What is Therapeutic Storytelling? Stories use metaphor and imagery to change the way we see our lives and the world, offering healing and growth to everyone - teller and listener alike. They connect us to each other and help us find meaning and hope. Therapeutic storytelling can change the way we see our lives and the world. Using metaphor, stories offer healing to everyone. For more information about therapeutic storytelling, visit All Things Healing online today!

Introduction to Therapeutic Storytelling
(Asst Editor: Norma-Jean Strickland) Michael is a storyteller, StoryCoach, and teacher, with interests in therapeutic storytelling, coaching, leadership, personal and community dev...
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Michael Williams, PhD
We are currently seeking a Co-Editor and/or Assistant Editor for this section. For more information please contact Sherri Carter at

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Editor´s Note from Michael Williams: Storyteller Burt Meyer from North Carolina tells the tale of "Jack and Old Man Death", one of many Jack tales that made their way over from Scotland and Ireland to the Appalachians in the U.S. It's a classic story and one that was meant to help us become more accepting of our mortality.


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Mary Louise Chown

Hearing a story is like listening to music, the words falling off the teller’s tongue, onto our ears, and into our heart, setting thoughts and memories in motion. Stories are heard in the deep heart’s core and answer the burning questions that we all have. Who are we? Where did we come from? Who do we love? What have we forgotten that is important to remember?


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: In this article, storyteller and mediator Mary Louise Chown reflects on her therapeutic work with story and children. She states: "Children especially need the experience of listening to stories and discovering connections with their own lives. This can strengthen their spirits for when they meet hard times, such as illness or death, or any kind of sadness or disappointment."


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Gillian Huebner

Perhaps the most devastating - and simultaneously most hopeful - experience that I have had as a humanitarian worker was during the final stage of Angola's civil war. In February 2002, I was in Moxico, where internally displaced populations were arriving in droves, often in critical condition...


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Lisa Bloom

I’d like to tell you a story. It’s about a particular woman, it’s about every person. It’s about me and it’s about you. It is a story about our stories...


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: I met Lisa a few years ago during a storytelling tour in Israel and have since then become a big fan of her work. She's not only a great storyteller but an inspiring story coach helping others find the courage to share their stories. The following story is taken from her newsletter and is typical of the passion Lisa brings to her work.


Therapeutic Storytelling



Editor's Note from Michael Williams: The death of storyteller Syd Lieberman leaves a hole in the storytelling world that will be tough to fill. In this video, award-winning storyteller and teacher Lieberman reminds why he was much loved. Here he demonstrates why story is the most effective way for teachers to share their experiences in order to build support for and understanding of their work. He shows how story touches listeners and readers, and presents a model of how to put together a story that teachers can use in writing their own pieces.


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Edward Tick

Warriors in traditional societies served the need for protection, and all that was done was done in the tribe’s name. They had rituals transferring responsibility for actions during warfare from veterans to the entire culture. Ultimately leaders, not ordinary troops, were held responsible for the results of battle and for the deaths that occurred...


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: A short time ago, the Soldier's Heart organization was one of our featured charities. Its founder, Ed Tick, Ph.D., has worked with war veterans or “warriors” for more than 30 years. His article tells of the importance of encouraging warriors to share their stories to enable healing from the trauma of war and from associated illnesses such as PTSD. Continued from Part 1.



Therapeutic Storytelling

by Ted Kuntz

The people of the Hopi First Nations understood the power of stories. They had a strong oral tradition and used storytelling as the means to transfer wisdom from one generation to the next.

Carefully embedded within each story were the values, skills and knowledge the elders deemed necessary to navigate the challenges of life successfully...


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: This article was first published in Ted Kuntz's newsletter "Peace Begins With Me" (March 2013). We hope you enjoy it and will be inspired to read more about Ted's peace education work and interest in story.


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Edward Tick, PhD

Guilt, shame, slaughter without purpose, alienation from homeland and life itself—this was the legacy that Günter passed on to his son Walt from his World War II combat service in Hitler’s Wehrmacht. Walt, “the only child born in freedom,” was born in the United States shortly after his parents emigrated here from Germany...


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: A short time ago, the Soldier's Heart organization was one of our featured charities. Their founder, Ed Tick, Ph.D., has worked with war veterans or “warriors” for more than 30 years. His article tells of the importance of encouraging warriors to share their stories to enable healing from the trauma of war and from associated illnesses such as PTSD.


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Mark D. Hyde

In a brief encounter with a total stranger, I finally realized an insight that has taken me years to grasp. In a world where we long for everything new, bright, and shiny, I had come to be OK with, embrace, and even appreciated the dents, dings, and damage that life inevitably brought my way...




Therapeutic Storytelling

by Joan Stockbridge

Yesterday I flew back from my nephew’s wedding. It was a beautiful wedding, celebrated in the same little stone church where I’d been married 36 years earlier. And the reception was very festive, with the dance floor crowded all night...


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: As All Souls Day approaches, I am reminded of how many cultures honour their dead with a meal, a visit to the grave, and sharing of memories. No one is ever dead, an ancient tale reminds us, as long as we keep telling stories about the departed. In this poignant article, storyteller, spiritual director and SoulCollage® facilitator Joan Stockbridge recounts the importance of “ceremony” as a way of dealing with death and grief.


Therapeutic Storytelling


Editor's Note from Michael Williams: If you're not familiar with the "Humans of New York" web site, you'll find it an inspired project combining storytelling and photography. The "human" behind the project is Brandon Stanton, a young photographer who decided to go out on the streets and listen and record the stories of ordinary people. This is a heartwarming and inspiring video and a reminder that everyone has a story to share. Watch how people come to life when someone offers to listen to their story. That's healing.


Therapeutic Storytelling

by Juliet Bruce

Whether we are trying to nourish the inherent strengths of a troubled young person, find deeper love in a conflicted relationship, rebuild our life after loss, create common ground between adversaries, or express ourselves in a fresh way, there is no system, structure, or formula more powerful than creative process...



Therapeutic Storytelling

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Moggys Tale: A Story Coaching Journey

by Michael Williams, PhD, Co-Editor of Therapeutic Storytelling

A middle-aged woman—a former librarian—stands before us, takes a deep breath, looks us in the eye and begins. Over the next five minutes she tells a story of a cat. The cat once belonged to her, in another place, in another time. Then the cat died. End of story.

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