The other day I heard a man say: “I’ve heard so many athletes speak – and it’s so predictable. They all follow the Hero’s Journey.* “
(*If you don’t about the Hero’s Journey, don’t worry I didn’t either until it became a buzzword in marketing. It’s a way of telling a story that follows this structure of a hero who feels this calling to take a certain action. In fact most captivating stories follow from ancient myths and religious stories to modern day movies.
The Hero has to step out of the comfort zone in order to pursue this call. Shit happens out there stirring things up and the Hero needs help. That’s when the Guide comes into the story in some form. Once they Hero understands and applies the message from the Guide, things take a turn. The Hero has changed in some way and there is some kind of resolution.)
Anyways, it’s not so strange that stories tend to follow this structure – but the structure is not the essential. The structure is just a framework to give a MESSAGE. That’s why not all stories are the same just because they follow that same proven structure.
To find your own angle, think of lessons you have learnt the hard way. Is there a message that other people could benefit from? Where you could save them from having to go through the same ? Or where you can help people who are currently going through something similar ?
In the latest episode of Athlete Story, former Bobsledder, Tom Johansen tells how a little girl listening to his story helped him understand a new angle of his story that had tremendous value to kids to help them understand concepts like responsibility when leading a group – without ever having to use those words. Simply by telling about the experience as a bobsled pilot crashing with his 3 team mates at 125 km/h.