The New York Times has reported that scientists are confirming the power of narrative stories to give meaning to our lives. Our “life stories” tell us who we are and why we’re here, and as the Times reports, “Every American may be working on a screenplay, but we are also continually updating a treatment of our own life — and the way in which we visualize each scene not only shapes how we think about ourselves, but how we behave, new studies find. By better understanding how life stories are built, this work suggests, people may be able to alter their own narrative, in small ways and perhaps large ones.”
This report is heavy stuff, but it does confirm that narrative stories help make us who we are. That’s why I’ve always advocated for storytelling. If you’re in business, tell stories through your presentations and reports. If you’re a pastor, tell more stories in the pulpit. If you’re a filmmaker, understand the power of dramatic structure.
Stories connect with people in a way nothing else can.