Stories Big and Small: The Role of Story as a Coaching Tool

with Brian Gorman

The human mind is a story processor, and we are all good storytellers. From early childhood, we have been telling ourselves stories that became truths that shape how we live every day. As Lori Gotlieb said in her TED Talk on story "The way we narrate our lives shapes what they become. If we can change our stories, then we can change our lives." In this workshop, participants will learn how to change their own stories, big and small, as well as how to guide their clients in the use of story to reshape their lives.

The workshop will begin with an introduction to the neuroscience of story, and the ways in which we can use neuroplasticity to change the stories that shape our lives.

Participants will then be introduced to a process I call "Gremlins to Gurus." The process begins by identifying a story (limiting belief) that they want to change. They also identify the new story they want to replace the gremlin with. The process involves logging the trigger each time the gremlin appears. Through the process of logging and reviewing the triggers, the individual becomes increasingly conscious of being triggered. At that point, they can choose to respond with the guru rather than the gremlin. Over time, the guru becomes the unconscious response to the triggers. Participants will practice coaching this process in dyads.

Creating a story from the future is the first step in transformational change. The story from the future is a head, heart, gut story that activates our emotions. In it, the client also identifies some of the key obstacles they will need to overcome. By intentionally embodying the story, new neural networks are developed that help the client move forward and live into their story. In dyads, participants will begin the process of developing their own stories from the future.

Learning Objectives

  • Participants will learn the neuroscience of story
  • Participants will learn how the cephalic, cardiac, and enteric brains can be engaged to help facilitate new stories and transformational change
  • Participants will practice evoking awareness in the limiting stories that shape their clients' lives, and how to coach their clients in the creation of more positive stories
  •  Participants will practice coaching to help shape stories from the future



brian gormanThrough TransformingLives.Coach, Brian serves clients who are facing major personal and professional transitions. He is also Vice President for Program Development and an executive coach with Quantuvos, a virtual professional development community with coaching at its core. He is an ICF certified professional coach, and a member of ICF-New York City and the Gay Coaches Alliance. In December 2020, he presented at TEDx Hartford on his journey through change beginning as a freshman at Syracuse University, continuing through his coming out, taking in and adopting a homeless gay teen, and much more. Brian’s business is a Certified LGBT Business Enterprise.


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Session Details

Session Start Time January 21st, 2023 10:00 am EDT
Session End Time January 21st, 2023 11:15 am EDT