How Defining Your Personal Story Can Lead to Relationship Success

Over the course of the past few months, I’ve been on a personal journey to gain a deeper understanding of my clients. In order to do that, I first had to understand my own personal story and how it relates to those I work with. After all, before we can understand others, we first have to understand ourselves.

So, with that purpose in mind, I traveled to Burbank, California for a workshop at the Gary Marshall Theatre. The workshop focused on learning how to speak from the stage in order to tell your own personal story. It wasn’t until I started speaking onstage that I truly realized just how closely my own story mirrors the stories of my clients. This realization has led me to explore a new area of my relationship coaching program that I want to share with all of you.

What Is Your Defining Moment?


We often have something that has happened to us in our lives that impacts us in ways we don’t even realize. Each of us has a defining moment that has shaped who we are and how we react to and deal with situations. In order to unlock what is holding us back in life – or in a relationship – we must dig deeper.

During this workshop in Burbank, they asked me to get up on the stage and tell the story of the defining moment of my life. I began telling my own personal story, and it wasn’t until those leading the workshop began asking me questions and pushing me to dig deeper that I had my aha! moment and realized what the larger things were in my life that had been stopping me in my tracks and preventing me from finding what I was truly looking for.

In telling my story I actually told two different stories – first, the story of the defining moment of my childhood and then, the story of meeting my husband, Ben. Each story helped me unlock and uncover different emotions, and it wasn’t until I told both that I realized the root of both defining moments in my life was the same underlying emotion – embarrassment. Once I realized what the emotion was, I truly understood how it had been holding me back.

I took away two main things from this experience:

  • It is not until you step back from your own experiences and feelings and the “baggage” that is blocking you and holding you back that you will see who someone else truly is. When we have our own things going on, that clouds our judgment and how we see others. Until we are able to unlock these things and take a step back we aren’t ready or able to meet the “right” one.
    We hold ourselves back from relationships because we don’t want to be seen. We are embarrassed by our own challenges and the scars that we carry from our defining moments, and more than that, we’re scared. We’re afraid to let someone else see these things and are terrified of what will happen when they do. Because we don’t want to share these stories, we hold ourselves back from relationships.


  • We often know what is holding us back, but we only know it at the surface level. I knew that I felt embarrassed while telling my story onstage, but I didn’t realize that embarrassment ran much deeper. We understand these things about ourselves and can see what the issues may be, but we don’t know and understand them at a deep level where we are able to do something about them. That’s where I come in! Together, we can figure out your personal story and uncover the underlying, deeper emotions at play.


Once you are able to define and share your story, you’ll discover things you didn’t even realize about yourself. And those realizations will help you along your journey to finding a healthy relationship. If you think you could benefit from figuring out your own personal story, please contact me to set up a relationship coaching consultation call.

In an effort to dig deeper with my clients and move forward with this new aspect of my relationship coaching program, over the next few months my blogs and newsletters will center around personal stories. Keep an eye out for next month’s blog where I’ll share my own personal stories I shared onstage in Burbank. My hope is that by learning about my story and better understanding the realizations I came to and how they’ve helped me, you’ll see how uncovering your story will help you in your own life.


A Relationship Coach in Southern California,
Sue De Santo works with men and women who are struggling to find that
long-lasting, fulfilling relationship.

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