Whether it’s the sandwich method of criticism, direct criticism or persuasion methods, there are plenty of strategies you can use to convince someone to change their ways. Tell someone a relatable, convincing story to get them to see the consequences of their actions.
Whether you’re telling your own past lessons or someone else’s, good convincing stories can change the way someone perceives their own actions. Think about The Boy Who Cried Wolf, and how it made you and other children realise how harsh the consequences of lying can be. Sometimes, stories are the best way to enlighten someone to the errors of their ways. Tyler Tervooren of The Good Men Project explains why stories are sometimes better than other forms of criticism:
- It removes direct confrontation. When you tell a story, you’re no longer telling someone what they should or shouldn’t do. Instead, you’re laying out a scenario they can follow that will lead them to the result you want. But will they listen? Yes, because…
- It forces the listener to take part in the story. If I tell you about my friend who built a successful business in a year by waking up an hour early every day, you can’t help but place yourself in the story. You see yourself waking up early. You see yourself typing and scribbling notes. You see yourself checking your growing bank account
Try telling a story next time you want someone to understand their mistakes, make a big change in their life or see a situation from a different perspective. Taking them out of the hot seat and giving them the spectator’s viewpoint might teach them a lesson they would otherwise have to learn the hard way.
Want to Change the Way People Think? Start With a Great Story [The Good Men Project]