personal storytelling work i want to do

so there are two different areas of personal storytelling work i want to do/start in the next little while. the first is working with individuals to understand and craft their stories. the other is working with students, especially students just starting out at new schools, to map out, understand, and retell their stories (probably strategically).

on the first piece of work: i’m really interested in working with individuals (maybe through a sponsorship model - ht craig aubuchon for that idea!) to dig deep on their personal stories and understand how to tell them. i’m begining to think that (based on observation) a ton of the problems we deal with in the west are a result of lack of understanding of where we come from. note: this is not a new insight; people have been saying that america is built on amnesia for a while. but i think a significant solution to this could be to start with individual people and their stories. if enough people do this, collective amnesia should be impossible. this feels like something i might want to roll into my ‘institute of self’ project.

on the second piece: i think that understanding, telling, and retelling our stories can happen strategically and should happen at certain points in life. our personal stories are so much of how we move about and function in the world. and yet, we all know that as we age and change and learn, the way we understand stories we learned earlier in life, changes. i think the same is true about our personal stories. as we get older, the “move” our parents made randomly, becomes situated in a context of gender, work, and geography.

i think starting a new school is a great moment to take time to interrogate our stories and then think about how to retell them based on our current level of knowledge, not what we knew when the individual events themselves happened.

anyway, i want to figure out how to do this work with cohorts of students, but that pathway has yet to present itself. someday…

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