HANDling Your Story: Tips For Telling Your Story

January 4, 2024

by Mary MorlinoMary Morlino
RARE Patient & Patient Advocate

I created this HANDling Your Story tip sheet because I found that many times when you’re telling your story, it’s easy to get distracted and miss the point of what you’re trying to accomplish. So something you always have with you is your hands. So if you use your hands to help guide you, I find it very helpful because even if you get nervous or you get distracted, you can always look at your hand so you can stay on task and stay with your mission: this is who I am and this is my point.

You have this almost secret tool at hand (pun intended!), so you can use it in any situation. If you practice with that in mind, if you get distracted or something changes in the interaction, you can get back on point by using the hand tool.

Another aspect is that a lot of the times when you tell your story, you want to start at the beginning. As important as the beginning of your story is, it may not be necessary to tell at that moment.

You need to identify:

  • What are the key parts?
  • How can I have my story be really effective and efficient and speak to the person who is listening?
  • Consider what information they need from what your story – what can they relate to and possibly act on?

It helps too to really shift that focus and think about the person who’s receiving your information. Are all the details necessary? Identifying what their needs are and how you can connect to that with your story is really important.


Who are you? A patient, caregiver, fundraiser?

Pointer Finger

What is your point, your objective? What do you want?

3-Finger “W”

Where are we in the rare disease space?


What is the impact? What is the purpose of sharing your story?

Open Hand

How can they help? This is your ASK and it’s achievable.

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