Storytelling at Work
August 07, 2019
What People Are Saying About the Impact of Wisdom Circles


Wisdom Circles are enjoyable, lightly-facilitated, gatherings of 6-20 people sharing meaningful, personal stories with each other -- stories that convey insight, humanity, lessons learned, and memorable moments of truth. What follows are a sampling of testimonials from people who have participated in Wisdom Circles in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Melbourne, Australia, and Woodstock, NY.

"Wisdom Circles are a microcosm of how I hope society, at large, might one day function -- truly seeing those around us, valuing them, and recognizing we are on a journey together in our shared humanity." -- Karen Kinney

"I always leave a Wisdom Circle full of new perspective, insight, and feeling -- a deeper connection to my fellow storytellers and story listeners, but most importantly, a refreshed relationship to my own life path and deeper connection to my values, voice and truth." -- Akka B.

"At the closing of the Wisdom circle, I felt I had been given the opportunity to glance at the human soul." -- Carole Clement

"There is no doubt in my mind that Wisdom Circles are a service of enormous value to the community. There is indeed great wisdom in exploring our own stories; in speaking them, sharing them, and allowing them to be witnessed." -- Carlos Chancellor

"The experience gave me a new insight that stunned me, or really, it was an old insight that I had forgotten about and was deeply happy to have back." -- Susan Page

"I had no idea that someone else's experience told in a story could affect me so deeply and would have an impact on my future thoughts." -- Robyn Johnson

Stories not alone3.jpg

"I found that it was not only an enriching experience, but also something I've begun to implement in my day-to-day life." -- Jon Jeffers

"The Wisdom Circle was not only stimulating, but conjured up stories of my own that I hadn't remembered until my memory was stirred by the others in the circle. A great evening of gratitude and mutual appreciation -- a place to be real." -- Sher Davidson

"The whole experience renewed my interest in listening to, writing, and telling stories." -- Jean Paul Peretz

"How freeing the Wisdom Circle was for me! I could allow myself to find the tale that wanted telling and feel safe to tell it. Afterwards I felt a sense of relief and freedom. I felt seen and heard without judgment." -- Ellen Goldberg

"Sharing our stories with one another is a beautiful way that humans support, teach, and enrich one another." -- Diana Kuper

"I found it immensely moving to listen to people's core narratives. It deepened my appreciation of who they are and what their inner life looks like." -- Ruth Garbus

"Two hours into the Wisdom Circle I felt like I had six new friends. It's an inspiring environment that naturally evokes the sharing of stories." -- Sharon Jeffers

"Wisdom Circles are SO MUCH FUN. Under the facilitator's alchemical guidance, each and every storytelling gathering is a safe, encouraging, inspiring, profound, and creative opportunity to more deeply connect with myself and others." -- Lynda Carre

"A wonderful evening of storytelling and enlightenment. Sharing insights and bringing people together made it a memorable evening." -- Jean Buchalter

"The Wisdom Storytelling Circle is a simple, alive form that brought forth my deep narratives." -- Barbara Bash

"Participating in a Wisdom Circle is uplifting and empowering -- bringing forth empathy, trust, intimacy, sharing, learning, real listening, community building, and digging into one's own life. It is so enriching to mind and soul." -- Eldad Benary

"In our very busy lives, filled with all of the calamitous news, Wisdom Circles are a serene way to escape, for a few hours, back to oneself." -- Jan Buchalter

"Participating in a Wisdom Circle was a very freeing experience. It created a bond between participants that opened the door to understanding others by seeing things through their eyes." -- Dr. Alan Pizer

"I heard amazing and inspiring stories from each person at the Wisdom Circle and felt spiritually and emotionally enriched afterward." -- Corinne Mol

"The Wisdom Circle is the place to be. If you're looking for great energy, intelligent, creative people, lots of laughter and loving togetherness, this is the place for you. Don't miss it. It is life changing." -- Nathan Brenowitz

"Wisdom circles are transformative. This is what my life has been sorely lacking for a very long time. Through the process of storytelling, we each delve into aspects of our lives that are not generally discussed or deeply considered. The questions and discussions that follow each story inspire the storyteller and other group members to tap into their own wisdom, with surprisingly wonderful results." - Alan Powitz

