Lost and Found

I’m not very good at keeping track of objects.

Part of this is because I’ve moved a lot in my life (maybe 20 times? I’ve lost count).

Part of this is because I’m often daydreaming and talking to trees.

But because of my tendency to lose things – keys, pants, notebooks, phones, wallets, chapstick, water bottles, earbuds – I’ve come up with systems to know where my stuff is.

So now, our house is outfitted with a series of bowls, hooks, and caches of Frequently Used Objects.

My travel backpack is an exquisitely and methodically assembled ‘go bag’ with everything I need.

Also? I am a tyrant about returning Things to their Homes.

Part of tyrannical fervor comes from my mama.

When my brother and I were kids, she had a ballpoint pen.

We’d ask to use it.

As she’d unzip the zipper of her purse to retrieve it, she would recite the ‘I Am Giving You My Pen And I Will Be Making Sure You Return It’ ceremonial recitation.

Back then, I found this a bit much.

But now?

I see the wisdom of her Return-This-To-Its-Home ways.

Notice: my story about losing things is also a story about finding ways not to lose things as much. (And a story about how wise my mom is.)

See how that works?

In the hero’s story, asking oneself ‘what have I lost?’ is a call to adventure.

Most people avoid asking themselves questions like this.

Most people want to stay on their ‘couch of comfort’.

Most people don’t want to go on adventures.

But the hero who hears the call and crosses the threshold into the Unknown is guaranteed to find something that people who stay on their couches never will.

In the hero’s story, we call this the Elixir.

The Reward.

The Prize.

You could also say that it’s what you find, after you lose something.

What if everything you’ve lost contains a little diamond in it?

That’s what we’ll be chewing on in this session of Writing Your Way Home.

And talking about.

And tucking in our back pockets as we move through the months ahead.

Who knows what each of our heroes will discover?

I certainly don’t!

But can’t wait to find out.

Stella Orange teaches her clients how to effectively market their business by telling a better story in their marketing— the story of the hero answering the call to more. A professional copywriter whose writing has generated millions of dollars in sales, Stella knows that the story we tell in our marketing matters a whole lot, because on a fundamental level, it shapes how people think about themselves and what’s even possible for them. Three times a month, Stella hosts a 90-minute Shut Up And Write session via videoconference for members of her Write Club community. She is based in Buffalo, New York, where she lives with her husband, the Philosopher, and their dog, Chachi. Get a copy of Stella’s position paper The New Marketing: How to Create Clients Without Feeling Gross, Icky or Manipulative at www.stellaorange.com/newmarketing.

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