My Life Story is Boring

2011 June 22
What is their life story?

What is their life story?

How many times has somebody said to me “But my life is so ordinary, it’s boring, they won’t be interested”?

Having just spent a weekend talking with people from all walks of life at a baby boomers and retiree’s expo the subject of an ordinary life of no interest to descendents was raised numerous times. It is true, some people have had what appears to be a more interesting life, more excitement, done more ‘things”, experienced more and have stories to tell. Lives like that are the raw materials for many a documentary and I love hearing about them myself.

Just as certainly I enjoy hearing family stories shared that seemingly are about the minutiae of life. Why? It is all very well to know through genealogical research that John was born in Dubbo (a regional town in country NSW Australia), lived from X date to Y date and was a plumber. But what was John like as a person? Where did he grow up? What was the house and family life like? What changes did John see in his life? What was his philosophy on life? What did he enjoy doing and was he particularly good at anything like sports or perhaps music or some other pastime?

At some stage in our lives most people ask the question “where do I come from”? This is the key question for the popular TV program “Who Do You Think You Are”. What makes me who I am? In asking those questions of ourselves a part of it is discovering more about those ancestors of ours who have come before. And, unless your particular family has been good at record keeping, been wealthy and well documented, had individuals who have been written about in newspapers or otherwise had significant actions recorded, then you are lucky to get more than a few snippets about the lives of those who have come before. Your descendents will be interested in your story. They will want to know about you and your life. Whether you sit down in a quiet moment and write the chapters of your life out long hand, sit at a computer and type or commission an Oral Historian such as myself to record your life story or that of a significant loved one in your family the thanks of your descendents will wring long and loud.

Each of us has a story or stories to pass on, the stories from our own life and the stories of our elders, both personally known or stories that have been passed on to us. Due to timing, those around you right now may not outwardly show interest in your story or give the impression that they already know your story. I bet they don’t but that is a subject for another time. It may not be your children, however, it may be your grandchildren or great grandchildren that go seeking to know more about you and the circumstances in which you lived.

With knowledge comes understanding, you can give a great personal gift to your descendents no matter how you preserve your story. It’s worth preserving and I can assure you it will not be boring to those who come after you.

For tips on how to make it easier to preserve your life story you may wish to view a series of free videos I have prepared. Just click on the link on “How to Write Your Personal Memoirs” to see the first in the series.

One Response leave one →
  1. Linda permalink
    June 28, 2011

    I agree completely with your post! Good for you! You made so many important points, like “those around you right now may not outwardly show interest in your story or give the impression that they already know your story. I bet they don’t but that is a subject for another time. It may not be your children, however, it may be your grandchildren or great grandchildren that go seeking to know more about you and the circumstances in which you lived.”

    I need to go back and read your piece again. Lots of good stuff there.

    Linda

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