Kids are natural storytellers – but they don’t share everything either

Estimated read time: 2 minutes

kids are great storytellersKids are great storytellers. Sure, they may not worry too much about shaping the message for their audience, but they are gung ho about sharing their stories.

My seven-year-old is a great example of this. She stands in front of the family in the evenings and reads from her journal, which is basically a place where she documented her stories.

“On Valentine’s Day we did…” she shared. “Over the weekend we stopped by Nana’s.”

Like a public presenter she shares page by page, story by story. I ask her why she wants to share all of the stories in her diary? “Because I want to. But it’s not my diary, Dad.”

Her diary is another book that she locked with a key. “Try to open it,” she challenges me.

Her diary entrees are private. Her journal entry are public to the family (and anyone else who will listen).

When I speak about storytelling the question comes up whether authentic storytelling (in content marketing) means that we have have to share everything? Of course, it doesn’t.

Some things might just be interesting, worth sharing or don’t look the greatest.

For example, I took four pictures of my daughters. In three they are making weird faces – sometimes at each other. I share the one online and with family where they are smiling and actually looking at the camera.

Does that make the photo or my representation of the situation inauthentic? I don’t think think so. There certainly is a fine line to constructing our dream lives online while we live a completely different life offline.

And people question overly positive posts online. In early 2015, I’ve been posting a number of positive tidbits about the healthcare strategy organization where I spend most of my days. At one point, I received a phone call from a friend who asked if the company is really as great as I make it out to be in posts. “Yup.” (I posted this story, too, on Facebook as a follow up, by the way.)

Editing is OK and even appreciated by networks with short attention spans. Rewriting our stories online is a whole different story and I wouldn’t recommend that.

Live it first. Then share the highlights that others might find interesting or  can learn from.