Story the Future

Worried you missed it?

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IT’S ALL ABOUT STORY. We know you’ve got an insatiable curiosity to hear ALL our amazing content. There’s so much to learn and so much to be inspired by…

2019 LEARNING ENCOUNTER: 13 international speakers, 6 amazing workshops — innovative and immediately practical content

2018 SUMMIT: 75 international speakers, a world of story applications, 3 live events — a masterclass three times over

Get a friend, grab a coffee (or tea!) and get learning!

Get a friend, grab a coffee (or tea!) and get learning!

Make time to expand your universe and deepen your story practice!!!

Buy the ALL ACCESS Pass and you could view ALL our free content to your heart’s content. You’ll receive access to EVERYTHING (and that includes recordings of our 13 speakers and six hands-on workshops from 2019 + access to the 75 interviews from the 2018 Summit). That’s more than 56 hours of content!

Our Facebook group will stay open too, so get yourself in there and join our generous and active community sharing insights and ideas. We are continuing to offer new speakers through Facebook Live — join us!

Access to EVERYTHING until the end of June


Activate your narrative change skills

Learn the secrets for activating “narrative change” skills from seasoned practitioners

Recently, we hosted the Story The Future Summit right here in this online space. (Perhaps you were a part of it!) During that experience, many of our community members had an epiphany: “I’m a story practitioner, and I didn’t know it!” Our response: Yes! You are! In fact you have more influence than you realize!

Since then, many people have come to Story The Future with the same request: “Can you teach me how to do this?” And once again, our response is yes!

Introducing Story the Future Learning Encounters.


"The most powerful person in the world is the STORYTELLER… The Storyteller sets the vision, values & agenda of an entire generation that is to come."

Steve Jobs, as recounted by Tomas Highboy, Journalist


Ready to roll up your sleeves and build your skills as a practitioner of storied changemaking?

Join from anywhere, go at your own pace

Join from anywhere, go at your own pace

Learn from expert narrative change practitioners

Learn from expert narrative change practitioners

Put your skills to work immediately

Put your skills to work immediately

STF Learning Encounters focus on the “how to” of story. Our narrative change practitioners will share specific practices and techniques — in straightforward “how to” language — that you can begin to apply immediately. If you’ve ever thought, “I’d like to learn how to do this work,” we will show you how!

Each week you will experience a series of free interviews pointing to the different aspects of storymaking and storyshaping. Each interview will be available for the week in which it appears. Then, as part of the paid experience, you’ll gain access to skill-building “how to” workshops in which our faculty of global story practitioners share all of their secrets and best practices with you! We will be offering two skill-building sessions each week. Join us live or watch the recording at a time convenient to you.

  • In week 1 you will learn to work with your own stories to become a better and more confident practitioner.

  • In Week 2 you will explore how to use stories in community.

  • In week 3 you will take a closer look at how to use story for deep transformation.

  • And then, on Sunday 27 of January, we invite you to a free online community conversation with our speakers to talk about all of this in person.

The interviews and community gathering on January 27th are free to all (video interviews available on a limited time basis). Register to join in via the button on the left, below.

Buy the ALL-ACCESS Pass and receive unlimited access to all the interviews through June 30, 2019 and the community gathering on Jan 27th, PLUS full participation in all six online workshops below, AND the 2018 Online Summit Archives. All this for only $297.00. We offer 30% off for groups of three or more - contact us for the discount code.

I’m ready, sign me up!

Here’s Your Learning Agenda

Week One (21 - 27 January): Self as instrument -- working with your own story

You will learn how to:

  • Continue to work with your own story, and discover how it strengthens your foundation for success

  • Become aware of the stories that shape your worldview and agency

  • Reframe your stories to show up with presence and self-awareness

  • Find new stories that surface new dimensions of who you are


  • Christina Baldwin: Living Life as a Story — Who we are, what we want to accomplish with our lives, who we know, work with, love or hate or fear, the challenges and opportunities that surround us are not just a daily jumble—all these elements are story. When we understand the power of story, we can harness personal narratives that guides us through all modern distractions.

  • Michael D McCarty: You think you don’t have a story? Guess again! — Easy ways to prompt and work with stories from yourself and others.

  • Chené Swart: Re-Authoring Your World Moments are like magical doorways opening up a treasure chest of hidden stories that can re-connect us to our relatedness with all the things of the world.  How can we invite these magical moments to inform the stories of our lives? How can we connect these magical moments and weave strong and rich stories to live from? When these hidden stories are re-membered and woven back into our lives, our relationship with ourselves, our neighbours and the world shifts in a profound way. 

  • David Drake: Bringing New Stories to Life—What if everything we needed was right in front of us? What if we saw our stories as thresholds to cross? Thinking about stories this way enables us to show up in any moment with what is needed most right now. Bringing new stories to life requires a shift in our mindset from consumption to contemplation, from commodity to community, and from coping to contribution.

