Want to get out of that “meh” feeling and start finding your flow? Interested in learning more about how mRNA works? Looking for ways to have constructive conversations and deepen your relationships? From speeches on education to the practice of mindfulness, TED Talks are the perfect source of inspiration and taking tiny steps toward showing up as your best self.
Here are the talks that most intrigued and inspired in 2021, including talks by Adam Grant and 7-year old Molly Wright.
10. The Counterintuitive Way to be More Persuasive by Niro Sivanthan
About the speaker: Sivanathan is an Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at the London Business School. His award-winning research has garnered international press coverage and he is the recipient of numerous teaching awards, including being selected as one of the World’s 40 Best B-School Professors under 40 by Poets and Quants in 2016.
What this talk is about: How our judgments, decisions and behaviors are regulated by the psychological experience of being cloaked with status and power.
9. The Cure for Burnout (Hint: It Isn’t Self-Care) by Emily Nagoski and Amelia Nagoski
About the speakers: Emily Nagoski is the award-winning author of the New York Times bestselling Come As You Are and The Come As You Are Workbook, and coauthor, with her sister, Amelia, of the New York Times bestseller Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle.
What this talk is about: In an introspective and deeply relatable conversation, the authors detail three telltale signs that stress is getting the best of you — and share actionable ways to feel safe in your own body when you’re burning out.
What this talk is about: In this illuminating conversation, the immunologists share the fascinating story of how their decades of mRNA research powered the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine — and forecast what this breakthrough science could mean for the future of vaccines and other immunotherapy treatments.
7. Using Your Voice is a Political Choice by Amanda Gorman
What this talk is about: In this fierce talk and performance, Gorman explains why poetry is inherently political, pays homage to her honorary ancestors and stresses the value of speaking out despite your fears.
6. How Your Memory Works – And Why Forgetting is Totally Okay by Lisa Genova
What this talk is about: Genova wields her ability to tell a story and her knowledge of the human brain to discuss medical conditions like Alzheimer’s in warmly human terms. She explores how we remember, why we forget and what we can do to improve and protect our memories.
5. The 1-Minute Secret to Forming a New Habit by Christine Carter
What this talk is about: You know how resolutions often go: you set a goal and start strong … then the motivation runs out and feelings of frustration and shame creep in. The struggle is real — but what if it doesn’t have to be? Carter shares a simple step to shift your mindset and keep you on track to achieving your grandest ambitions.
4. The Science Behind How Parents Affect Child Development by Yuko Munakata
About the speaker: Yuko Munakata is a professor in the Department of Psychology and Center for Mind and Brain at the University of California, Davis.
What this talk is about: Parents, take a deep breath: how your kids turn out isn’t fully on you. Of course, parenting plays an important role in shaping who children become, but psychologist Yuko Munakata offers an alternative, research-backed reality that highlights how it’s just one of many factors that influence the chaotic complexity of childhood development.
3. How to Have Constructive Conversations by Julia Dhar
About the speaker: Julia Dhar is a partner at Boston Consulting Group, where she leads the firm’s behavioral insights and behavioral economics initiatives. She helps C-suite executives and frontline managers apply those same tools of communication and negotiation at the moments that matter.
What this talk is about: In this practical talk, Dhar shares three essential features of productive disagreements grounded in curiosity and purpose. The end result? Constructive conversations that sharpen your argument and strengthen your relationships.
2. How to Stop Languishing and Start Finding Flow by Adam Grant
What this talk is about: Have you found yourself staying up late, joylessly bingeing TV shows and doomscrolling through the news, or simply navigating your day uninspired and aimless? Chances are you’re languishing — a psychic malaise that has become all too common after many months of the pandemic. He breaks down the key indicators of languishing and presents three ways to escape that “meh” feeling and start finding your flow.
1. How Every Child Can Thrive by Five by Molly Wright
About the speaker: Molly Wright, a student from Queensland, Australia, is a passionate advocate for early childhood development. At just seven years old, she’s one of the youngest people ever to give a TED Talk.
What this talk is about: Breaking down the research-backed ways parents and caregivers can support children’s healthy brain development, Wright highlights the benefits of play on lifelong learning, behavior and well-being, sharing effective strategies to help all kids thrive by the age of five.
Question: Which of these remarkable TED Talks did you find most inspiring?
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