Stories have got great power in communication. Primarily we need to understand that a well-told story is a complete piece of communication.
It has a definite beginning. Are we not familiar with the well-loved phrase, “Once upon a time”?
And stories do have a definite end. Again, we remember how we loved those fairy tales which ended, “And they lived happily ever after.”
There is action in a story. It gives our imagination a good exercise. Most stories arouse our curiosity. Thus we become active participants in the action when we listen to a story.
This power to engage the listener is so vital to communication. That is why a story succeeds in capturing attention where other speech techniques probably fail.
It is also important to understand that great stories do revolve around themes that lie close to life: Fight between good and evil, competing for love, honour, loyalty and sacrifice, war and hate, heroes and villains, journeys and dead-ends, explorations and conquest, myths and legends, light and darkness, death and beyond, pain and suffering, joy and fear, success and failure, birth and new beginnings. This list is by no means exhaustive.
Yet anything from personal life that touches one of these chords will not fail to captivate the audience if told well. And nothing surpasses the power of a story that ends with hope!