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How To Share Your Stories In A Way That Everyone Would Listen To You So Eagerly

How To Share Your Stories In A Way That Everyone Would Listen To You So Eagerly

You’re having dinner with a big group of friends, someone shared his recent experience and everyone listened so attentively and laughed so hard. While when another friend tried to shared his too, people lost their focus and he couldn’t even finish telling his story.

Why is there such a difference?

It’s not about their appearance or the depth of relationship. Because those people seem to be able to get the attention everywhere. What make them amazing storytellers are the skills they have!

Even if you are not a writer you still need to tell stories EVERY DAY. We tell stories to pitch to our boss, we share our stories with our loved ones, we make new friends by sharing interesting experience, etc. If we can master the skills it’ll be much easier to get your message crossed and better your relationships.

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This article will offer you several storytelling techniques. With a grip of them, you will soon become a good storyteller too.

Begin your story with a solid framework

Although storytelling is free and imaginative, a story should not be told wildly without any frame.

Instead, a good story should be told within a solid framework. And if you think about it, any great piece of literature or movie imbeds this framework:

  • The story tells about a protagonist, which means a main character.
  • The protagonist desires to fulfil a goal, or solve a problem.
  • There are difficulties, or more literarily saying, there are conflicts or struggles, blocking the protagonist’s way to fulfil the goal or to solve the problem.
  • The protagonist overcomes, or resolves, the conflicts or struggles.
  • After the conflicts or struggles, the protagonist grows, or for worse, falls. 

Find it familiar? A lot of superhero films use this formula!

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Carefully plan your protagonist’s struggles

Another point you should pay attention to is that struggle part is essential to a good story.

Why is the struggle important to your story? Because the struggle separates what is called a story from what is daily chore.

Imagine a story is taken away all the struggles. What is left is a sole description of the daily life.

For example, in Hunger Games, if Katniss was not forced to take part in the Hunger Game, the whole show would not even exist at the first place.

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In this light, the importance of the struggle is self-evident.

And for this reason, you should be extra careful when telling your protagonist’s struggle. Depict the struggle vividly. And also reveal deeply what the protagonist is, what the protagonist feels before that life-changing struggle.

Trim off the unnecessary parts

Our final reminder for you to tell a good story is to cut out the unnecessary details in your story.

No one wants to listen to a repetitive and long-winded story.And the excessive details of your story can push off your audience.

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Make sure your story is clear of unnecessary details. To determine what is unnecessary, you may ask yourself:

  • Does it contribute to the delivery of the story’s message or theme?
  • Does it initiate or facilitate changes of the protagonist?
  • Does it help the audience know what to expect of the story?
  • Does it help to build emotions?

If the part you hesitate with does not answer the above questions, very likely it is unnecessary. Then be bold to cut it out.

Remember sometimes less is more. What makes a good story is not overwhelming irrelevant details, but the powerful language and propelling content.

More by this author

Chris Cheung

Editorial Intern, Lifehack

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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