Strategic Sharing: How to Make Smart Choices when Sharing Your Story

Your experiences — whether good or bad — are treasured because they are yours. In some cases, you earned your stories by overcoming pain and making it through difficult circumstances. This is why you need to protect them.

Strategic SharingStrategic sharing means determining in advance what information about yourself you feel comfortable sharing publicly by considering what is appropriate to talk about and what you would like others to learn from your experiences. Carefully choosing what to share is very important, especially when sharing online.

The Youth Leadership Toolkit: Strategic Sharing (PDF, 7 pages) is designed to help you do just that. You will learn about:

  • risks involved in telling your story
  • tips to help you think about how sharing your story may affect others in your life
  • “red light,” “yellow light,” and “green light” statements that help you determine how much to share
  • tips for getting out of uncomfortable situations in conversations while saving face
  • experiences other youth have had when sharing their stories

The toolkit was designed by youth in foster care with other foster youth and foster care alumni in mind. However, it addresses important topics that everyone — even youth with no experience in foster care — should keep in mind when sharing their stories. We think you’ll find it useful. Check it out and tell us what you think.

“Strategic sharing means you need to be clear about what you will say. Your first goal is to protect yourself, other people who might be involved in your story, your audience, and your personal story. You’ll want a plan. You’ll want control about what parts of your story you want to let out and what to hold back.”
Youth Leadership Toolkit: Strategic Sharing