The Long Game is… Your Story in 30 Things

THE LONG GAME Podcast with Sandra Scaiano Your Story in 30 Things with Martie McNabb

“. . .your most powerful art is made from your own story.”

As a business owner, I find the same thing to be true with other content and social media. The most impactful posts or videos or podcasts come from the stories that reveal a bit about who you are.

That’s what today’s guest helps people do. Martie McNabb is here and we’re talking about why we keep what we keep. Martie is a personal historian and photo organizer.

She’s created a 30-day challenge with this premise: What 30 things would you keep telling your life’s story? This is a simple way to begin bringing your story to life.

Haunted by all the life stories that get stuck in a box, bag, or a suitcase or, worse, get surrendered to a flea market or auction, Martie McNabb created her business: Memories Out of the Box.

For over ten years, she’s been “writing” life stories with photos, documents, and memorabilia, turning them into a visual narrative of their owner’s life. Martie shares that many people can’t bring themselves to decide what to keep and those who can, don’t have the time to dive into all the things. She’s happy to do it for and with them.

To get the word out about her work, she started “Show and Tales” events where people could show up with something that helped tell their story. It’s how she and I met! I brought one of my baby dresses, that my daughter also wore.

Her events are ongoing. She shares how this has developed into a community. People walk in strangers and make connections, all from the power of telling their stories.  

Events now have themes like:

  • Cards, letters and thank you notes

  • The family jewels

  • Shoes boots hats and bags

  • Artifacts and totems

  • I also chat with Martie about her willingness to be visible. She doesn’t anything stop her from doing Facebook Live videos and connecting with her tribe. We both feel that it can be easier to share with people you don’t know so well than with our own family at times.

    “It’s a brave thing to put yourself out there.”

    Your Life in 30 Things Challenge #yourlifein30things

    What are the 30 objects that can tell your life story?

    This conversation reminded me of an old legal document that I found. It brought me back to the circumstances, leaving a job. I left because it didn’t fit with my values and it was over 20 years ago

    It was a great reminder and I realized that those same values still guide me today.

    To wrap up, we discuss several ways you can use some cherished items to help you create content. What better way to make connections with your audience?

    Tips to get started:

  • Don’t overthink it

  • Be open to what’s nearby (it doesn’t have to be precious)

  • Focus on moments

  • Links from Today’s Episode:

    Martie’s Website

    Show & Tales Playsheet

    What We Keep by Bill Shapiro and Naomi Wax

    The Power of Moments by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

    The Long Game is… Boundaries