Erica Marx

I could tell you a story about...

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Players complete the sentence "I could tell you a story about...", responding to the facilitator's prompt of the nature of the story. The story is not told as part of the exercise.



awareness of how two concepts can be very related (ie. fear / courage, hope/despair, having privilege / not having privilege)


The facilitator introduces the two themes, for example courage and fear.

Participants are instructed to complete a sentence by filling in the rest of a sentence that begins with the prompt "I could tell you a story about..."
The completion of each sentence alternates between to the two topics (ie. fear, courage). For example, "I could tell you a story about leaving my first job" or "I could tell you a story about when I came out to my dad"

One way to play would to be to have each person completely 2 sentences, each one reflective of one prompt.

Another way to play could be to divide the group in 2 (ie. quickly send to breakout rooms and assign the group either the topic of fear or courage) and then bring the group together to share the sentences, without knowledge of whether someone is sharing a fear or courage story. 

This structure can be used with any 2 interrelated topics, such as hope and despair or played on a single topic without interrelation. When used for 2 topics the debrief is often about how these 2 topics are interrelated. This exercise can be used to prime storytelling where some stories are then shared. 

What patterns did you notice? What was similar in the stories? What did you find yourself thinking as you listened to the story topics? What insights did you have? How does what you noticed relate to X topic?


Taught by Shannon Hughes in AIN open space

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Erica Marx Coaching​

– Leadership Coaching and Executive Facilitation –

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