Following on from my last post on a shift, I’ve decided this week to write about stories.
Not just the stories that we hear and read.
But the stories that we tell ourselves each day.
The theme for this post came to me when having the realisation that my world is surrounded by, and made up of stories.
In my first Note to Self on structure I referred to two stories;
- The dip by Seth Godin
- Irresistible by Adam Alter
At the time (early lockdown) they provided some potential answers to the situation we found ourselves in.
In part the inspiration for my second Note to self on stuff came from a story; A squash and a squeeze by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffer.
This is one Jess’s (our youngest daughter) favourite stories.
The story centres around a lady who perceives she is running out of space in her house.
She seeks advice from a wise old man.
Who in response, suggests she takes in her animals one by one.
However, once the house is full, the wise old man suggests the lady removes the animals one by one.
Providing her with the realisation that she actually has plenty of room in her house.
Perhaps this is a metaphor for all of us to take plenty from.
I know I have.
The stories being projected onto us each day, and into our minds through the media have been hard to comprehend at times.
Pain and suffering is touching us as a human race right now.
Yet the story of human kindness, which we witnessed and were a part of for several weeks, has started to fade.
The brightness has shifted to something more sinister and deeper in our society.
It’s a story which I believe we each have to think long and hard about.
Our part in what happens next will be the basis of the stories in years to come.
What do we want as a society, to be told over and over again to future generations?
We have been presented with a chance to do the right thing.
‘The world is changed by your example, not by your opinion’.
Lessons from others
During this time I have continually sought solace and answers from others.
Wiser men and women than me.
I admit that I’m not immune to struggle or lacking clarity of purpose (and have shared in previous posts).
Philosophy and stoicism in particular continue to provide me with much needed learning.
Marcus Aurelius in his Meditations wrote;
As human beings we are part of nature and our duty is to accommodate ourselves to its demands and requirements.
This requires not merely passive acquiescence in what happens, but active cooperation with the world, with fate and above all, with other human beings.
Each time I’ve reached out, an answer has duly come my way.
This has and will continue to fill me with hope.
The important thing about a problem is not the solution, but the strength we gain in finding a solution.
Seneca the younger
My own stories
The stories that I tell myself (at times) can seem harsh and unhelpful.
I accept in part that’s how I am programmed.
However, those stories take on a different perspective when I speak to others.
I’m truly thankful for those who continue to listen to me, especially my wife Emma.
Until next time, take a moment to think about the stories shaping your world right now.
If you’re not happy with them, then change the perspective by speaking to others.
Stay safe, big love x
*Note to self is a collection of thoughts that I’m sharing during this time to help me make sense of now.*
You can find all my Notes to self here.
Commit one percent of your day (14.4 minutes) and see what happens…