People respond to stories. They tell them themselves. The stories spread, and as people tell them, the stories change the tellers. Because now the folk who never had any thought in their head but how to run from lions and keep far enough away from rivers that the crocodiles don't get an easy meal, now they're starting to dream about a whole new place to live. The world may be the same, but the wallpaper's changed.- Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
(One of my favorite story quotes.)
This past week I attended Reinvention Summit 2. Each day had 4 sessions that tackled story from a variety of angles. At the end of each day, J and I would sit there for a bit, just getting our heads around what we had absorbed. I have homework to do yet - a few sessions that I missed most of and want to watch, worksheets, book shopping, and lots of links to follow. This is going to help me immensely as I step forward on the Initiative front the remainder of this year.
One key takeaway for me was to set fear aside. I hadn't really acknowledged that it was holding me back. "Nerves". "Not my cup of tea". "Too risky for me". "I don't want to deal with the paperwork." Really all fear-based. Afraid of stepping out and not having anything of value to say. Of crawling out on a limb only to have it crack under my weight. Of not having a clear enough direction and so ending up going nowhere fast.
What I learned this past week is that, if I let myself think those sort of thoughts, there will always be some reason NOT to move forward. That I share a love of story with a large number of smart people, so I don't have to do anything alone. That story excites me and makes me happy and I already knew that when I'm excited I'm pretty good at bringing other people into the fold.
I just have to do it.
Here's a snapshot of just my tweets and retweets from the week so that you can see a bit of the themes that I appreciated enough to share.
What I think jumps out here is that subjects related to connecting stand out as much as creating stories (connect, audience, change, conversation, love, tell, culture, world, people, share).
Some specific key quotes (all from Michael Margolis @getstoried, btw) out of those tweets include:
- Life is a conscious creation - get comfortable creating something on your own terms.
- It's not a job to you. It's a quest.
- We are all self-made individuals and we now have the tools to become whoever we want to be.
Maybe these jumped out because of the fear discussion above.
There was a ton more - a great cast of speakers and a great tribe of participants. Like I said, I have homework to do yet, so I suspect this won't be the last post you see on the topic. ;-)
As part of setting aside my fear (and part of shoving myself into interaction so I don't revert to bashful wallflower), I contributed to the Tribe Showcase and shared the story of my projects - nascent as it is. AStoriedCareer did a nice writeup of the Showcase here. I also provided feedback on the impact of the summit that was shared in the final session, so that was pretty cool.
The experience was awesome and I can't wait to see the path I carve for myself from here and for future encounters with the Tribe on the road ahead.