Ten Ted Talks in Two Sentences

Ted Talks

I’m probably the last person on the planet to know that TED is not a movie about a stuffed bear who comes to life with a wicked sense of humor. TED is in fact for individuals “who seek a deeper understanding of the world.” But in case you’re like me and a little late to the TED party, here’s what it’s about. TED stands for: technology, entertainment, and design. TED conferences began in 1984 with technical origins, but have grown and expanded globally to include many educational areas. Tickets to TED conferences can run upwards of $17,000 but on average $6,oo0, for a week of seeing, hearing, watching and learning from 20 minute speeches from bright minds.

Or you could go to their website ted.com and watch it for free. So that’s what I did. I went to the TED Top 20 page and decided to pick 10 of the speeches and summarize the premise in two sentences. Why? First just to challenge myself to see if I could take these complex thoughts and whittle it down into two sentences, and second, in the hopes to share these intriguing topics in a simple manner. Here we go in no particular order.

  1. The Power of Introverts – Susan Cain

Solitude is mandatory for creativity. Educators and businesses should limit group projects for students/employees in order to encourage individual creative thinking and honor the quiet self.

  1. Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are – Amy Cuddy

It’s one thing to deconstruct another’s body language, but can you force your body language to create a positive outcome? Take away: before next big meeting, stand in Superman/Wonder Woman pose for two minutes and see the results.

  1. Why We Do What We Do – Tony Robbins

Tony considers himself the “why guy” as he teaches others to master the art of fulfillment. The reason we grow emotionally is so we have something to give of value.

  1. How to Spot a Liar – Pamela Meyer

Science backs that lying is a cooperative act and humans are ambivalent with the truth. The most dangerous person, though, is when anger turns to contempt, recognizable by the curling of the upper lip.

  1. How Great Leaders Inspire Action – Simon Sinek

There is a golden circle code of knowing what inspires and running a business from the aspect of: Why, first, How, second, and What, third. The goal is to do business with people who get why you do what you do.

  1. The Power of Vulnerability – Brené Brown

Vulnerability is the core of shame and fear and our struggle for worthiness, but vulnerability is also where joy, creativity and belonging are born from. Repeat the following phrase (as you stand like Wonder Woman) “I am enough.”

  1. Do Schools Kill Creativity – Ken Robinson (*Very Funny)

Creativity is as important in school as literacy, mathematics and sciences, however as children age the educational system quashes this. Young kids aren’t afraid to be wrong and if you’re not prepared to be wrong you will never come up with anything original.

  1. The Surprising Side of Happiness – Dan Gilbert

Natural happiness is what we get when we get what we wanted and Synthetic happiness is what we get when we make what we want after we don’t get it. After one year, the individual who won the lottery and the individual who suffered paralysis, measured the same levels of happiness.

  1. The Happy Secret to Better Work – Shawn Achor (*Funny but Speaks Fast)

When we are told we’ll achieve happiness after we achieve after we achieve success, we are putting happiness always out of reach. Journaling one positive experience and random acts of kindness can transform your happiness factor.

  1. The Power of Motivation – Dan Pink

There is a mismatch between what science knows and what business does. Science has proven that higher incentives and rewards narrows focus and leads to poorer performances, and yet, CEO’s are still provided golden parachutes.

If you ever need a quick self-pep-talk, TED talks are the way to go. There is a collective community seeking answers and that helps you feel better knowing you’re not alone. Pick one and give it a try.


Ten Ted Talks in Two Sentences
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