When I first started keeping a journal in 1985, I had not anticipated its profound impact. By simply recording miniature stories of my daily drama, I unknowingly conjured to life a supportive, consistent voice for the interpretations of my experience. This compassionate narrator offered me a sense of friendship with myself, which was both powerful and healing. It allowed me to connect even the smallest details of my day to a larger, more meaningful story, filled with adventure and purpose. I imagine this is what Anne Frank experienced when she wrote of her own diary, “So far, you truly have been a source of great comfort to me … and I can hardly wait for moments when I can write in you.”
In this episode, my guest is Stephen Van Vugt, IT Manager, singer, Toastmaster, storyteller, and a long-time friend of Write4Life. Steve has spent years telling stories for museums, charitable foundation events, and storytelling concerts. Twice, he organized a World Storytelling Day Concert for his hometown storyteller’s guild in Ontario, Canada. I enjoyed learning more about him, and the role that storytelling plays in creating a connection with our community, our work, our culture, and ourselves. (JournalTalk, Episode #62, November 11, 2015)
Exclusive Offer for JournalTalk Listeners: In this episode, Stephen generously offers JournalTalk listeners a special audio file he’s recorded, of a story called “Untold Stories,” which underscores the importance of each person sharing their own stories. Listen to the podcast for details on how to receive this for free.
Additional Resources on Storytelling: I have been enjoying these other resources which emphasize the power of storytelling:
- Remapping Your Mind: The Neuroscience of Self-Transformation through Story. This book has wonderful examples and instructions for healers to help clients find healing through stories.
- Here are some video clips from a recent International Storyteller’s Festival.
- This podcast series by NPR is one of my all-time favorites. They find the most interesting topics, and relay information through the creative use of story: Radio Lab
- This podcast is a collection of true stories told live, on stage, in front of an audience. Some are amazing, others are frightful. All are entertaining. Each segment usually has a theme: The Moth
To Listen to this week’s JournalTalk: Click on the “play” button > at the top of this page.