Crafting Your Personal Narrative

Explore a meaningful way to answer the question “How did you get to where you are now?” and discover the narrative that will help you get out of your own way. You have a story worth telling.

Crafting Your Personal Narrative is Tell Me A Story's signature workshop. It's an introduction to the TMAS method of storytelling, including The Five Key Elements of Personal Narrative. Through a unique experiential learning process you will learn how to fuse together your values, your life experience, and your superpowers into a polished Origin Story. You will leave with story in hand, plus a personalized action plan for bringing it into the world — whether as part of a keynote, a video on your website, or a conversation starter with clients and colleagues.

How It Works

The workshop consists of one In-Person Intensive with your cohort, two 90-minute Story Labs over Zoom video conference with your cohort, and a Story Strategy Session with Hillary. You have the option to add on three additional 1-on-1 Coaching sessions to further refine your Origin Story and continue diving deeper into your personal narrative work.

+ Workshop Overview

CYPN will help you:

  • Make connections between your past experiences and your future goals.
  • Examine the parts of your story that block you from your authenticity.
  • Remove self-doubt when it comes to how your voice and story are going to be received.
  • Craft a compelling narrative that will build deeper relationships between you and your audience.
  • Find a story that is relevant to your offer as an entrepreneur and small business owner.
  • Gain confidence in both the content and delivery of your story.
  • Hone in on your story structure for brevity and clarity.
  • Create your own preparation and practice style for all of your public speaking needs.
  • Take ownership of your stories to reframe the narrative that will serve you and those listening to you.
  • Discover your unique speaking style and natural sense of humor.
  • Turn a story inside of you into an opportunity for personal growth and genuine connection.

You will learn:

  • How to brainstorm a narrative that will serve you in the present moment
  • The Five Key Elements of Personal Narrative
  • Techniques for building story structure
  • How to craft an Origin Story
  • A preparation technique that can be replicated outside of the workshop setting
  • A fail-proof process for practicing and delivering your story
  • How to tailor your Origin Story for your intended audience
  • How to weave a message or call-to-action into your story in a seamless and genuine way.
  • How to deliver and receive constructive and positive feedback
  • How to connect your Origin Story to your personal and professional goals.

How is CYPN different from other workshops?

CYPN is often described as a transformative experience for our participants as they begin to identify parts of themselves (like their unique stories) that they’ve never fully explored. The workshop is rooted in experiential learning and works best when you trust the process and trust your gut. There are no wrong answers. The small group setting allows for collaboration, experimentation and personalized feedback from your peers and from Tell Me A Story.

The workshop is designed in three parts -- The In-Person Intensive, The Story Labs, and The Story Strategy Session -- to give you the space to dig deep, grow, and close out the experience with tools, techniques, and a plan for putting yourself out there.

How much time do I need to commit?

All CYPN participants must be available on all of the dates listed for each session. It's imperative that you are there for the entire In-Person Intensive and both Story Labs. Your Story Strategy Session can be scheduled in your own time, so long as it is completed in the four weeks following the final Story Lab session. In addition to your workshop time, you will need to reserve at least two hours of homework time between each section of the workshop.

+ Who Should Take This Workshop

This workshop is right for you if:

  • You are an entrepreneur or small business owners in need of a new "About" — whether this is a video on your website or an in-person introduction to you and your work.
  • You want people to feel as comfortable in person as they do via your online presence.
  • You are start-up leader about to embark on a huge creative endeavor and want to come up with a way of pitching your work by pitching yourself.
  • You've had a unique career path and want to learn how to shape your journey (and whatever comes next) into a story that make sense and is compelling to others.
  • You are in a leadership position and need to increase confidence in real world scenarios, e.g., leading a meeting at your day job or even just participating in one.
  • You are going to be looking for a new job soon and would like to be able to tell your story in an engaging and concise way as you start networking and interviewing.
  • You have an upcoming talk (e.g. a keynote, a panel, a podcast interview) and you want to hone in on your over-arching narrative.

What if I don't live near Philadelphia?

