Estimated read time: 9 minutes
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Let me tell you a story. I’ll promise it will be authentic. 🙂 The podcast below explains how stories are everywhere around us.
Audio not playing? Here’s a transcript:
Hi there, Christoph Trappe here and I like to talk about how stories are everywhere today, everywhere. One example has been my daily moments project. Every day I go to the website authenticstorytelling.net and I’d share one moment that I’m thankful for or that was kind of interesting or something great that has happened and I share it and usually, they’re pretty, pretty short.
Today, actually what happened, it’s a little bit of a longer story and we’ll make a blog post out of it here just to dive a little deeper and also use it as an example how stories happen everywhere. There are so many stories around us. Once your organization decides to have a content strategy and share things that are related to the mission, to whatever it is that you stand for, sharing stories is easy. They happen. They’re all around us. It’s really not that difficult. In fact usually it’ll go the other way where you won’t be able to have enough time to share all the stories that are actually out there.
Here is my example and this is also my daily moment for today. I was walking into a building in downtown Cedar Rapids. There are four floors in the building and since 2007 or so, I’ve lost 130 pounds. I try to be fitness conscious. I go to the gym in the morning. I try to take the stairs if I have a meeting around downtown. I walk to it, even when it’s cold. Like right now. We’re in Iowa. It’s still fairly cold in the middle of January here, but I walk. I walk into this building, and there’s the elevators. A gentleman is standing in front of the elevators in a suit, I think he’s wearing a winter jacket and I don’t know him.
I walk by and I say, “Hi”or “Hello” or whatever. I greet him and he says “Oh, hi. How are you?” and I say, “I’m great. Have a good day” and I’m on my way up the steps because I’m trying to make it up to the fourth floor. I’m heading to the steps and before I know it, he’s right on my heels and he says to me, “Oh, you convinced me.” and I say, “Excuse me?” He says, “You convinced me. I want to take the steps.”
I say, “Well, I always take the steps. It’s a good workout. It’s fairly easy. I think sometimes you’re actually in some areas, in some buildings, you’re faster if you walk than wait for the elevator. We talk and he says, we get to the fourth floor and he says to me, “Well, thanks for making me take the steps” or “Thanks for convincing me.”
I didn’t even know he was considering it, but the bottom line is both of us took the steps. We influenced each other. Part of the community and we had a quick, healthy walk up four flights of steps. It’s just kind of nice and then he thanked me for something that I didn’t even know that I had done or that I was going to do. I mean, I was just saying, hello. Great to see. Great to be part of a community. It made you kind of feel appreciated for something you didn’t even see coming, but as you can see there are 100 different stories you can pull out of this. This is the story that just happened, made me feel good. There’s my daily moment.
The other story is how do we if we’re trying to be half the community. How do we model each other. How do we copy each other, social connectedness, social validation here. I mean you see other people do something, you do it too. I’m thinking of some illegal left turns in the town I live in and what happens is everybody makes that left turn. The person in front makes it. The next person makes it. The next person makes it. Everybody makes it, right. It’s like social validation where everybody is doing it. We’re okay because if they’re doing, it’s fine. Same thing with being healthy. We could share a story about how do we share things, how do we copy things as part of the community. More people walking to lunch. Hey, that sounds like a good idea. I walked to lunch. We have a walking meeting. Somewhere, I think the Blue Zones project, which is currently in Cedar Rapids here.
They have stickers to give to people who have walking meetings. I have a walking meeting, not only do I have a meeting now and I am walking and I get a little exercise, but I’m also declaring publicly what I’m doing. Other people can see it and other people can do it. That story could be used as an example of you know, how do we share and copy things off of each other to reach certain goals. Again, as I said plenty of stories out there, so many to share and then how do you share them. What’s the best channel? If you hear me talk about, write here at the Authentic Storytelling Project about how do we pick the best channels and the best method.
Let me give you an example. It’s like 7:00 central time. I typically go to bed around 8:00 or so, maybe a little later. I go to the gym most mornings and I don’t have time today, tonight, to write a four, five, six hundred, seven hundred word article about this, but I thought it was kind of worth sharing and so, what I do? I took my podcast app on my iPad and I just shared my blog post as a podcast and here it is and I probably most likely will have a little bit of summary at the front and some links to the podcast app. This is actually a great app. It’s like a buck ninety-nine or two ninety-nine. I think it is for iPhone and iPad. I’m not sure if there is an Android version, but you can download it and you can record a podcast on your iPad or iPhone. Directly upload it to your WordPress site, as you know we like WordPress around here. Upload it to your WordPress site and there it is and it’s done. It’s easy. Now, if you do stumble, I’m not sure there’s an option to edit. There might be, but I haven’t figure out how to use it. I just try to talk and talk and talk until I’m done and then I don’t have nothing else to say, but there are different channels. If you can’t do a thousand word article, do podcasts. If you can’t do a podcast, do a quick video. Put the camera in front of you. Record yourself, make sure you look the way you want to look, but there are many, many channels.
Sometimes, maybe it’s just the social media update and you can do it later on. We schedule ours. I schedule my social media updates as you know a lot of times and there’s so many out there. Some of them, I try to make into a blog post, but sometimes it doesn’t work because there are so many. There’s so many stories. Now, one thing to think about as you’re thinking about stories, how do you run across these stories? How do you catch them? When I walked up those stairs and he said, “Thank you.” I thought, that’s my daily moment for today and then, I thought that’s like a blog post and then, I got here and it’s 6:00 or whatever it was and I’m thinking, oh, I was still going to do this blog post and I’m thinking, oh, but I don’t really have time to do this. I wonder if I could just do a podcast. Here’s the podcast.
The other thing that really reminded me to do it so at the here, what we’re trying to do, we’re not trying to over do it. We’re trying to do one blog post on Mondays. There’s talk about communications and then we try to do maybe one more on Wednesdays that is a little different. We do book reviews for the Corridor Business Journal and if they publish one of our reviews, then we will publish it on Wednesdays because we wanted to kind of give the Monday post some breathing room.
Also, on Wednesdays sometimes we publish our Q and A’s with other bloggers who we like to feature. One feature was Lyz Lenz, who blogs for the HuffingtonPost and I used to blog for yourtango.com and she blogs for a few other parenting sites and she’s based out of Eastern Iowa and we also talked with Cindy Hadish who has a gardening site and so, we want to highlight those folks and kind of get their takes on how do they come up with content and what they do with their audiences. How they measure success? You can read those if you like, but there are plenty of ways to share your stories.
The thing that happened here with my daily moments I was sitting here and I’m thinking, Oh, I haven’t written down my daily moment for today. It’s only like the middle of January and it’s become a habit. Every day. I started it January 1st. Granted, most people when they do this project, they just kind of throw it in a glass bowl and then at the end of the year they come back and they read the little pieces of paper. I have decided that number one my handwriting is terrible. Number two, I don’t have a glass bowl. Number three, not sure what would I’ve found all that paper, and number four, I have this site where I like to share things about storytelling and surely if that’s what I dream about, talk about, doing my day job as my hobby how I should be able to come up with something every day and so far its worked and this is today’s daily moment a little longer than most. Hope you enjoyed it.