When you were a kid, did you ever make up a story about something that happened to impress a friend or someone you knew?
Most of us went through this at some point growing up, and the more times you told the story, it eventually felt almost like the truth, in fact, you might have actually come to believe the story you were telling over time; facts started to blur, times and places became hazy until you eventually stored your little fib as a real memory.
So if even something made up can become a real memory over time, how do you think that our perceptions and beliefs affects our memories, our past, and even who we are today and who we will become tomorrow?
Think about a court case.
There will be multiple witnesses who all tell a different account about what they saw, despite being in the exact same place and at the same time. It seems crazy, but our memories are made up of our interpretations of events, not the actual events themselves.
Often times we may not remember the fine details of an event, but we almost always remember how we feel, and over time we may start filling in those gaps with made up details based off of how we felt.
It is kind of like the old game we played as kids, where you all sit in a circle and one person starts a sentence at one end of the circle, and by the time it reaches back to them the story is not the same at all.
Most of us believe that we are a product of our past experiences, and I tend to agree. Unless you take conscious control over your current actions and place in life, you are just a helpless result of what you have been through in life.
How do our perceptions of the past, and how do the stories we tell shape our lives and futures?
Imagine having a memory about a time when you answered a question in class wrong, and the entire class laughed at you for it. Not only did they laugh, but people remembered it for years after the fact and people remembered you as that kid who answered the question wrong.
Over time that memory would become something that defined you, and you would always be “that kid”. The more others remind you and the more you reminded yourself, the more you would believe that was who you are. You would identify with being the person who answers questions wrong, you would ball up, become less likely to ask questions or engage in conversations, and you might be afraid to open up to people for fear of the repercussions and judgements.
One moment from our past, one story in our life, can shape our entire life.
So be careful with the stories you tell, be careful what memories you hold onto, because we often become the stories we tell, and likewise the people we care about will become the stories we tell about them.
Choose to be empowered, choose to be great, and choose to become whatever you desire in each moment.
Tell a story that challenges you to live up to something greater than your past, be something great.
What story are you telling about yourself, or what stories do you tell about others? Are you becoming the change you wish to see? Chime in below with a comment and let us know what you think, and please feel free to share this post if you think it could help someone you know.