Discover Yourself

#ToEachHerOwn Campaign – Why it’s important to share & celebrate your story

September 18, 2018
Why it is important to share & celebrate your story

Lately, I’ve been contemplating life and why we sometimes feel pressure to follow what others are doing, rather than appreciating the good things about ourselves.

Sure, it is great to learn from others and I know that I have greatly appreciated learning from the wonderful women who are participating in my Over 50 & Thriving Series.  They are wise and wonderful and fill me with enthusiasm and inspiration as I read each of their stories.

However, it’s time to value and celebrate our own story – because we all have one!  Each of us has a story to tell, although many of us might feel that our story is boring.  However, to others it is fascinating, because it is the story of YOU.  Your story is a tapestry of your life, who influenced you, the challenges you faced as well as the good times. 

As I’ve written before, we are all special and unique and certainly this is worth a celebration!

ThirdLove is encouraging women to join in on the #ToEachHerOwn campaign empowering and celebrating the uniqueness of every women” and then share why you’re proud to join in on this as well!

The campaign is a topic I’m passionate about, however, instead of writing my story, (you can read about me here if you are interested), I wanted to explore ways we can share and celebrate our own personal stories and why it is so important that we do.

Why it is important to share & celebrate your story

Sharing and celebrating our story helps us to learn more about ourselves.  We often dismiss our qualities or experiences as not being important, yet they are what make us who we are.

Sharing our story is not just important for ourselves but it is also of importance to our children and grandchildren.  I lost my Mum to breast cancer over 32 years ago and I wish I had asked more questions about her story before she died.  I am fortunate to have a cousin, who was like another daughter to Mum, who fills me in on stories of my Mum before I was born or too little to remember.

 

Why it is so important to share your story.

4 ways to celebrate your story

1. Start writing your story

Recently, Jennifer Jones from Tracking Down the Family, started writing her Memoirs as part of the exercises in Patti Miller’s book Writing True Stories.  I hadn’t thought about doing this but writing your story is a wonderful way for you to remember your life and document it for future generations. 

Once you start documenting your story, you will probably remember things that you had forgotten about.  You may remember challenges you faced and overcame, which will remind you of your inner strength.

2. Celebrating your achievements

We all have achievements, some greater than others but they all matter! Many of us have been taught growing up not to ‘brag’ about our achievements in life. I disagree, we should celebrate and share, not to boast but simply to share our joy.

Apart from my children,  one of my biggest achievements in life has been running two marathons at 55 and 61 years old.  I celebrate my ability to keep fit and active as I age, and be a role model for others to be the best they can be.

3. Make a visual story

You probably have many photos in boxes or digital photos on your computer. I know I do!  Putting together your story in images can be another interesting way to tell your story 

I remember a few years ago, my daughter put together a photo album of my life to date with pages for me to continue.  She had placed them in sections of my life – childhood, marriage, children, etc. It was a beautiful gift and a lovely reminder of my life. 

4. Share your story through conversation

Have you thought of sitting down and sharing your story with your family?  Sometimes these moments can be special as you share what life was like for you as a child or other events in your life.  It is another way to connect and communicate with children and grandchildren, whilst at the same time giving them insight into who you are. I wish I had done that more with my Mum.

What is your story?  Which of my four suggestions would you choose to share and celebrate your story?

Let’s Keep Sizzling!

Why it is important to share & celebrate your story

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68 Comments

  • Reply Molly September 18, 2018 at 20:41

    I strongly believe everyone has a story to tell AND share! In fact, I’m currently working on a concept I’m calling Patchwork Memoir, which marries one photo (worth 1,000 words) with one essay to create a short story from our life. The memoir is simply a collection of these pieces gathered together, The finished product can then be passed down to the next generation who will (hopefully) begin to understand where I came from – why I believe what I do – and the values I hold dear.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:11

      Oh I love this idea Molly and will be ‘stealing’ it. It is exactly what I was trying to convey in the post so thank you for articulating it so well. I look forward to trying this method and would love to read yours as you progress. xx

