I’ve always believed that one of the best things that can bring a group of people closer together is through the power of a good story. Throughout time, stories have been an intrinsic part of societies. From neanderthal cave art to renaissance paintings to blues music to blockbuster movies, the influence of storytelling has been apparent since human beings learned how to commune and gather.
Before a proper system of writing was established, man had to rely purely on memory to take on accounts of great feats achieved by humankind. These storytellers invoke excitement and inspiration to their audiences by creating a sense of bond between the storyteller, the story, and the audience. In order to tell a great story, the story and the storyteller should learn how to understand the feelings of his/her audience by creating empathy.
As human beings, we live in our own bubble while having our own unique perspective on the world. Understanding how other people perceive and experience the world is crucial for our personal development, relationships with other people, and the society as a whole. A key aspect in becoming more relevant and credible to the people around us is to actively think beyond ourselves and think about the concerns of others. Are we trying to speak their language? Do we really understand why a certain individual feel a certain way? We have to genuinely listen to their troubles and figure out their past experiences that led them to a particular world view. For people to listen to your stories, we must first listen to them.
Brands should be responsible enough ask themselves this: “Will this content I am making today create a lasting positive impact on the people I am targeting?” The world is defined by the people who live in it. Creating content that understands people can help people see the world in a wider perspective. When brands enable humans to bring these stories to their own lives, this proves that stories can really influence values and perspectives.
In a world where fear from different parts of the world is slowly rising, it is now more important than ever to be more considerate about the feelings of the people around us. If you want to bring people closer together: be genuinely empathic! Empathy can help you see the world in a greater resolution as you perceive it through your own lens as well as the lenses of the people around you. Stories can resonate more effectively and inclusively as you understand better the perception of those around you. Having a genuine understanding and discernable language can help you cut through the noise that most big brands are banking on for huge profits. Don’t forget, you’re human, too.