A Game Of Stories

Where Should We Begin

Where Should We Begin is designed to help bring out the storyteller in you during your next date, intimate get together, or meet up with friends.

Home Hero Image

Second Edition Gameplay Instructions

Note from Esther:

I love to listen to people share their stories, especially ones they haven’t told before. Whether in my therapy office, on my podcast, or at home around the table, I see stories as bridges that connect us to one another.

This is the basis of Where Should We Begin? A Game of Stories. It starts with a few simple prompts and ends with surprising discoveries about ourselves and one another.

As the host, you’ve gathered your partner, friends, or date for an adventure unlike any other. So grab a seat, pull a card, and be my guest in sharing the stories you rarely tell.

1) Intention:

In this game there are no winners or losers—everyone is on the same team. The goal is to come together around the magic of storytelling.

2) setup:

Unpack both decks of cards and mix them up.

To make the game “Safe For Work,” remove the Story Cards with a Pink Triangle in the bottom right corner:

Deal 7 cards to each player. Everyone may look at their hand. Place the remaining stack on the table to become the draw pile.

3) Whoever feels ready becomes the first Storyteller. Remember, the first story often sets the tone for the game. To begin, the first Storyteller rolls the dice and reads it aloud.

4) Thinking through the lens of the dice prompt, everyone —including the Storyteller—submits a card face down that they would like the Storyteller to answer.

5) The Storyteller shuffles the submitted cards and reads each aloud before placing them face up on the table.

6) The Storyteller chooses one card to answer, and shares a story.

7) After The Storyteller Shares:

Discard all of the used cards back into the box. Everyone draws 1 new card so that they always have 7. The role of Storyteller moves to the left and the new Storyteller rolls the dice.

8) Play until you’ve had your fill of great stories.

Tips from Esther:
1) Set The Table:

A game is a ritual that starts with creating ambiance. Stories become more fun when shared in a special setting. Put on some music, dim the lights, and clear your space.

2) The Art of Listening:

The Storyteller may share moments that fall between the cracks of normal conversation. Listen deliberately with more curiosity and less advice. Don’t be afraid to acknowledge the Storyteller by asking a follow-up question.

3) Set an Intention:

At my home, we often set an intention before we begin. For example: to surprise each other or to reveal secrets. Check in with one another’s progress along the way and at the end.

4) Speak from “I”:

A story is more powerful when told in the first person. Keep it personal, not general. Say “When I” rather than “You know when you…”

5) Story Len​gth:

This is a game of many stories. Storytellers, keep your tale to a few minutes at most so you can experience them all.

A Game of Stories by Esther Perel
estherperel.com @estherperelofficial
A special thank-you to:
Zac Hill
Elan Lee
Rogerio Lionzo
Nick Oxenhorn
Mary Alice Miller
Courtney Hamilton
Sara Kramer
Amanda Panneton
Jennifer Marler
Vika Viktoria
Adam Saul
Noam Saul
Jack Saul

Game Rules Version #1: Simple

The basic rules to Where Should We Begin utilize the Story Cards only, leaving out the Prompt Cards and tokens. This is perfect for a first time, around a dinner table, or if you want to keep it a little more casual.

Start changing your relationships for the better today

explore courses

Game Rules Version #2: Advanced

The advanced rules include all game elements, including the prompt cards and tokens. This is really where the game departs from the typical question deck. The combination of story cards and prompt cards means that no matter how many times you play, you're likely to have new combinations of prompts and lenses to provoke the telling of new stories. These are great for games between closer groups of friends, couples who want to incorporate the game into their relationship rituals, or adventurous newbies.

“I believe that human connection has transformative power in all aspects of our lives."

Letters from Esther

Monthly newsletter:

Exclusive personal reflections from Esther on relevant relationship topics.

Important takeaways to help you develop your relational intelligence.

A curated list of related resources to further explore.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.