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How To Write Stories About Your Business

You’ve heard it once. You’ve heard it a million times. You’ve got to tell stories. 
And now Forbes is forecasting that “great storytelling” and “less reliance on data” will shape the marketing futures for small businesses this year. 
So. You’re on board. You've accepted that storytelling can help you grow your business and reach your ideal customers. And you're ready to dive in. But there’s just one problem: when it comes to your business, where do great stories come from? And which stories should you tell? 

Stories are All Around Us  

The truth is stories are everywhere. In fact, this is the very worldview professional storytellers hold and use to find stories worth sharing. 
Margot Leitman, the author of Long Story Short and Moth Grand Slam Champion, believes the problem with finding good stories originates from our actions and our awareness. Leitman argues that as we age we...
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Create an Atomic Writing Habit

If you’ve ever wanted to write a book but never made it past the first few pages, this article is for you. It's also for you if you write for work but often procrastinate. And this message is for you, if you think writing might help provide meaning and clarity to your life. In other words, when it comes to writing, this article is for the avoiders, the procrastinators, and the dreamers of the world. 
In James Clear’s book Atomic Habits, he explores how simple changes can create profound impact in our lives. The problem, as Clear sees it, is our ambition causes us to shoot for the stars. 
A simple way of understanding Clear's premise is to consider a common goal like wanting to drink more water. Even though you're starting out with an average of drinking less than two glasses per day, you set your mark at 60 ounces of water. Every day.
When you fail, you have all sorts of reasons why it didn’t work—you just don’t like...
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Your Writing Cheat Sheet

Why is it is so hard to start a new piece of writing? 

After teaching college students, coaching professionals, and writing for businesses, I’ve discovered three simple reasons: 
  1. You haven’t spent enough time gathering your thoughts or data needed to write. 
  2. You haven’t scheduled time to write. 
  3. You don’t know how to get started. 
I’ve written other articles focused on the attitude of getting started. I even wrote a whole chapter on the topic in Write Big, called the “Ready, Set, Mindset.” Essentially, you have to stiff arm your internal critic by writing fast so you can make the important discoveries needed to write your project. It’s a trick for getting started not for writing an entire work, so use with caution.
In this article, however, I want to talk about what’s underneath the uncertainty of getting started, and I don’t mean your 4th grade teacher’s criticism of your...
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How Writing Fast Tricks Your Inner Critic

These days most composition looks like whatever we write on a computer or touchscreen.
But what if I asked you to think way back. Back to the days when you learned to write by hand in school. What do you remember?
Is it the fat lines with the dotted center? The repetition of letter after letter? Or maybe it's the hand cramps? For me, I think about the callous on my right ring finger and the way I [still] rub it to help me sort left from right. Oh and possibly the way handwriting practice seemed to take forever! 
But then one day I learned cursive—the holy grail of writing fast! In fact, it may have been the undoing of all of my careful handwriting practice. But the speed! The efficiency! 
From print to cursive to eventual paragraphs, then book reports, research projects, essays, and more, our ‘writing’ education developed from the act of putting letters on a page to the activity of making sense out of words. And for almost...
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Messy Idea Theory

Messy idea theory is a groundbreaking mind shift about how nebulous ideas are translated into powerful prose.
Now you may have never heard of Messy Idea Theory because, well, I made it up and then gave it a name…but I did that to shake up and help you rethink how to create a great piece of writing. And it just so happens to be the process that’s helped hundreds of the people I've worked with learn to write better and sound smarter.
Alright so Messy Idea Theory goes like this:
Ideas live inside the messy houses of our brains. Even when we try to think of one thing at a time, an idea will wander outside, hop the tracks, or get all tangled up with other ideas. This really isn’t even a bad thing. It’s just a thing about our brains. 
The problem comes from the clash between the natural habitat of our messy ideas and the expectations in a polished piece of writing. If messy ideas live in a world that’s boundless, tangled, and...
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