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The stories we tell ourselves

Updated: Jan 26, 2023

Don’t know about you, but I looove a good story.

When it comes to stories, we all have some foundational ones based on how we made sense of key moments in our lives and what we learned by noticing the world around us.

Some of the stories we tell ourselves are uplifting, others extremely disempowering. They're loaded with emotion, we rehearse them in our head, reinforce them through the inner negative chatter and they transform themselves into ‘universal truths’ that limit our fulfillment.

Here’s a story about you*:

"A man found an eagle's egg and put it in a nest of a barnyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chickens and grew up with them.

All his life the eagle did what the barnyard chicks did, thinking he was a barnyard chicken. He scratched the earth for worms and insects. He clucked and cackled. And he would thrash his wings and fly a few feet into the air.

Years passed and the eagle grew very old. One day he saw a magnificent bird above him in the cloudless sky. It glided in graceful majesty among the powerful wind currents, with scarcely a beat of its strong golden wings.

The old eagle looked up in awe. "Who's that?" he asked.

"That's the eagle, the king of the birds," said his neighbor. "He belongs to the sky. We belong to the earth—we're chickens."

So the eagle lived and died a chicken, for that's what he thought he was."

Source: Song of the Bird, Anthony de Mello (*“Every one of these stories is about YOU”)


Take a moment and reflect on the key stories that you tell yourself and how they empower or disempower you.

Who are you and where do you belong?

What would be possible if you rewrite your most disempowering story?

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