Storytelling Tips from Stephen Hawking’s Co-Author

Leonard Mlodinow co-authoring books with Stephen Hawking

People who reach the top in nearly every field have different skills, of course, but they share one thing in common: they’ve learned to express their ideas to inspire others to action.

Dr. Leonard Mlodinow is one such expert. He’s co-written two books with his mentor, Stephen Hawking. He also writes scripts for television shows like Star Trek: The Next Generation.

In short, Mlodinow knows science and storytelling.

I interviewed Mldoninow recently about his new book, Emotional. You can watch our entire conversation on my YouTube channel, CarmineGalloTV.

Carmine Gallo and theoretical physicist, Leonard Mlodinow

Mlodinow credits Hawking for helping him understand that teaching complex ideas to non-experts requires a different set of language tools. Most of us don’t understand formulas outside of our field (which is why Hawking insisted on just one formula in his mega-bestselling book, A Short History of Time). Hawking also told Mlodinow that people resonate with stories.

Mlodinow fills his book with stories, both person and historical.

Personal Stories. Mlodinow uses his parents, both of whom are Holocaust survivors, to explain how the brain interprets traumatic events and experiences.

Historical Stories. Mlodinow writes about the Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton and how he survived the famous wreck of his ship, Endurance. The story of Shackleton’s 800-mile journey in a lifeboat opens a chapter on happiness and how people can stay positive despite facing daunting prospects.

“People love stories and it pulls people along,” says Mlodinow.

Find stories to make your content relatable. If people relate to you, they’ll be more likely to follow you and take action on your ideas.

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