      • Reply Molly September 23, 2018 at 08:04

        I look forward to sharing with you, Sue! I know we will learn from one another 🙂

  • Reply Debbie September 18, 2018 at 20:56

    Fabulous tips Sue, it is vital we tell our stories and share them. I love making photo books for special birthdays. It’s hard not to see telling of your achievements is bragging but it can be done. We need to ensure our stories are told to our families. Another great post 🙂

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:06

      I usually make photo books of our holidays, Deb but not so much about other areas of our lives. That will be a project over the coming months when I work out how to present it. Enjoy the rest of your week and hope you are getting lots of cuddles with Amelia 🙂

  • Reply Miriam September 18, 2018 at 21:51

    Wonderfully empowering post Sue. What a fabulous way of acknowledging and celebrating who we are. Sometimes I think that my blog has become a way of documenting who I am and what I love.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:31

      Thank you Miriam! Sometimes I surprise myself 🙂 I agree our blogs are a great way to document who you are and I always enjoy reading about you and your travels. Have a beautiful day xx

  • Reply Janet Mary Cobb September 18, 2018 at 22:45

    Another great post Sue — I always love to hear others’ stories!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:05

      Thanks Janet, we all have something unique to tell don’t we? x

  • Reply Samantha Smith September 19, 2018 at 05:55

    Great post Sue and such great ideas. I love taking photo’s and also looking at them. I make photo wall art of my family and adventures, one day I’m wanting to sort out the thousands I have still in boxes and maybe string a story together of the many adventures 🙂

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:03

      Hi Sam, yes I have 1,000s of photos and they are wasted on the computer. Your photo wall sounds lovely. I think I’m going to try to put together an album of photos with the story of each era of my life. Perhaps a photo book, something like that. Enjoy the rest of your week, Sam! xx

  • Reply Natalie September 19, 2018 at 07:01

    Great suggestions, Sue. I currently share my story through conversation with my family. Now I’m adding the ideas to write and create a visual story that includes my achievements in it to my ‘to do’ list.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:01

      Yes the idea came to me when I was writing the post, Natalie so I’m going to make that a project to work on over the next few months. Have a lovely week! xx

  • Reply Donna September 19, 2018 at 08:18

    Hi, Sue – Your words are so true, and very timely for me. For our recent combined birthday bash, Richard made three poster boards filled with pictures from different periods of my life, from birth to present. It is amazing what so many of my good friends did not know about me. The photos also inspired many meaningful conversations. #mlstl

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 08:23

      Hi Donna, I did that for my husband’s 60th and he did the same for me. We had a large screen and the photos were set to just keep scrolling through. It was a lovely reminder of our lives and it is funny how people still find things about us they never knew. xx

  • Reply Jennifer Jobes September 19, 2018 at 08:27

    Thankyou so much for the mention Sue. Telling our stories is so important. As a genealogist, when I’m researching a family for myself or a client, I would be very excited to come across a memoir written about the family. Since I started working my way through Patti Miller’s book, I’ve realised that we all have a story to tell. Most of us don’t realise that our lives are interesting enough to tell the story. Looking forward to hearing more about #Toeachherowncampaign #MLSTL Will share on SM

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 09:23

      I thought you post tied in very nicely with my topic Jen and would give people some ideas if they read your series. I’m always happy to share others’ blogs 🙂

  • Reply Agnes September 19, 2018 at 09:19

    I am so on the same page here, Sue!! We all love the stories of others yet hesitate to tell our own. A future project I’d like to pursue is to interview mid-life women… stories inspire, encourage, validate our own lives and I think all three are things we all could have more of in our lives. Each and every experience brought us to this place we find ourselves today and that fact alone makes them valuable. Lovely post! Thank you!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 19, 2018 at 09:25

      Oh I love the idea of the interviews Agnes. Sometimes being interviewed is easier because you have questions as prompts. I look forward to reading more about your project. An excellent idea 🙂

  • Reply Michele September 19, 2018 at 10:24

    I would love to write a family story someday. I would start with the ancestor information that I have researched and add in the pictures of the ancestors if they exist. Then I would add in the things from my lifetime, the stories my parents and grandparents told, and end with my immediate family. I have started by gathering all the information in one place, because it was scattered all over in different drawers and different photo albums. This is a good winter project when it is cold and we are snowbound!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:31

