Storytelling : The Connection Conundrum

Just before dinner last night, my daughter and I were on the phone to my mother. At one stage during the call we had a big laugh. Later, during dinner my husband asked, “ Why were you guys laughing?”

I asked him, “Do you want the facts or the story? His response, which I had already anticipated was, “Just give me the facts, no time for a story.”  My daughter is better suited to give facts. So, I asked her, “Go on, tell your dad.” She told him the facts and as expected my husband said, “And what was so funny about that?”  I then asked him, ” Shall I now tell you the story?” He reluctantly agreed, I told him the story and within 2-3 mins we were all laughing.

What is the point?

Now, both my husband and my daughter’s decision to want to hear or tell the facts alone is driven by the human nature to want to conserve energy. According to my daughter, if she tells a story, she is going to spend so much energy and according to my husband, he is going to spend all that energy in trying to listen to the story.

Human beings are biologically designed to conserve energy. So they make decisions in favour of whatever is going to help them conserve energy. 

Our innate desire to conserve energy is worst in a corporate setting because it is also time poor. We strip our communication down to facts, which in fact, rarely has the ability to make you feel and as result, can never make the desired change happen. 

When my daughter told the facts connection was lost. I wish I had recorded my daughter tell the facts but here is a very old Nokia commercial that gives you a good idea of how she told her father what happened.

 Our need to conserve energy should never be greater than our need to create connection.

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