Build Narrative Into Your Presentations

Lesson 5/7 - Using Metaphors & Similes


Build Narrative Into Your Presentations


Lesson Info

Using Metaphors & Similes

Using Metaphors and Similes, Yeah. This is one of our favorite exercises, it also can be a little bit silly, so we're gonna encourage everyone here and everyone at home to have some fun with us playing a game called Shakespeare Simile. So as Sammy mentioned in our previous class, there are some theories around how interesting it is, right Sammy, for, in our neurology to be able to create a simile, Hm-mm. right, that it's a huge leap for our brains to be able to make a metaphor or make a simile and connect those dots together. So the way that this game works and we're all gonna play it together first, is we're gonna take a noun and we're gonna take an emotion and then we're going to make the connection of my emotion is like a blank, because, and then we're gonna work to add that detail and just have fun and play together, you will notice that there is a an asterisk, that says there are bonus points for an exaggerated Shakespearean English accent, so please have fun with that, it...

can be very, very fun to do that, if you'd like. So why don't we kind of warm those muscles up and start to make those connections, this is also a great opportunity to trust that whatever your brain tells you is the right idea, whatever you say, there's a good chance that we will go, oh yeah, that makes total sense, even if it may not make sense at first, right. So let's give an example of this, someone give me an emotion, what are you feeling right now? Tell me how you're feeling, just give that emotion to the room. Anxiety. Anxiety, oh boy, I'm sorry. (laughing) Oh, great, I'm glad I asked, now I'm feeling that too, so anxiety and someone just give me a noun, what's something that you picture, that's a noun? Dump truck. Great, great, my anxiety is like a dump truck, because I can fill it and fill it and fill it and then I empty it and it fills up again and again and again in a never, neverending cycle, so is my anxiety like a dump truck, yeah, get the idea? Yeah? Yeah. How is your anxiety like a dump truck? Gets terrible gas mileage. (laughing) How so, tell me more? 'Cause my anxiety just doesn't run clean and is not good for the environment around me, No. My anxiety pollutes everything around me and around the others that I'm with, my anxiety rumbles down the road of life, making me feel like a construction worker with no end time to his day. Well said. I mean, I need to leave. I know. I don't know what that-- You've had a hard, this has been a hard class for you, this one specifically, Yeah. it started with Joey Baloney and it's just downhill from there. I mean, Joey Baloney would not be Nick Offices or whatever his name is, his friends. No, he would be, he would be, he was and he did, so you don't always-- I know, I know, I know. Sometimes you think you know people and you don't. Yeah, yeah, that story is like a dump truck. (laughs) It is, so it's just that, it's just the playing with the language and really letting our brains sort of build these connections, because this is going to inform some of the other exercises, that we do, so let's do that, let's, Jim, what's a positive emotion? Joyfulness. Joyfulness and then what's that noun, what's something that you see in the world? Rainbow. Rainbow, oh, my, so my joyfulness is like a rainbow, someone tell us, how is your joyfulness like a rainbow? Don't overthink it, just start talking. Flowering with amazing colors and spreading across the sky and touching all the people I love. That is how your joyfulness is like a rainbow? Beautiful, how else is your joyfulness like a rainbow? Jared has an idea, I can see in his face, yeah. (laughs) I don't know. Please say it, say it out loud for us, Are you sure? say my joyfulness is like a rainbow, because... My joyfulness is like a rainbow, because when I follow the rainbow to its end, I end up finding a pot of gold and I buy a lot of mead and mead makes me happy and full of joy, (laughing) that's why it's like a rainbow. (laughs) It is like a rainbow, that's exactly right. Are you Michael Caine? (laughing) Ivrina, you had an idea, I would love to hear it. Yes, my joyfulness is like a rainbow, because the rainbow is showing up after the rain, so when the... sad times happen or something unpleasant happens, I know it's like a rain, which will be over and there will be joyful time after that, like a rainbow. Oh, come on, that was beautiful, right? Ah, beautiful. I'm gonna put that right here, Is that, that's connection, that's a poem, that's gonna heal the joy below any trauma, give that to my wife. I can autograph later. Yeah, yeah. (laughing) Beautiful. My joyfulness is like a rainbow, because sometimes when you see it, it's right there in front of you and then you turn your head and it's gone again. (laughing) So-- My joyfulness is like a