      It is a great winter project, Michele and although time consuming I think it would be fascinating. A wonderful family history for future generations xx

  • Reply Christie Hawkes September 19, 2018 at 10:47

    Well, Sue, you started me thinking. I have never considered writing my story or that anyone would find it interesting. Yet I am in the process of writing my Mom’s story, and my younger sister wrote a brief history of my grandmother’s life. Both of those are so valuable to me. Perhaps my children and grandchildren would feel the same about my story. It’s definitely something to think about. I agree with you that we all have a unique story to tell. In a way, my blog does that, and as you mentioned photo albums. I would also include social media in the mix–and my gratitude journals. #MLSTL

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:32

      Hi Christie, I hadn’t really thought about it until the campaign and I started thinking of what to write for the post. I miss my Mum and never asked her so many things before she died 32 years ago. I want my children and grandchildren to know about their past family and that includes me 🙂 xx

  • Reply Patrick Weseman September 19, 2018 at 13:01

    Super great suggestions. I really need to start doing this. Thanks for the great tips. #MLSTL

  • Reply Johanna Castro September 19, 2018 at 13:03

    I think it’s so important to celebrate our stories Sue. Not necessarily to publish them, but just to have them for future generations. I would love to know more about my Grandmother’s life and generation for instance, but there are only snippets. It takes time to create our stories, and I think a little bit every day is the way to go. I have a memoir sizzling, but not ready yet. For that I feel I need bigger chunks of time – in reality of course I don’t – it’s a mindset isn’t it! (Shared for #MLSTL)

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:35

      It does take time Jo and two of my cousins have all the information it is just a matter of putting it all together. My Mum died 30 odd years ago and I wish I had asked her more about her life growing up while I had her. I’m not sure I will write a memoir but I would like my grandchildren to know who their Nan was and what she did with her life. xx

  • Reply Jan Wild September 19, 2018 at 14:30

    I love the idea of writing a memoir. I started working through this via Julia Cameron’s book but I got waylaid, time to get back to it. Pinning this x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:30

      Thanks Jan and I’m sure a memoir can always be a WIP. It is great to look back on our life and document it in some way for future generations. xx

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au September 19, 2018 at 15:43

    This is a really interesting subject for me Sue because I feel like I’m one of the few Midlife women out there who isn’t excited about writing a memoir or talking at great length about my previous years. I feel like I live in the “now” and (although I enjoy snipptets) I find genealogies and long rambling stories of “when I was a girl…” really boring. I guess I have a short attention span!
    For those who enjoy story telling and sharing their previous 50+ years this is a great initiative and I think the company supporting it should be congratulated. Here’s to another great #MLSTL and I’ve shared this on my SM xx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:29

      Hi Leanne, I think the campaign is about encouraging women to realise they are unique. For me, losing my parents in their 60s and not having grandparents I sometimes long to know more about them. I’m not sure I will write a memoir but I would like my children and grandchildren to know who I am and see what I achieved over 50. 🙂

  • Reply Candi Randolph September 19, 2018 at 20:43

    I’ve found that creating my blog 7 months ago and writing regularly has been a way for me to share a part of myself…who I am, where I’ve been and where I’m headed, with others. And I found that I really love doing that, which was unexpected but I feel like it’s a bit like keeping a journal for me. Great post!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:26

      I agree, Candi, blogging was something I knew nothing about when I started but it really has enriched my life. xx

  • Reply Victoria September 20, 2018 at 04:35

    Writing the blog is how I share part of my story. But I tell my grandchildren all the time to ask questions if they want to know something about me. I regret not knowing more about my grandparents and I want my grandchildren to know me.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 20, 2018 at 07:25

      I’m the same Victoria, perhaps because I lost my parents in their 60s and my grandparents had died before I was born. I want my children and grandchildren to know me and also about their ancestors. xx

  • Reply jodie filogomo September 20, 2018 at 07:50

    I love this idea Sue!! Because you’re right…we all have a story. Like I always say, EVERY woman I meet has an interesting background and so much experience!!
    XOXO
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 23, 2018 at 08:07

