I appreciate TED talks as a short, daily way to hear other people’s opinions, thoughts, and both new and old ideas in a world that is ever-changing. I listen mostly on the TED Talks Daily podcast, but there are podcasts for specific TED talks on Business, Health, Society & Culture, Education, Science & Medicine, Technology, Kids & Family, News & Politics, Art, Music, and many of these categories are in Spanish too. Some of the talks are light and funny, some are heavy and sad, and there is everything in between. The following are five of the most inspiring that I’ve listened to…
Love Letters to Strangers – Hannah Brencher
I read both of Hannah Brencher’s books before ever watching her TED talk; either way, her story is one to keep close. In the midst of a dark time in her life, she invested her energy into encouraging others—strangers all over New York City—knowing she was not alone in her depression. Although this TED talk is dated 2012, the point Brencher makes rings true now more than ever—there is something special, and different, about writing a letter on a physical piece of paper over a Facebook post, tweet, email, or text. Find out more about her organization, The World Needs More Love Letters, here.
Struggling with depression? Don’t miss What Are the Unexpected Gifts of Depression? With Melissa Maimone – 095.
What Almost Dying Taught Me About Living – Suleika Jaouad
After more than four years working on a singular goal—surviving—Suleika Jaouad shares her story of the battle she faced once she came home from the hospital leukemia-free and the “reentry” into the world that no one warned her about. Her longing to know she was not alone in her experience took her on a journey she did not anticipate but desperately needed. Her inspiring story will remind you to continue to check on those family members and friends who are in the reentry stage after a traumatic occurrence.
Every Kid Needs a Champion – Rita Pierson
As a teacher, this is a TED talk that has inspired me many times. Rita Pierson speaks on the impact a relationship will have between a teacher and a student; the same is true for anyone who works with children. “Every child deserves a champion—an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be.”
Walking as a Revolutionary Act of Self Care – Vanessa Garrison & Morgan Dixon
Vanessa Garrison and Morgan Dixon answer the question that they have been asked countless times: why are black women dying faster and at higher rates than any other group of people in America from preventable, obesity-related diseases? Garrison and Dixon, inspired by the tenacity of their ancestors and black women who made huge impacts in history, now inspire black women in communities all across the country, with the understanding of deep, racial trauma, to walk for their health with GirlTrek.
The Power of Introverts – Susan Cain
In college, I took the Myers-Briggs personality test and got a score of 100% introvert; needless to say this talk on the power of introverts is one of my favorites. Susan Cain discusses the impact that introverts can have if they are allowed to be who they are in a world catered to extroverts. Despite my personality test scores assigned to me at the beginning of college, we are all, in fact, partly both introvert and extrovert, and can (and often do) change. In my case, in the six years since starting college and taking this personality test, I have become much more extroverted thanks to my closest friends being extroverted.
Susan Cain will inspire you, if you’re an introvert like me, to stop feeling badly for wanting smaller gatherings and more time to yourself; and if you’re an extrovert, to give the introverts in your life the space to feel okay with being who they were made to be, as well as taking time with your own thoughts if you’re not one to do so regularly.
Check out these TED talks, but don’t stop here! Dig around and find some that inspire you! It’s one simple way to grow as a strong woman of grit and grace.
For more inspiration in your everyday #gritandgracelife, check out:
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6 Ways to Focus on Self-Growth as a Woman
10 Behaviors Found in the Inspired Woman
5 Simple Ways to Be a Dreamer and a Doer
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You’ll love this podcast episode from This Grit and Grace Life: 5 Philosophies You Need for Your Grit and Grace Life – 083!