Story and information

Years ago, I published a book about the practices of confident entrepreneurs. It was truly a struggle to get that book published. I had a decent premise, but I couldn’t tell the whole story by myself. I told my brother that I wanted to repurpose content from the first book I wrote about building confidence, but for entrepreneurs. He flat out told me I couldn’t write that book because I wasn’t successful enough. Stung by his words, when I rebounded, I realized he was right. I couldn’t tell the story of successful entrepreneurship because I hadn’t quite achieved that yet. I was determined to write the book and figured there had to be a different way.

Of course there was! I interviewed twelve entrepreneurs of different success levels and asked them for the daily practices for creating their success. I compiled the data and wrote the book. Mission accomplished, right? Wrong! Publishing costs money and I didn’t have any to spend. I didn’t want to crowdsource, and I didn’t want to take out a loan. I felt like I hit a brick wall until I deduced that I just asked twelve people – some that were uber successful like Jeff Hoffman of Priceline fame – how they became successful. If I engaged in all of those practices, I should be successful too. I did a social experiment to see if what they did would work for anybody and if it did, it would be proof that the practices of confident entrepreneurs mattered.

I compiled the practices into what I eventually called, The Daily Magnet. There are about ten or so activities to keep track of every day and each one is designed to address a different area of success. I tried it every day for 60 days. At the end, I had tripled my income, was attracting my ideal clients, was being offered speaking events and so much more. I raised the money I needed to publish the book and I felt validated that these practices truly worked.

I didn’t add The Daily Magnet to the book, but I did share a few lines in the conclusion that I practiced what the twelve entrepreneurs did and raised the money to publish the book. The fact that they held the book in their hands was proof that confident entrepreneurship mattered to their success. I neglected to outline the practices, thinking that the reader could extract those from the reading on their own.

After the book was published, I kept getting asked what specifically I did. I created The Daily Magnet without the context of the story of how it originated. I shared a description of each activity but neglected to share the story of how it originated or what my results were or why they should try it. After a while I stopped offering it. It did not make me the next Hal Elrod of The Miracle Morning, that’s for sure.

It wasn’t until much later that I realized how effective it is when I marry the story, with the why, with the results and also the how of the practices. I shared the story in one place and the process or information in another. It was difficult to understand because the whole package was never together in the same place. I failed to see that context matters – it is usually what allows us to connect to the information and make it applicable to our lives. The moral of this story is the marriage of story and information produces the best results!

About the author

Sheila Kennedy is a champion for storytellers, writers, authors and speakers. Zebra Ink Magazine is currently the home where storytellers can share their stories. Sheila celebrates courage, moxie, confidence and empowerment that is a by-product of trust and making choices. Every choice you make is another story to tell and a point of connection to another person. There are so many stories to unravel and people to influence when you find the courage to share. A two-time solo author, co-author of best- selling memoir of Justice Joseph D. Valentino (RET), and numerous anthologies, Sheila has been a part of the publishing industry as an author or publisher since 2013. She not only understands the technical parts of the industry, but also provides mentorship and coaching to aspiring authors and storytellers all over the globe.