      We sure do, Jodie although sometimes we don’t realise that we do. We all have much to offer and just look at your Mum and StepMum they are showing the way. xx

  • Reply Joanne Tracey September 20, 2018 at 18:09

    Great post. We all do have a story. I’m trying to compile my father’s story in an album for his 80th birthday next month. He doesn’t think he has one, but the more people I’m talking to, the story is definitely emerging.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 23, 2018 at 08:00

      What a lovely gift, Jo. When my husband turned 60 we had a party and I had photos in rotation from all of his life on a screen at the party. It was wonderful to see him as a child newly arrived from Italy to Australia at 4 years old. Precious memories. xx

  • Reply Denyse Whelan September 20, 2018 at 18:54

    I have been doing this more via the blog. I have family scrapbook albums which were relevant until both of our kids separated from partners. Cue: awkward photos and stories. Ah well. At least the grandkids can “see their parents” in these pics if they want when they get older. I tend to be the family memory keeper via photos and stories and to that end made albums for most of my grandkids before they were born and up to their 5th bdays. The last 3 did not get the full treatment as I was worn out but they have small albums. I made photo/story albums for my parents 40th, 50th and 60th Wedding Anniversaries. I did the powerpoint for Dad’s 90th. He wrote what he wanted under headings I gave me and I put it together. He was blown away. What he doesn’t know, turning 95 next year, is I will likely use it for his memorial service (if he ever does pass on…sorry Sue!!).
    The blog has become my story-telling space and I print off the posts on cancer for a folder and the ones on Telling My Story so they can be read by those not with computers.
    Photos…well I have 37,000 on this computer AND they only go back to 2012….yep, I keep the records!!

    Denyse x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 23, 2018 at 08:01

      Wow Denyse! 37,000 photos you do keep records don’t you. Great idea to print off your posts because I see a book in your journey. Have a great week! xx

  • Reply Trisha Faye September 20, 2018 at 22:19

    Wonderful post with great thoughts about celebrating our own uniqueness.
    Sharing for MLSTL

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 23, 2018 at 08:02

      Thank you for sharing Trisha and have a beautiful day. xx

    • Reply Denyse Whelan September 26, 2018 at 11:03

      Thank you Sue. My photos also save to the cloud. I actually have a hard time deleting them because of that. Nevertheless my photos are precious. Photos from pre on-line times are in albums with dates on outside. My daughter and her then teen daughter helped me out there as a family project. The other thing I have done is each family member has a place in a carry-file and I can source pics there from their history. I share photos other than me (& B occasionally) rarely on line now because of family situations and changes and that privacy is paramount. When it’s my grandkids’ birthdays I make a mini-collage inside their cards so they can see all the fun times we remember having with them even though they are growing up fast.
      Denyse x

      • Reply Sue Loncaric September 27, 2018 at 08:45

        I have photos of my grandparents and other relatives from previous generations. Even though I have never met them it is lovely to have a history of my family. Photos are such an important part of memories. I love your idea of a mini-collage inside their cards which I might borrow with your permission.

        • Reply Denyse Whelan October 19, 2018 at 18:14

          of course…the grandkids love seeing themselves at different ages.

  • Reply 1010ParkPlace September 20, 2018 at 23:52

    This is a deep and meaningful post Sue. Thank you! On Brenda’s Blog I share a lot of my life, things that are mundane as well as shocking. In almost every post someone will leave me a comment or email me about how they needed to hear what I’d written. They make my week when they open up and tell me that, My readers don’t understand that they’ve just given me a gift. We don’t have God’s view of the world and our place in it, but if we’ve touched even one life and made it better, then we’ve accomplished a lot. #MLSTL xoxox, Brenda

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 23, 2018 at 08:05

      Hello Brenda, I feel exactly the same way. If I can inspire or motivate other women to feel better about their lives it just fills me with joy and satisfaction. Have a beautiful weekend and thank you for making a wonderful contribution to helping Women through your blog. xx

  • Reply Kalpana September 21, 2018 at 17:25

    What a great point. I’m writing a novel and don’t want to write a memoir so I think I’ll go with your point number 2. Showing off.

