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  • Writer's pictureRain Bennett

The Storytelling Lab - Ep16: Personal Narratives with Elaine Bloom

Updated: Apr 27, 2020

Our guest this week is Elaine Bloom, a public speaker, career counselor, and business owner. Rain and Elaine discuss personal and societal narratives, being better listeners, learning to be honest with ourselves and others, and knowing when it’s time to say “no” or walk away. Listen in for a truly motivational episode!



In August 2017, I was sitting at dinner with a group of speakers for the AFPT (Academy for Personal Training) Convention just outside of Oslo, Norway.

The CEO of AFPT, Espen, had been an investor in my film Raise Up, and invited me to show the film to a room full of hundreds of personal trainers on the closing night of the conference.

It was my first time speaking at an event of that size and I was pretty nervous. At the table surrounding me was a handful of global thought leaders in the fitness industry. I played it cool, put on the charm, and pretended like I was supposed to be there.

It helped that they all were incredibly nice and welcoming.

Elaine at the 2017 AFPT Convention

Every person that I talked to said I had to meet Elaine Bloom.

When they learned that my pre-film speech was going to be about flipping the script, using my flaws to my advantage, and finding my personal story, they knew Elaine and I would sync up quickly.

She burst through the door like a light with an infectious energy. She was funny and charming, but most of all, she was smart. We did sync up immediately.

When she spoke on stage I was even more impressed.

Elaine captivated the audience and had complete control of them for 60 minutes. She’d even stop talking and sit comfortably in the silence, daring someone in the audience to speak up when they were too shy to answer her questions.

She talked about the science of storytelling and neural coupling -- all these concepts that I would spent the next two years researching. The main thing that resonated with me was that she was also talking about the stories we tell ourselves and how we can create those narratives.

So, I had her on the show to talk about just that!

Elaine is a motivational speaker, career counselor & business owner living in Norway. We discussed personal and societal narratives, being better listeners, learning to be honest with ourselves and others, and knowing when it’s time to say “no” or walk away.

Right now Elaine is:

  • Working on an online, interactive career counseling platform called CareerChannel (or KarriereKanalen in Norwegian)

  • Getting ready to speak at a Female Future Days Conference at the BI Norwegian Business School

  • Preparing to be a keynote speaker at a Career Conference, where she will speak on the Many Faces of Career Counseling

  • She also has a podcast called Hverdagspodden (Everyday Podium in English). Elaine and Co-Host, Camilla, talk about everyday feelings and emotions that can be scary to share.

As a career counselor, Elaine has learned that sharing stories and personal experiences is the best way to connect with others.

If you are seeking your purpose or mission, or interested in learning better ways to share your purpose with others to gain their support, then this episode is full of motivation and information for you!

Some highlights of our conversation:

  • Becoming a parent

  • Narratives we create around special days

  • The difference between changes and transitions

  • Wanting people to listen without giving any advice

  • What to do when you’re in a position where you can help people. What to tell people that are hurting.

  • Listening with empathy (not just to reply or to get your point across)

  • Our energy introduces us before we even speak

  • Daring to be blunt

  • The Norwegian welfare system

  • Wanting to own a business so that no one has the ability to fire you

  • Local & societal narratives - no one expects you to not marry the doctor, quit your job, and travel around the world, but sometimes you have to be bold, listen to yourself, and take those leaps

  • In life, why do we end up where we do?

  • Finding your “mission:” how to bring the different parts of yourself together & create a place to thrive where they intersect

  • Connecting through narratives of loss & pain

  • Lies people tell themselves: “I’m not good enough,” “I’m not worthy,” “I’m too old,” I’m too young”…

  • To tell good stories we have to be 100% honest with ourselves -- so what are the action steps?

  1. Be aware

  2. Question yourself but don’t be judgemental

  3. Be willing to make the difficult choices

  4. Stop telling everyone about your pain

  5. Write down how you want your future to look

  • How young adults often look for instant gratification and have an unwillingness to question themselves

  • Not asking difficult questions to avoid the difficult answers

  • Learning how to tell people “no”

  • Telling others the truth as a form of respect

  • How to keep clients accountable?: Create a work alliance, Be clear on your goals & tasks, & Be empathetic

  • Why people set goals that are out of their control

  • Working with what you have instead of trying to become something/someone else

  • Being wholehearted in everything you do

And, as Elaine likes to say...

No tool is better than the hand that holds it

As always, I hope you enjoy the episode!

Peace and Love,



Follow Elaine on Instagram @elaine_bloom

Find her on Facebook as Elaine Bloom

Or check out her website at

For more storytelling tips and tricks,

Follow us on Instagram @sixsecondstories

Visit our website

Hosted by Rain Bennett (@rainbennett | Twitter) (


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