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Wednesday 23 January: Christina Baldwin — Life Hangs on a Narrative Thread

Once we understand the power of story, we can work with our own narratives in creative and sustaining ways. In this on-line workshop we will explore how to work with turning point moments, notice how we make story of every interesting life event, and how to work with that story to support our goals and adjust to changing life circumstances in empowering ways. Each participant will work with one turning point moment, taking that original event through all the steps of story-making, spinning reality and lessons learned into a self-empowering narrative. This is the inner work of life.

Thursday 24 January: Madelyn Blair — Unlock Your Resilient Leader:  Building personal resilience through story

Balancing the many demands of life, work, relationships and community requires more than goal-setting, more than effort, and more than vision. It demands resilience. Dr Madelyn Blair’s extensive research on resilience at every level shows only 10% of people showed high levels of resilience. Dr Blair defines a resilient leader as someone who can bring themselves, their teams, and their organization through difficult times and continue to thrive while doing so. She found they have a purposeful practice of competencies to support them. 

In this workshop, you will learn about The Phenomenal Four — the four practices that help you build your resilience. We will dive deeply in how story can become one of the most practical and useful cornerstones of your more productive, focused and resilient life. You will take away simple and practical tips on how to find and work with your own personal stories to help you thrive.


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Sunday 27 January: An Open Conversation about StoryMaking and StoryShaping in a Divided World

Join us for a stimulating, thought-provoking and highly participatory conversation about the challenges, practices and dreams we hold around making and shaping the stories we live in.

This conversation takes place at 10:00 - 12:00 Pacific time / 1:00 - 3:00 Eastern time / 19:00 - 21:00 CET on Zoom

Join the STORY THE FUTURE Hosting Team and our Learning Encounter speakers as we talk about our experiences, our methods and tools and vision for this work going forward. Participating is FREE, and if you are registered, you will automatically get the details! Join us!

Everyone who has registered for a Free Pass or an All-Access Pass is welcome to join us for this community event

Week Two (28 January - 3 February): Working with story to create community and engagement

You will learn how to:

  • Apply story to support community understanding and engagement

  • Exercise basic skills for working with story in groups or systems

  • Connect narrative to the work of: creating knowledge; developing identity; and engaging people to act


  • Juanita Brown: The Power of Story: A 50 year JourneyJuanita takes us on the journey of a 50 year arc of the power of story in her life and work. Beginning with the Farm Worker’s movement and the power of story to change human rights, through story’s impact on the worldwide participatory process movement that is World Café and coming to home ground on her family’s farm in North Carolina as the medium for creating a new place-based story of rural hope and future.

  • Peter Block: The Story of Community and Belonging — Working with the power of community to tackle challenging issues and invite new stories to arise. A conversation about reweaving the social fabric, leadership through convening, confronting people with their freedom and what it means to tell your story to a stranger.

  • Lorna Czarnota: The Story of Youth at Risk  — In 1995 Lorna’s niece ran away from home. That catapulted her into using her story skills to support youth at risk, in shelters, treatment centers and transition homes. As a trained teacher, with a background in Special Education and trauma counseling certification, she is a staunch advocate for the power of story in changing the way people see community and themselves. Here’s what you need to know before going in.

  • Kevin Cordi: Walking inside your Story: A new way to teach and learn — If you are a teacher, storyteller, community organizer, inquiry can help you build connections.  Add the story making process and the inquiry can be realized.   Learn this process called “Ensemble Storytelling” to find out more.

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Tuesday 29 January: David Hutchens — Hosting a Story Circle for Knowledge Sharing

One of the most powerful structures for sharing knowledge in your team or organization is through a story circle. David Hutchens has been working with leaders in some of the world’s most influential organizations to help them unleash and activate the wisdom of the organization by telling stories. 

In this session, he’ll show you exactly how he brings people together in a story circle for the purpose of generating meaning and accessing wisdom. He will show you how to bring this ageless structure to life whether your context is a community organization, a global technology firm, a classroom, or even your own dinner table.  You and your teams will be surprised to discover what an energizing and inspiring way it is to talk about the work that matters most to you! 


Wednesday 30 January: Mary Alice Arthur — Working with Collective Story Harvest

So many of us are focusing on story and storytelling as a tool for getting the word out there, but we forget about working with the bounty our stories carry.  Creating a medium for collective sense and meaning making is a game changer, especially in conflicted systems. Stories are the ideal change partner.

In this hands-on workshop, Mary Alice introduces the simple, but powerful tool of Collective Story Harvest. It’s a methodology you can put to work immediately to mine the wealth of information your stories of experience, projects, groups, organisations and systems carry.

Week Three (4- 10 February): Working with story for deep transformation

You will learn:

  • How stories impact the future possibilities of systems and societies

  • How to design for lasting, sustainable change and insights for keeping the work aliv

  • Practical tools for engaging story-based transformation


  • Paul Costello: Narrative Mapping — Knowing your place in a story is as important as knowing the story itself. Paul uncovers new territory through narrative mapping and shares his experiences in working to shift major conflict narratives.