If you are coming from outside of Philadelphia, the only in-person portion of the workshop is the In-Person Intensive. The Story Labs and the Story Strategy Session take place via Zoom video conference. We try to hold the Small Group Intensive at the end of the week, in case you want to make a weekend of it and stay over night in Philadelphia. Looking for travel tips and places to stay? Send us an email and we can give you some recommendations.

+ What It Costs

Option 1: $1,000 (or three installments of $334)


  • The full Crafting Your Personal Narrative experience (9 hours of time with your cohort, 50 minutes of one-on-one time throughout the workshop)

  • All workshop supplies including The Speak Up kit and all printed worksheets

  • Boxed lunch, snacks and drinks for the Small Group Intensive

  • Full access to Tell Me A Story for questions and resources throughout your workshop journey.

Option 2: $2,350 (or three installments of $784)


  • All of the above

  • Three 1-on-1 Coaching sessions (60 min each) with TMAS Founder, Hillary Rea.

Note: If you have an upcoming high level speaking engagement, a time sensitive deadline for re-positioning your business, or an anticipated big life change, we highly recommend adding the three 1-on-1 Coaching sessions on to your workshop experience.


What is your refund policy?

Tell Me A Story does not offer refunds or exchanges for any of our services. If you complete this workshop and are not satisfied with the outcomes, we can work with you to resolve this issue. However we do not anticipate this happening, as we have a 100% satisfaction rate with all of our past clients.

How does the payment plan work?

If you want to pay for this workshop with our payment plan. Make sure to click on the link below the main registration button. Your first installment is due upon registering and then the payment plan runs every three weeks for two more cycles. The plan will terminate once you have paid all three installments.

Do you offer scholarships?

Tell Me A Story offers scholarships to early stage entrepreneurs and non-profit leaders who demonstrate financial need. We offer one slot for each session of Crafting Your Personal Narrative. We also offer one scholarship slot per quarter for a three month (six session) engagement of 1-on-1 Coaching. A TMAS Scholarship reduces your total investment by 50%.

We review our scholarship applications on a rolling basis. We are looking to learn more about you, where you are in your career, and what your goals are for personal and professional growth. We do not want to pry into the nitty gritty of your financial situation, but we appreciate your candid responses to all of the questions. If you are interested in applying please email us.

Where does CYPN take place?

This workshop takes place both in-person (in Philadelphia) and online. The In-Person Intensive is the full day portion of your workshop experience and that takes place at several venues throughout the City of Philadelphia. Please refer to the main workshop page for the specific venue location. When registered for the workshop, you will receive an email with location and building access information prior to the start of the session. The Story Labs take place over Zoom video conference. You can join in from anywhere so long as you have strong Wi-Fi, a quiet place to work, and headphone. Your Story Strategy Session with Hillary is one-on-one and can happen either in-person at TMAS' Center City office or via Zoom video conference.

Note: If you are coming from outside of Philadelphia, the only in-person portion of the workshop is the Small Group Intensive. We try to hold them at the end of the week in case you want to make a weekend of it and stay over night in Philadelphia.

I have dietary restrictions. Will I be able to eat the lunch during the Small Group Intensive?

Yes. When you register for the workshop, you can indicate your dietary rescrictions and allergies.

Where else can I learn more about CYPN?

You can watch video testimonials from past workshop participants here. If you still have any lingering questions you can always schedule a call with Hillary to figure out if this workshop is right for you.


In-Person Intensive:

Friday, November 8th, 2019 from 10AM TO 4PM

Location: Spaces, 100 S. Juniper Street, Floor 3, Philadelphia, PA 19107

Story Labs:

Thursday, November 14th, 2019 & Thursday, November 21st, 2019 From 5:30PM TO 7:00PM

Location: Online via Zoom video conference

Story Strategy Session:

TO BE COMPLETED IN november or December 2019

Location: Online via Zoom video conference or in-person at our Center City office.


Download The Five Key Elements of Personal Narrative ↓

Enter your email below to receive this printable guide.