Why is understanding story so important?
Most people believe that stories live in the pages of books, but the most important stories in the world are hidden. They live inside us. They are created through the meaning we make of our experiences. Day by day. Moment by moment.
The stories we hold are our lens on the world. They frame what we see and who we can be as a result. They determine our agency -- our ability to take action and make impact.
Whether you see possibilities or problems, competition or potential colleagues depends on your story. Most people aren't even aware their story is in the driver's seat and they are being taken for a ride, all the while wishing desperately to go down a different road.
This happens both for individuals and systemically.
Here's the thing: We live in a story and that means we can change it.
Changing your personal story is the first step towards living the future you want. When you claim your story, you learn to trust yourself and your impact expands. You shine brighter and the world will beat a path to your door.
When we change the stories we live in collectively, at work and in the spheres we are part of -- when they are more positive and generative -- life gets better for everyone. Work becomes more fulfilling, community becomes more connected and everyone benefits.
The power of transformation lies in the stories we choose to activate. In life, at work, in society: It's time to tell a better story.
The aspects of great storymaking
Telling a better story is about more than technique. If you want to lead with story, you need more than a simple list of elements. SOAR works with five core aspects to bring story to life within individuals and systems.
Together these aspects form a potent strategy. When you work with your own stories, you build personal and interpersonal capacity. When we work with stories together -- as leaders in work and life -- we increase our capacity for collective wise action.
Whatever the change you're seeking, your story -- and how you host it into life -- is the key.
Read the book
What's the most important story in the world? It's the one you tell yourself.
The stories alive inside you influence whether you feel powerless or powerful, color your success and happiness, underpin every action you take. When you wake up to the stories at work in your life, you suddenly step into the position of power. Story stops being what defines you and becomes your ally.
If you're longing for a larger, more authentic life, let 365 ALIVE! be your guide.
Join the Community
THE STORY DOJO is a community for exploring, ideating and practicing all aspects of story. Whether you are a new story enthusiast or a seasoned practitioner, we have something for you. Let us host your story to life!
- • Vibrant conversation
- • Hosted exploration of how story works
- • A safe space for your story to grow & change
- • Digital Learning Library
- • Worldwide Community
Everyone is welcome -- come and check us out!Find out more & join us!
2023 is the year to change your Story
Online June 9 & 10 / In person in September
“I know it’s time to think bigger, to step into my power, to rise to the next level. But I don’t know how!”
Something is calling for change. The old ways of being and working just aren't working anymore.
Maybe it's the job that doesn't fit. Maybe it's an outworn identity that's too small and no longer serving.
THRIVE! is a workshop for people who want to live their power.
Using the powerful building blocks of personal story, potent questions and wisdom council, Thrive! offers you the gift of considering who you want to be, what that looks like and how you can get there.
You will come away with a deep sense of commitment to your next significant steps into your vibrant future.
THRIVE! is being offered both online and in person:
JUNE 9 & 10 Online
SEPTEMBER in the heart of the wine region -- Würzburg, Germany
May 17 - 19
Stories Without Borders
Storytellers at this free online conference want to help you build bridges instead of walls
There are many walls around us. Some block teams from arriving to a common point of view on what to do next. Other walls stop us from hearing our loved ones. Still other walls block the courage to try to change something for the better.
Often these walls are built of stories.
Some of the walls were built by us, some were built for us.
All of them limit our opportunities and connections with others and with ourselves.
But story is not the whole wall, but only one stone.
This means that we can build new bridges by taking new stones or by dismantling at least part of the existing wall.
That's why we have gathered a team of the most experienced story practitioners from all over the world – to show how to overcome boundaries and differences with the help of stories, to create new connections and build bridges!
Join my interactive session on Thursday, May 18!
Free & online
Play THE FLOW GAME
A playful way to take action on what really matters
Give yourself -- and the people who matter most -- the gift of a powerful future. Playing a Flow Game is exactly the support you need to put the foundation under your next steps.
The Flow Game is a combination of stimulating questions, wise coaching and deep reflection. Focusing on what matters most to you right now, your questions become the the entrée into a fun and easy tool that creates wise council for your burning issues.
Now is the perfect time!
A Flow Game is ideal for:
- Colleagues who want to innovate together
- A team needing wise council on a current or planned initiative
- Anyone seeking personal inspiration and a lift into their desired future
- A group or event where sparking out-of-the-box thinking is key
Find out what others say about their experience...
I'm Mary Alice & I'm a Story Activist
I've been travelling the world and going in and out of organizations, systems, communities and cultures for decades. In working with both individuals and groups, I realized STORY is the secret superpower of humanity. The stories we tell are creating the world we're living in. Every moment. Every day. Story by story.
YOUR STORY IS YOUR FOUNDATION & YOUR KEY TO THE FUTURE -- the roadmap for enabling your purpose in the world.
Your story acts as a beacon lighting the way. What most people don't realize is that you aren't stuck with the current situation -- you can make the choice to activate a better story.
I guide people longing to live a larger and more authentic life to uncover and craft the story that compels them to live that life. And I work with groups to find the stories that will bring their vision and potential into focus and action.
JUST FINDING YOUR STORY IS NOT ENOUGH, YOU NEED TO BRING IT TO LIFE -- especially if the story involves others.
Taking action to live your own story -- and working with others to help a new story take root in the world -- is vital. And there are so many stories that need changing now! I'm a great storyteller, but I'm even better at coaching people to hone the capacity to activate and empower stories to life.
How you take action, especially with others, matters. And with a story and skill, anyone can make change in themselves and in this world!
My book, my story community, the programs I offer and how I work as a Story Activist are the ways I'm making my contribution to grow our individual and collective futures.
I just love working with groups! Here's Brian Tarallo's harvest of my workshop "Change Your Story, Change the World" at the Power of Visuals Week-a-thon.
Inspiration & support to step out with your story!
Subscribe to my newsletter -- The Red Thread -- for news and tips about the power & practice of story.
"I turned to Mary Alice for support in a critical time in my work to successfully navigate a difficult merger and rebuild the team. I consider the coaching and support key factors in the success of this project. Her warm and wise presence by my side empowered me and impacted the entire organization with lasting results."
Consultant & coach, Slovakia
"Mary Alice has been a guide on our journey of service transformation in different ways over seven years. She brings crisp clarity, sharp focus, deep wisdom and a collection of stories that create space for potent conversations and insights."
Strategic Partnerships Manager, Uniting Care, Queensland, Australia
"Mary Alice has the sort of grounded presence that can hold a group of any size. I experienced her leading one of the best conferences I've attended. Many people are competent and skilled. Mary Alice has that extra spark that makes her truly inspirational."
Founder, The Grove Consultants International, USA