How Do You Tell Your Story?

We all have a story to tell. The question is how we tell it.

Our self-image, personal drive, and attitude towards others center around the story we believe about ourselves. I'm convinced the majority of issues we face in our lives are a direct result of the stories we tell ourselves about the person in the mirror.

We either see our stories as an asset or a liability. Please forgive the accounting speak, but I believe this illustrates the point perfectly.

If we like the story we tell about ourselves, it is an asset. We are secure in all parts of our story. We realize that our achievements, mixed with our failures and short comings come together to mold our current situation. Our past experiences viewed collectively make us who we are today. No, things are not perfect, but overall we enjoy the story of our life.

If we do not like our story, it is a liability that needs to be covered up. We choose to keep our past hidden, afraid of what someone else would say about us if they knew the "real" person behind the mask. Instead of seeing past accomplishments, we focus on our previous mistakes. They take center stage. Since they are a focal point in our own life, we assume that is what others focus on when they see us. This idea could not be further from the truth. People see the person that you are now, not the person you used to be. There is no greater story than that of reconciliation and recovery.

Confidence and poise are direct results of a positive story. Uncertainty, jealousy, and fear consume the inner self of a life lived behind a mask.

What I have always loved about stories is they can be rewritten. Think of it a second draft. With a few internal changes to your attitude, you can turn a liability into an asset. That mistake you made in your 20's could become a platform or bridge to connect to someone else. People are more forgiving than you expect.

If you help someone change the story they believe about themselves, you can change a life. We all remember the person that first believed in us and told us we could do more than we thought. It is time you believe in yourself the same way they did. They saw something in you that was special. Now is the time to see that in yourself. It starts by forgiving yourself of past mistakes and changing the story you tell about you.

Bryan Clifton

Oklahoma City, OK