  • Reply Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit September 22, 2018 at 14:55

    Love that Marilyn quote. It’s one I’ve shared with my daughter xoxo #teamlovinlife

  • Reply Bronnie - Maid In Australia September 23, 2018 at 21:38

    I love this idea. I have so many photo on my computer, and really need to print them out and put them into a book where we can enjoy them. As my friends keep reminding me, Christmas is coming, so it might be a oood gift idea!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric September 26, 2018 at 07:32

      That does sound like a perfect gift idea Bronnie and you still have time to organise them. I’d love to hear about your finished product. I might do the same so thanks for the idea! Have a great week! xx

  • Reply Rebecca Forstadt Olkowski September 30, 2018 at 05:14

    The reason I love blogging is that I can talk about what’s going on in my life. For me, that’s been the best way. Although, I admit I hold back for fear of saying something that may be offensive or shocking. One day, I’ll write a book.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric October 1, 2018 at 07:25

      I try not to say anything too provocative Rebecca, I’m not very good with confrontation. Good luck with your book it is just a matter of getting started, isn’t it? Have a beautiful week. xx

  • Reply Jean | DelightfulRepast.com October 14, 2018 at 00:25

    Sue, I’m definitely going to be giving this post multiple readings and much thought. I have only shared tiny bits of my story through my blog (and, this week, on Leanne’s Cresting the Hill blog).

  • Reply Lisa October 19, 2018 at 23:52

    Hello! I’ve found your blog through the Bloggers Pit Stop #145 and am now following you! I hope you would consider looking at my family blog and seeing what you think! Your site is really well laid out and I love the positive vibes. Have a great Friday!
    ~Lisa
    http://kevinandlisaauger.blogspot.com/

  • Reply Amy October 28, 2018 at 00:38

    This is an awesome idea. I often think of my blog as “sharing my story”. My husband worries though that it will all disappear someday and wants me to print it out, but after 8 years of blogging, that would take a lot of time and paper!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric October 29, 2018 at 07:06

      Hi Amy, I can’t imagine blogging for that long so well done. I’m coming up to my 4th year and sometimes I think I should try to save my writing in some way as it is a reflection of who I am. You are right though, we would need to cut down many trees to have a printed copy. Perhaps I’ll just try to save to my hard drive! Have a great week and enjoy! xx

  • Reply Lydia C. Lee November 5, 2018 at 05:47

    I don’t really compare myself to over people – with age I’ve become extremely comfortable in my own, odd skin, but I do like to take wisdom from others and pass it on. I will contemplate how to write this into #MyOwnStory (opps – even having just read it, I mucked up the hashtag! #Toeachherown)

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 5, 2018 at 06:17

      Hi Lydia! I love learning from others and taking what I think is right for me and my life. P.S. I always get the hashtags wrong too but maybe you have started a new one #MyOwnStory 🙂

  • Reply Johanna Castro November 8, 2018 at 17:34

    Already commented – so sharing 🙂 xx #MLSTL

  • Reply Bethany @ Happily Loco November 25, 2018 at 12:42

    I am late to this conversation, but it is at the top of your blog, tempting me, so here I am! 😉 This is why I started blogging again! I am not sure what my story is. At one point, I wrote a very personal blog post (on my old blog, and I have since taken the post down, since I am back in touch with a person referenced in it) about a co-dependent/abusive friendship I had as a teenager. I thought that was my story.

    But it is not. It is part of the reason that I am who I am, but there is so much more. I think my story will always be in the process of being written. I am currently writing a book about the trauma I experienced over the past year, but I also know that is not my whole story. I am still becoming.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 26, 2018 at 07:10

      Hi Bethany, you can never be too late to a conversation at Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond 🙂 I’m so pleased you were tempted by the post and have left a comment on how you are feeling. Our stories will always be a WIP but isn’t it wonderful to share them – both the good and the bad – because our story reflects the person we are or still becoming, as you said. Have a beautiful week and thanks for stopping by xx

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