When was the last time you shared a personal story with other younger members of your family?  People of all ages are universally curious about the events that happened before they were born and also those events that provide context for things they didn’t understand growing up.

Here’s some best practices for storytelling:

1.) Decide how the story will begin and where it will end.  Good stories have a natural arc.  First we were “here”, something happened and now we are “there”.

2.) Know your reason for telling the story.  Is it to:  inspire, educate, warn, demonstrate love, provide context, entertain etc.

3.) Keep only essential details and refine content for age appropriate understanding.

4.) Tell positive stories and connect the story to something relevant to your listener.  For example:  “That’s why Grandpa always offers to buy you books….”

5.) Collect and tell funny stories.  People feel special when they are remembered through story and your listener will begin to feel connected and understand how they too are now part of the family story, giving them warm fuzzies of belonging.

Storytelling is ancient and powerful that is why we produce a show called Expressing Motherhood where stories of motherhood are shared.