Free «How to Tell a Good Story with your Life» Essay Sample

Donald Miller is a celebrated author who is known for writing the book “A Million Miles in Thousand Years”. The book started gaining popularity within the masses and it made Mr. Miller New York best-selling author. The book focuses on the way one can change his or her life into a blockbuster movie, using a basic principle which he explains throughout the book. The principle is popular with most storytellers; whatever is used to create a compelling story can also be applied to one’s life. This principle does wonders in the lives of people who apply it (Miller 10).

The book will be adapted for a movie which will be released on April 13th; the author is applying his own principle to his life. In the book, the author concludes that in order to experience an enjoyable story a person’s life has to mirror the concepts of a great story.

The first element revolves on the notion that any story requires a character (Storyline). The plot revolves around the thoughts and actions of the character, this also applies to human life; everyone is the main character of their story (48). The character in your story is under the control of the storyteller; each action a person takes reflects on your story. One has to understand that the character and the storyteller are the same person. If the story is about something besides a person or any other characters, the role should not be denied; doing so makes the story uninteresting. Concluding the author tells us that responsibility for one’s actions is the beginning of living an exceptional life.

The desires of the main character are not to be forgotten; if he does not have the desire to own or control something the story will become clumsy and mundane. The purpose for his actions, his human interactions and benefit from this gives us an idea about the character’s desires and needs. Without this, story would lack purpose and drive; this is true in the case of life too. The people living at the heights of success can attribute this to their lofty ambitions and the determination to achieve the same. The wants are not satisfactory for the whole story, how the character struggles to achieve them becomes the story. What matter to the character is self-sacrifice and a strong will for achieving a charitable cause in life and not the glory that might come along with it. Accomplishment of this story connects both the world and us, making us enjoy our lives (109).

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Every character must frequently encounter conflict in all aspects of life; conflict itself and the ways of resolving them make the storyline spicier (Storyline). Although, we avoid any form of conflict in society, conflicts are seen as a necessity and add more meaning to the desires of the character. The personality of the character is changed or sharpened as a result of conflict management. A storyline with no conflict is boring, it becomes insipid, and the character will slowly lose meaning to the reader. In the path of attaining the ambitions, conflict makes us more determined. Conflict should not be avoided, it should rather be welcomed and handled as it comes (58).

Each story has a climax which is a defining moment in the storyline. It affects the characters and meaning of the plot; the author views it as a resolving point in the story (Storyline). The conflict in a scene is resolved by a series of actions and the characters now understand their roles in the bigger picture. Real life does not turn out this way; the plot is rapidly evolving due to change in places, together with the people in the lives among other factors.

The definition of purpose for the character is the element that appeals to me. The storyline is based on the motive the character has for living and the rewards he gets for his actions. In the case that the character desires to be remembered in human history, his actions must be equal to the benefits. The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward is - a business maxim that applies to the lives. If the drive, of a person is greater than that of his equals he will reap the greatest rewards available (78). We are all in a race, thus the phrase “the human race”, the race is for making the lives and those of our dependents comfortable.

The life of America’s 44th president is the first African American to head the United States government. He came from very humble beginnings and he has fought his way to the hearts of every American in order to hold the office. He is a model human being and is living a life to the fullest and enjoying all the perks that come along. Raised by a single mother, one would have thought that he would grow into a bitter person. He was abandoned by his father, Barrack Obama Senior a Kenyan, at an early age. These challenges did not deter him from being a community organizer, a state senator followed by being a senator and ultimately becoming the most powerful man in the world. He noticed that he had good oratory skills from a young age and he sought to improve them by being a lawyer. After being elected as a state senator he noticed that the public inclined towards him, so he began strategizing his way into the Oval office. Capturing the Illinois senate was the first step in the plan and the rest is history. Obama found his purpose in life and he devoted his life to achieving it. If his ambitions were low he would be the average American man with a comfortable life but with no influence. His self sacrifice from the need of being normal is what made him the man he is today. His presidency has given hope to all those aspiring to hold any public office; people started to believe that it is possible despite your ethnic background. He is also famous for coining the phrase ”Yes we can” which is now chanted all across the globe for motivational purposes.

In goal setting the student is the ultimate example because he is supposed to pass his examinations in order to meet all the requirements of the curriculum. Being a student can be challenging; time is a limited resource and one has to manage it effectively. The best time managers are those that lead their individual subjects or classes. Time management is an issue that echoes in everyone’s lives, if managed well, the accumulating wealth will be an easier feat. The pressures that I as a student face are numerous; from friends to parents, to teachers and the list is endless. The feeling of being overwhelmed is not a new experience and if I am not able to manage the time I have, then failure is the only option I get. Definition of goals is of prime importance in one’s life and studies in order to live a happy and successful life.

To live extraordinary lives and leave legacies behind, one’s goals should be clearly defined. Opposition will come from all angles and the ability to withstand the storm and hope for a better future separates the chaff from the wheat in society. The determined ones do not lose track of their ambitions and trudge on towards their goals. If the characters, in this case us, have a clear mental picture of what we want to achieve, and we should not stop despite the opposition. (124)


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