top of page

Storytelling for Transformation: Shedding Past Narratives

Updated: Oct 8, 2023

Stories have always played a central role in the human experience. We use them to entertain, inform, and connect with one another. However, stories also have the power to transform our lives, especially when we consciously engage with them to shed past narratives that no longer serve us. In this blog, we will explore the concept of storytelling for transformation, utilizing the SHED framework to guide us on this journey of self-discovery and growth. As Stephen Richards once

said, "If you want something different, you have to do something different." Let's discover how storytelling can be that "something different" to lead us toward personal transformation.

The Power of Stories

Stories have the unique ability to shape our beliefs, behaviors, and perspectives. From the fables we heard as children to the anecdotes shared with friends over a cup of coffee, narratives have a profound impact on our lives. Our personal narratives, the stories we tell ourselves about who we are and what we are capable of, can either propel us forward or hold us back.

The SHED Framework

To embark on a journey of transformation through storytelling, we can turn to the SHED framework as our guide. SHED stands for:

  1. Self-Reflection: The first step in the SHED framework is self-reflection. It involves taking a deep look within ourselves and acknowledging the stories we have been telling ourselves. Are these stories empowering us, or are they limiting our potential? This phase requires honesty and introspection.

  2. Honesty / Harnessing Metacognition: Honesty is a critical component of self-reflection. We must be willing to confront the stories that have been holding us back. This may involve admitting our fears, insecurities, and past failures. As the saying goes, "The truth will set you free."

  3. Exploration / Evaluation: Once we have identified the stories that need shedding, we can begin exploring alternative narratives. What new stories can we create for ourselves that better align with our goals, values, and aspirations? This phase allows us to tap into our creativity and imagination.

  4. Determination / Develop New Narrative: Transformation is not always easy. It requires determination and the commitment to take action. We must be willing to rewrite our stories and make consistent efforts to live by the new narratives we create.

Shedding Past Narratives

Shedding past narratives is often easier said than done. We become attached to these stories because they are familiar, even if they are not serving us well. However, Stephen Richards' wisdom reminds us that if we desire something different in life, we must take action to bring about change.

Here are some practical steps to help you shed past narratives and embrace new, empowering stories:

  1. Identify Limiting Beliefs: Take a close look at the beliefs that have been holding you back. Are they based on facts or assumptions? Challenge these beliefs and seek evidence to the contrary.

  2. Rewrite Your Story: With honesty and self-reflection, rewrite your personal narrative. Focus on the positive aspects of your journey, your strengths, and your potential. Create a story that empowers you.

  3. Visualize Success: Visualization is a powerful tool for transformation. Imagine yourself living the new narrative you've created. What does success look and feel like? Visualizing success can motivate and inspire you.

  4. Seek Support: Share your journey with trusted friends, family members, or a therapist. Having a support system can make it easier to shed past narratives and stay committed to your transformation.

Storytelling for transformation is a powerful tool that allows us to shed past narratives that no longer serve us. By embracing the SHED framework and following the guidance of Stephen Richards' quote, we can break free from limiting beliefs and create new, empowering stories for ourselves. Remember, if you want something different, you have to do something different. Start by telling yourself a new story—one that leads you toward personal growth, fulfillment, and a transformed life.


Juli Reynolds is a Nurse Coach who helps women to get clear on their purpose, align their values and passion, to make the impact they desire without sacrificing their overall wellbeing. Sign up for her Free Guide to the 7 Steps to Moving Freely in the Direction of your Dreams.


bottom of page