I have mixed feelings when I see TV characters using ideas I have come up with previously. I should be proud by the validation, but envy and jealousy creep in. It makes me sad. Another lost opportunity. Another idea I never followed through on.
Tonight, On The Big Bang Theory, I watched Howard a therapy technique I developed years ago for stress and grieving and bad memories. A philosophy I had hoped to include in my book one day, will now be remembered as a steal from TV in 2012. Even if I ever publish online, my blog will have a link to that scene on you tube. I will be considered the copy, not the original.
In the scene, something bad had just happened, and in an attempt to deflect from bad thoughts, Howard asked Penny to marry him. Then he declares; :One day, this will be a funny story. Why don’t we just think of that way now.”
My entire premise, summed up perfectly by a nerd on a sitcom.
I’m sad, because it was of my most cherished theories. A way to lessen pain, by converting reality into story. It’s a part of my whole life philosophy based around stories.
All of our existence is just the stories we’ve been told.
Once you give in to the idea that the stories are the reality, not the truth, a whole new universe becomes available, and literally anything is possible, far beyond what we have been told. The moment you realize your existence is just the stories you tell, you gain a whole new outlook, and a special power.
Reality is the story – not the truth. The truth is just whatever story you believe.
The pen is mightier than the sword, because even when we lose a battle, history can tell any story it desires. All our history, up to this moment, is told as a story.
Look around you. The people who get noticed are the ones who tell the best stories. The people that can turn any regular event into a story, and tell it well. They’re the best sales people, the most successful at business, love, and life.
I believe we remember stories more than we remember what actually happened. As we re-tell events, we can change them, and we get to choose how we tell our own stories. We have complete control.
When something bad happens, we choose how we tell that story, and we select whether we remember it as a bad thing, or with a positive slant. Some people tend to always highlight the negative. Others are positive. I’m sure you can think of friends and family that fall into both categories.
When somebody dies, or faces another tragic story, we tell it differently in the moment than we may in a few weeks, months or years. Understanding the concept of stories can help you realize that you are the author of your own stories, and you can choose to tell the “5 years from now” version of any event today. It’s empowering.
I often use lines similar to Howard’s. I try to teach people to think of how they’ll tell this story in the future, and use that version now. Comedians say that “comedy is tragedy plus time”. Positive lessons often come from tragic events. Understanding that helps us cope.
I think of tragic events and say to myself; How will I tell this story in the future?
That’s how I think of it today.