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Practice Makes Practice (3 of 3): Sharing Stories

We just wrapped up a 2 day “How to present like a pro” workshop and as we went around the room to get people’s #1 take away, we got a lot of “PRACTICING OUT LOUD”.  


Just like you can’t learn to play basketball by thinking about it or learn the ukulele by imagining yourself strumming the chords, you can’t become a good storyteller by only saying the words in your head. I don’t know about you, but even if I’ve said the words in my head a million times, when I finally do say the words out loud, they sound nothing like I imagined they would, and typically not in a good way.  


So after you have searched for and found a story or two (Part 1) and you have shaped your story (Part 2), do yourself a solid and practice the story out loud, either to yourself, a friend, or a colleague.  Oh, I bet your dog would like to hear your story.  See what words come out when you open your mouth. Then do it again (and again) and each time play around with adding sticky story elements and different delivery tactics.


A couple sticky story elements to consider as you share and re-share your story.


  1. Add Dialogue: This is a great way to show vs tell and bring your audience into the conversation.

  • Dialogue Between 2 People

  • Show: As Carl is running away from me he turns his head and says “If we don't hurry up we will both miss the bus”.

  • Tell: Carl runs ahead of me to catch the bus.

  • Internal Dialog:

  • Show - As the door to the bus closes behind me, I think to myself “How did Carl know the bus was not going to wait for us?”

  • Tell: Somehow Carl knew the bus would not wait for us. 

  • Perceived Dialog

  • Show: The bus driver looked at me as if to say “you're lucky I waited as long as I did” 

  • Tell: The bus driver looked at me with disdain. 

  1. Tell the story in real time

  • When we tell the story in real time it places the listener in the moment.

  • “I am standing in the middle of the intersection…” vs  “I was standing in the …”The second statement is a reflection back and does not make it as real in the mind’s eye. 


A couple delivery tactics to consider as you share and re-share your story.


  1. Slooowww Dooowwwnnn:  We tend to speak quickly when we are nervous, make a conscious effort to slow down.

  2. Pause:  Pausing is not only a brilliant tactic for effect, it also gives your listeners time to process the information you are sharing.  You know the story so you don’t need as much time to process, but your audience is hearing this for the time so give them the gift of the pause.


Now go, share your stories with the world!


Here at Articulated Intelligence we have boat load more sticky story elements and delivery tactics. Hit us up, we'd be happy to teach you more. Oh and if your dog isn't interested in hearing your stories, we are, reach out we’d love to hear them!


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