Popeye used to say, “I am what I am.” Being authentic is exactly that: being who you are. You are who you are, so don’t try to be someone else. People like to connect to other people who are genuine and seem real. That is probably why we relate so well to TV and Youtube. We like to see people and hear their stories.
If you want to really connect with people, you have to be authentic. You have to represent yourself ‘warts and all.’ Most people can point out a fake, so be real and honest about who you are. It’s much easier to keep track of your story if it is truly you.
What do you think about when I say, “Once upon a time . . . “
You think of a specific story, I bet. Stories are engrained in our psyche. Out ancestors did not have books and shared much of their history through stories. Stories are how children learn and adults still love a good story.
Stories are conversations. Stories don’t talk ‘at’ you they talk ‘to’ you…they talk ‘with’ you. Make sure when you tell your story you imagine sharing it with a child. Make it interesting, ask questions and make it a conversation.
“Stupid is as stupid does,” said Forest Gump. When you watch a movie like that you become endeared to the character through his childlike openness. You could say that you never had to guess what Forest was thinking.
Transparency is being open as opposed to authenticity which is being real. You can be real and not be totally open, but it is hard to be open and not be real. When you are transparent, people can see how you truly feel about a topic. When you share your story of hurts, people can relate to you because they can see your openness and how you truly feel.
Additional Tips for your entrepreneur story:
- Your story is what makes you. . .you! Everyone has a story. Some simply call it the past, but it is all about how you share it and what you learned from it.
- Your story includes things like how you feel about family, money, purpose, life, death, beliefs, social status, other people, etc. Your story talks about your triumphs, as well as, the flub ups. It takes your reader or listener on a journey with you.
- All good stories have the who, what, where and how. People want details, but they don’t need to know every little detail. Only share what is important to the ‘lesson.’
- Every good story has a lesson (plot). If you are in business, your story lesson may be how you got into business, why you are doing your specific business, what you learned being an entrepreneurs, and all kinds of things that share the wisdom that you have learned on your journey. (Yes, you have wisdom!)