Stretch Your Brave Hack Your Story


Stretch Your Brave Hack Your Story


Breaking Through Chronic Disease with Storytelling

Author & Illustrator: Melanie Banayat, CHHC

A key missing component to the typical conventional western medicine doctor visit is your story. You fill out a checklist of symptoms and conditions on a five page health history form and get a short seven minute consult with the doctor who then prescribes a pill for each ill, and you're never asked to tell your story. There are rarely any in-depth inquires about what might have caused the inflammation, symptom, or discomfort in the first place.

     It's a blessing to be able to investigate and set a story free.  As we grow older we tend to hold on to most of our stories and drag them around like a collection of heavy boulders that fester and manifest into disease.

What the heck does "Stretch Your Brave, Hack Your Story" mean? Well, one of the goals of this book, and the companion workbook, The Common Courage Way, is to challenge you to become a 'hacker.' What is a hacker?  In this case, hackers are positive innovators. Hackers are people who challenge and change systems to make them work differently - to make them work better - it's a mindset. Any and every system is open game for being hacked these days - even your health story.

If you have been suffering with chronic diseases of lifestyle for entirely too long, with little to no relief, and no signs of true healing - then you may be stuck in story. Banayat takes you on an exploratory journey through 16 different stories that give you insight into fiery dramas, unexpected traumas, in addition to the everyday struggles with relationships, medications, spirituality, addictions, food intolerances, and chemical imbalances. She even tells her own story of recovery from Rheumatoid Arthritis.

For over thirty years Banayat has used storytelling in her professional fine art career and has graced the pages of this book with images from her original artworks.  The artwork sets a beautiful tone for introspection. This book was designed to leave out on your coffee table where you can read one or two stories at a time and ponder the contents.


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