THE BLOG
12/15/2011 10:39 am ET Updated Feb 14, 2012

Rekindling, Sparkling and Lighting the Flame Within Through Story

For the holidays, I love the idea of sparking, lighting and rekindling our spirits through feelings of connection with those around us. How do we take the time to connect when life is so busy and moving so quickly? For many of us, the holiday season is a blur because of all that we have to get done. We move through our obligations, get together with friends and family, attend parties, and go through the motions but it isn't until something catches us off guard -- such as a person understanding our story or taking the time to listen -- that we truly feel connected. When we take the time to be present in the moment and feel what is going on around us, we create the opportunity to really feel the season. Rekindling, sparking and lighting the flame within are actions that we can all take to inspire one another. Giving and adding to someone's spirit is a way of keeping our own flame lit from within. It is amazing how good we feel when we know that we've made a difference in another person's life. We connect through shared experiences. How do we do this? By understanding our own story and the myriad of emotions that come with it so that when we see others going through the same kind of experience, we can relate, empathize and help them out of the darkness by using our own story and knowledge to light the way.

I was inspired to write this blog entry after reading this quote by Albert Schweitzer: "At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us." This concept inspired the thought that we each have the ability to light a flame in others through our energy, words and actions. When we think about those who have entered our lives and lit the way, we give gratitude for what they empowered in our own lives. It might have been a teacher that encouraged us, a boss who believed in our possibility, a random person who took the time to reinforce our strengths, or a parent who inspired our work ethic and helped us to see our true value. It might have been a story of another person's trials and tribulations that led to our own desire to use their story as a way to inspire our own. When we think of the moments in our lives when someone else ignited our spirit, it helps us see how we can do the same for another.

Story is definitely a huge part of this. When we think about our own story and the stories of others, we draw from this space to create. When we see or hear about others doing kind things and getting positive results, it makes us want to do the same. Story is the one thing that unites us because we all have one. Through utilizing the actions of rekindling, sparking and lighting, we not only enhance our own story, we can help others to do the same. Actions are what lead to positive results. I remember hearing about the concept of being someone's miracle via a video on YouTube. I loved this idea. The viral video had thousands of hits. When I wondered how you attract this, I realized that it all comes down to the message in the story you are telling and the actions that motivated the outcome.

When I think about the power of story, I think about those who have rekindled, sparked and lit something inside of me through the stories they tell in film, television and novels. My publisher, Michael Wiese Productions, recently asked me to contribute to a complimentary book they were putting together as a way to bring the vision of their authors to their target audience. They asked each participating author to write ten reasons why it's a great time to be a filmmaker. The first thing that came to mind when I thought about this was the ability to touch peoples' spirits. I recognize when story touches my spirit, a part of me comes alive and feels like anything is possible. The e-book, now available online, brings together a variety of perspectives on the beauty of storytelling and why now is a great time to be a filmmaker. I believe that the way we connect and attach is through the stories we tell. I give gratitude to all the storytellers who have ignited, sparked or rekindled our spirits through the actions they've taken to pass their stories forward.