The Seven Stones Blog

The Story We Tell Is the Life We Live.

By Jen Cohen

What stories do you tell:

about yourself?

about the world?

about the political climate?

about your family?

about the future?

about what is possible?

Where did the stories come from? Did you write them yourself? Were they crafted by the media, your grandmother, or by those who write the history books? They come from all of those places.

We are living in layers upon layers of story. These stories get woven into the muscle, fat and tissues of our bodies, into our minds and hearts and into our children’s bodies before they arrive. We are walking stories; a co-mingling of past and future. Stories become the very essence of our existence. Usually, we don’t think of them as stories. More likely we just say something like, “This is the way that it is. The way that I am. The way the world is.” But what if it isn’t true? What if we too can be the authors of the stories of our lives?

We have more power than we know; to rewrite old stories, invent new ones, add new layers, change the DNA for your children and mine too. I had a teacher who always said, “It’s all made up, so make up something good.”

Are you ready to harness that power?

Start with diving into the inquires I pose above.

Write a story of a future that seems, at this moment, highly unlikely to appear in your lifetime. Then live it. This is the hard part: Living the story long enough so it is woven into your flesh, and so that it comes alive in your families and in the world. This takes practice. (A subject for another post.) Invite others to join you. This takes courage. Writing our own stories is the demand of our time. Because stories matter and you matter.

In our book The 7 Laws of Enough we offer the following practice:

Creating the Future from the Future

Creating our story for the future is a powerful declaration practice that can be done at any time. We often create at the beginning of the year, month, or quarter. We have heard others call this exercise “Back to the Future” or a “Merlin Process.”

For this exercise, imagine it is the end of the year (event, meeting, class) and you are sitting with a dear friend, your spouse, or coach and relaying to them how the intervening time was spent.

Talk as if the time has passed in your year or event. Report on what happened, what worked and what didn’t. Note how you spent your time; what brought you joy and all that you accomplished. Note who and what you are grateful for. Take time to write this in your journal or type it up in your personal notes.

Put it away for at least twenty-four hours. When you return, reread what you wrote. What do you notice? Are there any tweaks to make?

Are you ready to write the story of the life you want to live?

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