By David Peel
The most powerful way to persuade and inform is story. Your childhood is made up of stories: “the class bully,” “that crazy thing we did,” or “prom night.” We all have them. In fact, story is how we tend to think. Stories have been implanted in you in books, conversations, movies, videos, and plays. Stories unite ideas with emotion or conviction. All great storytellers from the ancient Greeks through Shakespeare and today show fundamental conflict between a human’s expectation and the cruel realities they must overcome.
But most of us, both personally and professionally, keep our struggles under wraps.
But as a storyteller, you want to show the problems and struggles up front. People often will then root for you or your client to overcome them.
EXAMPLE: The is a case where the expert defense lawyers will point out accurately that my client did not miss very much work at all as a result of the crash their driver caused. I lean into that. I do not minimize that— I talk about it!
%&%#$, mother of @#%%&* is a superwoman. She is in graduate school to become a Nurse Practitioner. She also works not one, but two jobs, usually 12-hour shifts! She was driving with her whole little family at interstate speeds, was hit by an out of control car that had left the opposing lanes, crashed into a concrete barrier and was flung into the front of the family SUV.
The impact rolled the SUV. Then the driver of an 18-wheeler that had seen the whole scene unfold in front of them from their panoramic height, had to swerve violently to the right and flipped over off the road to avoid killing all involved. Investigation reveals that the Defendant was not paying attention to what was in front of her and swerved to avoid stopped traffic. She was understandably distraught at almost losing all in the world that matters to her and continues to try and keep her anxiety at bay but is limited in her medication options due to her job responsibilities. She was bruised all over, especially across her abdomen. The bruising was serious enough that that IV contrast was used in testing. She had neck and back pain. She still suffers migraines. Her pain made it hard to even lift her little girl for months. She has soldiered through the pain to miss work as little as possible, to help achieve her dreams and that of her family. She is a Home Health Nurse and a Nurse at the Hospital. She was unable to work as a Home Health nurse for three days at various shift pay ($21/hour x 12) or ($25/hour x12) for total of $852. She also missed a 12-hour shift at the Hospital.
You are not thinking she is just fine just because she missed only a few shifts. You see it in light of her story. Take on the negative and make it a positive. The great irony is that which makes life worth living does not come from the comfortable part of life.
Struggles force us all to live, suffer and love much more deeply. And, we follow people in whom we believe. Juries often render verdicts that way.
Peel seeks justice for those injured in tractor trailer and car accidents, medical malpractice, and disability. He often addresses churches, clubs and groups without charge. Peel may be reached through PeelLawFirm.com wherein other articles may be accessed.