rainbow, Yeah? because... (laughing) Yes, Michael Caine. I'm doing a terrible impression of his impression of Michael Caine, yeah. of Michael Caine. Yeah. How, how? Because you can see through it sometimes, it's a little flimsy, it's not always there, it's something you can't really grab, but I was only 15 years old, that's it, Michael Caine quote. That's a Michael Caine quote, maybe we cut that out. No, please leave that in, if that's the whole class, I'd be very happy, thank you. (laughs) So you get the idea and it's a really fun exercise to just play around with this and start thinking like, and you can do this on your own at home, like literally you can open a book and you can think about like what are the emotions, look in an encyclopedia, there are actually websites online, that just have lists of emotions and you can play around with this idea of my anger is like a window, yes, my anger is like a window for you can see through it and when it is open, the breezes come through and when it is closed, it is enclosed and needs, something needs to get out, like whatever it is that comes to you, just playing with that, saying this and making the connection and saying this and making the connection back and forth is just a fun puzzle and exercise for your brain. Yeah, diversion thinking is really good for you and as we've said in another class in another exercise, that focuses on the subject matter, this allows what you're talking about to be more universal, so maybe we're replacing joyfulness and anxiety with a product or a business type or whatever it may be, the thing you're an expert in, Absolutely. and it may be just really hard for your audience to engage with and plug into, but that other thing, that you're describing it as, that abstraction of that idea concept is more universal and therefore it makes it more palatable for the people listening and they can lean in and be a little bit more engaged by what you're talking about and most likely get it a little quicker too, which is obviously what you're trying to make them do. In one of our other classes, we did an exercise called Venspiration and this is a great warmup for that, starting to think about how do we connect this with that and moving from emotion and noun into the product or the item and the passions, so it's a great warmup for that as well, if you'd like to combine the two. Yeah, perfect. Move along? Let's move along. Move along home. So-- Actually we didn't get a chance to get feedback from you, any thoughts about that, about that experience? You were laughing and smiling and your joy was like a rainbow obviously, any thoughts about that, before we move on? Yeah? It was just interesting to see that joyfulness could be something negative as well, like it's flimsy, or like anxiety could have been flipped to something positive, where it's not there as often or something, so it's just interesting to see which direction you can take it. Yes, and it can be a fun thing to run on that, so it can be fun to just take the one emotion and the noun and just see how far you can go with different iterations and different ideas on that one thing, 'cause you may find you hit that block of, I'm out of the negative kind of ideas and then you switch and your brain will find positive ways to frame things, so it can be a really fun way to just play with, to play with language and our brains love that, our brains love that kind of puzzling together. Great, thank you, thank you for sharing.

Class Description

When you watch a movie, read a book or even listen to a song, what’s the thing that draws you in? The story. By framing what you want to express within a narrative, you help people better understand, follow and care about what you’re saying.

Infusing stories in all of your business communications—from presentations to meetings to casual interactions—will get your colleagues to really listen to what you’re saying. They’ll also enjoy listening to you and never find you boring.

This class will help you develop ways to structure, create and explore narrative. We’ll use tried and true improvisational techniques as well easy, practical and applicable tools. By the end, you’ll be able to mesmerize your audiences and have them hanging on your every word.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Connect with others through story.
  • Use a story spine to craft your story, give it definition and develop mission visions.
  • Explore different ways to add story to everything you present and share.
  • Personalize your content so you can ease your nerves and establish deeper connections with your audience and colleagues.
  • Avoid presentations that are too long or too short, rambling, overly technical, and either too high level or too complex.
  • Conquer your stage fright by weaving in a familiar story so you can connect to yourself more deeply and feel a sense of calm on stage.
  • Inspire and engage your audience with a great hook that’s never boring.