Narrative as Connection—Myth, Story, and Experience

Twentieth-century political theorist and philosopher Hannah Arendt observed, “Story-telling reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it.”12 Indeed, “Tell me a story” is the most repeated refrain in millions of households around the world every night. We want to hear tales of success, of heroes, of tragedy. Hardly anyone says, “Will you read me a few bedtime concepts?” Concepts don’t create resonance; stories do. Leadership communication is about “growth” and “progress,” words that contain a past, a present, and a future—a story line.

Despite the universal scientific evidence and our collective intuitive sense that time is an illusion, it is, as Einstein said, “a most stubborn ...

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