"Upon meeting the other Wisdom Circle participants, I felt that I was reconnecting with people I had met before. Sharing and hearing our stories brought tears to my eyes and laughter from my heart." - Fred Szczesiul

"My first Wisdom Circle was a very personal, energetic, intimate experience. I enjoyed meaningful stories in a small group and received validation that we're all connected and can see the me in all of us. And I was 5,000 miles away in the middle of the Pacific Ocean! Instant connection without visual distraction on a cellular level." - Casey Holt

"There is something truly powerful about sitting in a circle together and listening deeply to each others personal experiences. It creates a visceral experience of true belonging." -- Howard Moody

"It was a privilege and pleasure to be included in the Wisdom Circle for the Whittlesea Interfaith Network. The stories shared triggered deep reflection, awakening similar memories of like events that led to a connection of our shared humanity across so many religions and cultural linguistic divides. An uplifting experience it was, leaving all of us with life lessons in just two short hours. God Bless!" -- Nathan Elijah

"The Interfaith Wisdom Circle was transformative. Although we were from different faiths, I found it easy to open up and tell a personal story to the group, some of whom I had not met before. Through the sharing of stories we formed strong connections of trust and mutual understanding. The experience of the Wisdom Circle has demonstrated to me the power of sharing stories and the wisdom that is latent within each of us and which can be unlocked in this supportive environment."-- Margaret Hartley

"The Wisdom Circles at our school have allowed us to pause, reflect and connect with our colleagues and fellow human beings. Hearing each other's stories allows us to re-surface profound events and experiences that have been buried deep inside our hearts. Like it is said, the words of the tongue reach the ears, but the words of the heart reach the heart." - Fazeel Arain

"I have found each Wisdom Circle I attended to be a safe space where I could share, open up, laugh, cry and sometimes just listen." - Najma Anis-Reusch

"There is a certain enchanted mood in the room as we join the Wisdom Circle. Some come to listen, some come to share their own stories, and some are just curious. Whatever the intentions, we all leave feeling energised and looking forward to the next opportunity to connect through the powerful messages we learn from each other." - Rahat Arain

"If you want to make a genuine and sincere connection with colleagues or just sit quietly and immerse yourself in profound story telling, the Wisdom Circle is for you! It's not therapy, but it's certainly therapeutic." - Sitki Esenyel


You have wisdom to share and it is hiding in your stories
Wisdom Circle facilitator training
Storytelling for the Revolution
Storytelling at Work

Illustration: gapingvoid

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at August 7, 2019 11:54 AM

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Storytelling at Work is a blog about the power of personal storytelling – why it matters and what you can do to more effectively communicate your stories – on or off the job. Inspired by the book of the same name, the blog features "moment of truth" stories by the author, Mitch Ditkoff, plus inspired rants, quotes, and guest submissions by readers.

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Storytelling for the Revolution
Storytelling for the Revolution is Mitch Ditkoff's newly published book about the power of personal storytelling to elevate the conversation on planet Earth. Provocative. Evocative. And fun. YOU have stories to tell. This book will help you tell them.
Storytelling at Work
"The world is not made of atoms," wrote the poet, Muriel Rukeyser. "It's made of stories." Learn how to discover, honor, and unpack the stories of yours that show up "on the job" in Mitch Ditkoff's award-winning 2015 book, Storytelling at Work.
Do you want to know more about the book before buying it? Click here for Mitch's response to frequently asked questions about Storytelling at Work – the perfect book for people who think they have no time to read.
The Workshop
Storytelling is an "unconscious competency" – an ability we all have that all too often remains inaccessible to us. Enter the Storytelling at Work workshop – a simple way to activate this powerful, innate skill.
Wisdom Circles
Want to establish a culture of storytelling in your organization or community? Looking for a simple way to help people to share their meaningful, memorable stories with each other? Here's how.
Podcasts & Videos
Click here to view and listen to a series of interviews with the author of this blog. Go beyond the written word. Listen. Feel. Elevate the conversation. Understand what the big deal is about personal storytelling.
Blogs 'R Us
If you like this blog, you might also like Mitch's other two blogs: The Heart of Innovation and The Heart of the Matter. Mitch is also a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.
Idea Champions
When Mitch isn't writing, he's captaining the good ship Idea Champions, a leading edge innovation consulting and training company based in Woodstock, NY. What their clients say.