How to Tell Juicy Stories
How do you tell a story so juicy your audience is left with their mouths watering like they’re gazing at a red, ripe strawberry?
Well, there are three keys to creating captivating and juicy stories.
Stories are naturally juicy when they are …
Let’s go through them one at a time, shall we?
Make your Story Personal
First, share something personal from your own life. You are a fascinating creature. When you reveal more dimensions of your life to an audience, you become more real, more human. You are more relatable.
How to gather life stories? You can make a timeline and divide your life into childhood, teen years, and adulthood. Then start combing through those time periods for memories. Let them arise without editing. Be spontaneous and note whatever comes to you.
Another way to trigger a story is to think of major life events. Graduations, holidays, birthdays, celebrations of any kind qualify for this list. A first date is an example, or a first anything for that matter. People love “firsts.”
You can look for specific obstacles or times when you overcame a challenge. Also, think about all the joyous moments in your life.
The point of this first tip of getting personal is to pick whatever comes to mind without blocking it. Let your life moments flash by like scenes from a movie.
Make your Story Specific
Second, be specific and describe details. There is a reason why we say give me all the “juicy details.” The saying exists because those detailed bits of information help us experience what is in the story. Whatever happened in that story can come alive for your listeners.
Be vivid. Engage all the senses so the audience can see, hear, touch, taste and smell all the details. Here are examples of moments that get juicier when you describe them in detail.
…heard my beating heart like thunder claps in my head.
…was choked by my own fear as it tightened its grip
…couldn’t control the nervous shaking as my body betrayed me.
… was cold, frozen in the moment, and completely blank.
You also stimulate emotions when you get specific. You help your listener feel what you felt. Could you experience the anxiety as I described those excruciating instances above?
Anger and sadness are other primary emotions. And, of course, there are those responses that can be more enjoyable such as joy, gratitude, and peace.
Look at events that made you feel mad, furious, enraged. What has been scary for you? Perhaps you have a public speaking story? What have been some of your losses? Also what are some of your happy memories?
The point of this second tip about giving specific details is to help the audience imagine themselves in your story. When listeners have these details they get to know you better, trust that you are real, and open up to your message.
Make your Story Inspirational
Third, be inspirational. Why tell a story if it doesn’t have a meaning for you or your listener? When you review your list of life moments, notice which ones make you feel more emotional. Does a memory make you feel sad? Are there times when you felt like a failure? Did you achieve a goal or have a breakthrough moment?
Your story does not need to be a long one to be powerful. It doesn’t have to be down and dirty or an intense personal drama. It could be a simple moment that hit you with some kind of significance.
Let me give you an example of a brief moment I had that was filled with meaning for me…
I was driving to my Essential Speaking workshop. On the side of the freeway I noticed a billboard that advertised a brand of beer. The phrase plastered across the bottle of beer was, “never let a genuine moment pass.” When I arrived at my workshop, in a few sentences, I told the story about driving by a billboard. I was able to relate this message on the bottle to what the purpose of my workshop was…to be genuine whenever you are speaking.
The point of this third tip of being inspirational is to offer your listeners an insightful message that comes from your own life experience. You are the example of what is possible. Therefore, you might want to motivate them to follow what you did (or didn’t do). This allows you to help them with their life challenges.
Applying the Tips
Try these three tips I’ve shared to create a juicy story. Again, here they are.
If you would like to get started now, then pick one of your life moments. Briefly, write down what happened. That’s all you have to do at this point. Let your imagination and my three tips to juicy stories guide you.
In my next email, I will give you the three common reasons that block people from putting their stories out there. Hint…it’s not about the fear of public speaking.
In the meantime, if you want help picking a personal moment to create your juicy story, Click here to contact me. I will help you pick the best moments from your life so you can craft a compelling, and meaningful story.