  • Samantha Slade: Letting your story lead — Reimagining organisation in service of people and conscious collaboration: We seem to be living in a competitive, consumer driven storyline. What if it It doesn’t have to be that way? We talk about how a key personal story has led to a lifetime of dedication to business as a lever for change and innovative new thought on balancing the commercial and the commons.

  • Mike Love: Shifting the Story of Poverty — Sharing the learning, challenges and journey of the Leeds Poverty Truth Commission as it enters its third year. How do you make sure the stories and voices of people impacted by issues are heard and acted on?

  • Colin Craig — What’s Underneath the Iceberg of Conflict? — Colin outlines the model for Dialogue for Peaceful Change and how narrative underpins the escalation and de-escalation of conflict.

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 Wednesday 6 February: Samantha Slade — Bringing Life Back into Work

Current research shows that only 15% of people worldwide show up at work happy to be there. What about the rest of us? Many of us muddle through, or find work is something we do in order to be able to live. And for so many of us, work can feel like a place where we remain unseen, unfulfilled or sidelined, or it may even be a toxic place. A place where our stories and our hearts are asked to stay at the door, while our heads and hands get on with it.

What are the practices that can help us work differently in business? What are the ways we can show up differently, even change the rules of the game?  Samantha takes us on a journey back to life in the workplace.


Thursday 7 February: David Drake —  Rewinding Your Story to Achieve Real Change in Real Time

Given the speed and complexity of life these days, it is easy to get triggered by even small events. We often lose sight of the connections between our stories, our behaviors and our outcomes. David will share a simple yet profound tool he has taught all over the world to help practitioners and organizations become more mindful and masterful with their stories in order to get better results.

In this session, you will be guided to reflect on one of your own stories to discover where you are getting in your own way. You will then rewind that story to discover how to get to a better outcome next time. It is a great resource you can use in any moment to reframe your experience, pivot in a new direction and achieve what you matters most to you.


Bonus Interviews

A combination of new interviews and archive material from our 2018 Summit:


Week One

  • Charlotte Blake Alston — “There’s a quote from Lucille Clifton I like to share: “They ask me to remember, but they want me to remember THEIR memories - and I keep on remembering mine”. That quote cuts right to the core of why I choose to pass down traditional tales. My heart, soul, bones, blood, ancestors, Spirits yet to be born - yearn to remember and tell OUR stories.” 

  • Richard Olivier — Why knowing your archetype can make all the difference to your agency in the world.

  • Roi Gal-Or — Living the storyteller’s life — how stories can change the way we view the moments we live in.

Week Two

  • Wendy Morris — Taking story and arts into local government creates a profound impact on productivity and connection.

  • Story Bridge — Working with the individual stories of community members to portray the story that ties them together

  • Joe Lambert — Practical tips for how you can work with digital storytelling.

  • Kiran Singh Shah — Storytelling is peace building. Learn from the international career of a storytelling peace builder.

Week Three

  • Patrick Reinsborough — Uses story-centred strategy to grapple with some of the largest issues of our times.

  • Mary Alice Arthur — Distills her wisdom down into the 10 practices of Story Activism.

  • Martin Rutte — Knowing you want to change the world should never stop you, especially when you can answer the question: “What’s your simple?”. Introducing Project Heaven on Earth.

  • Mike Smith: The Names Project forever changed the way we view AIDS and the communities impacted by it. Hear how it changed the wider story we live in.

Meet Your Hosts

STORY THE FUTURE brings together the world’s foremost practitioners of story and narrative-based change to offer access to people everywhere who want to learn. It came from the minds and hearts of four story practitioners who wanted to offer a place where people could meet, exchange practice and ideas and understand their own agency around story. Read more about us and why we’re excited about Story The Future below.


Mary Alice Arthur

Mary Alice Arthur is a Story Activist, working around the world using Story to help make positive systemic shift and for applying collective intelligence to the critical issues of our times.



David Drake

Dr David Drake founded the field of narrative coaching and has taught coaching skills to over 15,000 leaders, managers and professionals in twenty countries.



David Hutchens

David Hutchens has been exploring the intersection of narrative, leadership, and complex systems change for more than 20 years and is the author of “Circle of the 9 Muses.”



Amy Lenzo

Amy Lenzo has been actively in hosting online engagements for over 20 years, working with some of the most influential writers, thinkers, and social entrepreneurs of our time.


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 Is this for me?

This experience is for you if:

  • You have been intrigued by people who “do story work” and would like to understand what this practice is all about

  • You are looking for ideas to enrich your current change practice

  • You already “do story work” and are looking for fresh methodologies

  • You yearn for better conversations, and ways to bring people together in a divided world with more trust, authenticity, and humanity

  • You are bringing a group together (in your business, neighborhood, church, community, or family) and would like to experience how story can lead to identity formation, knowledge creation, learning, or deep engagement for change.

  • You want to do the “inner work” and develop new awareness around your own story.

Who will benefit from this Learning Encounter?

  • Change agents

  • Business leaders

  • Community leaders

  • Religious leaders

  • Teachers, trainers, and facilitators

  • People who aspire to any of the above roles!

  • Anyone fascinated by story