sickness and I were not friends. But I was desperate to impress this girl. “Sure, sounds…fun,” I managed.
We climbed into our seats and pulled the restraint bar down. With a jerk, the ride jolted to life, slowly picking up speed as it spun round and round. At first, it seemed manageable. But soon, we were whipping through full vertical loops at dizzying speeds.
The centrifugal force crushed me back against my seat as the carriage spun out of control. I clenched my eyes shut, willing my nausea to subside. Just when I thought I couldn’t take anymore, the ride slid to a stop.
The attendant opened the door. I peeled myself off the seat, legs wobbly as a newborn deer. I remember little of the rest of the date, only that the girl and I realized we were better off as friends. But I’d learned an important lesson – sometimes trying to impress someone can backfire.
My story’s takeaway? Authenticity always wins. Sometimes, we get caught up in trying to impress others. We may even momentarily lose ourselves, doing things against our nature just to fit the narrative we assume others want to see. But when we’re not true to ourselves, the results can backfire.
As a Story Catcher, I help you focus on being genuine and authentically reflecting your beliefs, values, and experiences. That’s the essence of compelling storytelling. You might think that your audience, whether they’re customers or colleagues, look for grand tales of victories achieved against impossible odds. But honestly, they’re looking for genuineness. They want to connect with you, not an image you project.
That dizzying ride on the Zipper reminded me how essential it is to stay true to oneself. And it’s a lesson I carry with me, not just in my personal life but also in how I approach my role as the Story Catcher.
Remember, your audience wants to see the real you. Show them. Through your authenticity, you’ll likely find that they embrace your message, product, or cause, or maybe they’ll simply grow fonder of who you truly are. That’s the power of being real and authentic; that’s the power of a genuinely captured story.