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We all have problems.
The Solution is Story.
Introducing the Story Solution Intensive
February 20, 2019 (the day after SAS)
at the Renaissance Arboretum Hotel in Austin, Texas
In October of this year, Sean and Johnny conducted an experiment with a small group of very smart people from a top-end mastermind we belong to. We told them that if they’d give us their time, we’d show them how to them tell the story of their business and life. They leapt at the chance, because they understood what we were saying:
Stories have purpose, meaning, and a clear path to follow.
Our lives, usually, have none of those things …
… yet to succeed and thrive, we sorely need them.
See, stories cohere — and drive toward endings that might be thrilling, satisfying, or emotionally fulfilling, depending on the story — because it’s the author’s job to make them cohere. Life and business have no architect — no driving force keeping everything aligned. Things happen, and we respond. The market drives your business one way (up, down, or into a new direction entirely) and you have to roll with it.
Or do you?
What we found when we piloted our “Story Solution” idea with those initial folks was that in order to give your life meaning and give your business purpose, you need to treat your path as if you’re the protagonist of a story.
That means understanding that when you or your business doesn’t get what you want, it’s often because you’re on the way toward getting what you need instead.
It means that you, as that story’s hero, are as flawed as any hero. You’re not going to get it right the first time, because YOU (and your flaws) are going to get in your own way. And that means that when you inevitably hit dips in life and work, it’s not about solving a problem … but is more about evolving into something better, or someone better.
It means that your life and career have more than one act. It also means that although you’ll begin Act 2 believing you know what’s supposed to happen and what you’re supposed to get, you’ll almost for-sure GET some of those things only to find you want their exact opposite.
And it means that if your story is currently meaningless, boring, or generally all-over-the-place, chances are that’s because you need to do some serious editing. Do less. Pay attention to less. Listen to less. Have fewer inputs, fewer outputs, and fewer but better people in your life. Spool out fewer plotlines so you can make those that remain absolutely amazing.
I have immense respect for Sean and Johnny. They took the time to understand the story that I needed to tell, the audience I wanted to reach and why it was important to me. Then using their combined experience we brainstormed a new format, distilled the story down and created actionable steps that I could execute on. The process was profound on both personal and business levels.
Simply put, if you have the opportunity to work with them, I highly recommend it. They are two of the most caring and glowingly intelligent people I’ve met in the realm of storytelling.
— Chris Plough, co-founder of AdventureX
When we did our pilot Story Solution program …
- One person learned that a problematic line of business was, in fact, the purest expression of what their entire life had always been thematically about — the core of their story and key journey of their “protagonist,” as it were. That single realization turned the hassle business into their front-and-center: the thing they were supposed to double-down on to thrive, not eliminate.
- One person saw that the messaging used in their business, though standard for the industry, was holding them back. Even the terminology that everyone else in the field used was wrong … for them. They had amazing clients, but were turning off those who were best for their product. All because that business had, for years, been operating as if it were a story told in the wrong genre.
- One person saw all of their pursuits so far — random though they seemed — as varied reflections of one core idea. They left with a plan to re-focus that idea, and launch a new venture … and already knew exactly how to start.
- And, doing this process for ourselves taught us that Sterling & Stone’s “life and business theme” is about story, not education. It’s the reason we’re shutting down The Smarter Artist and moving into new forms of storytelling (TV and movies, with 5 or 6 projects in the hopper already) instead.
We’ve decided to hold our Story Solution intensive just one time before we shut down the Smarter Artist for good.
One small group. One day only — fittingly, the day after the final Smarter Artist Summit. Life-changing results.
Would you like to join us?
Just click the big green button below. (But hurry … we’ve only got room for 8 people.)