The Power of Story: Lifting the Emotional Baggage

By: | Posted in: Coaching, Leadership | Tuesday, Oct 28, 2014 - 1:30pm

The stories we tell ourselves can take hold of us for days, weeks or even years. They can produce drama and a whole host of things we tell ourselves. It produces, anger, sorrow, sadness and often self-doubt, especially for us as women. The hold of the story is laden with emotional baggage, often taking us back to the past rather than being in the present. It can cause the “should” or “if only”, or better yet, “if I had done x, then y would or wouldn’t have happened”. And sometimes, the story shifts to blame. “Well, if she hadn’t done x, then he wouldn’t have done y”.

It’s not that stories are “bad.” We exist in and live through our telling of stories. It’s when we have so much invested in the outcome or when it causes us not to fully “be” and leads to heavy baggage that it becomes problematic. A “good” story can also have this effect. Because we have so much invested in the story that we’re afraid to let go and to let it go, we lose our power and can become the victim.Emotional Baggage

Do you have such a story? I did. I went through all the emotions and the shoulds and the self-doubt and the times of reflecting on the past when I could be living my present.

Rewriting the Story:

If the story is gripping you and you’re struggling with its rewrite, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  1. Do I want or need to let go of the story? Is the time right to give up that story and create a new one? Am I ready?
  2. What judgments am I making about my desire to hold onto the story?
  3. What fears and emotions are calling me to hold onto the story? To give it up?
  4. If I could create a new story with different possibilities, what would the new story look like?
  5. What action could bring me closer to letting go of the story? What could I tell myself instead?

I would love to hear your comments. Interact with me in the comment box below. You also can access my Seven Tips for Embracing Your Woman Power.