Have you ever had the feeling a good TED Talk gives you, where you watch it and you find yourself nodding along or saying ‘YES’ out loud or even starting to make mental plans on how you’re going to apply the content to your life?
That’s what all of these TED Talks in this playlist will do for you.
I’m a massive fan of TED Talks and I truly believe that sharing great ideas far and wide can inspire us to change our lives and change the world.
This is a playlist of TED Talks that will help you live your best life, inspire you to live the life you want, and motivate you to make any changes you need to live true to you.
1 – My Year Of Saying Yes To Everything by Shonda Rhimes
If you’ve read her book ‘A Year of Saying Yes’ you’ll know Shonda’s story (if not, it’s an awesome book, check it out). Shonda talks of losing her ‘hum’ – the addictive thing that gave her joy in her work and how she found that hum again.
She also talks of the power of play and the fact that we can all find 15 minutes, even on our worst day. “Work doesn’t work without play.I love that she doesn’t deny that she loves working more than she loves being at home.
I relate to the love of work and find that I feel like I shouldn’t love my work as much as I do now that I’m a mother. But it doesn’t mean that my family isn’t important to me, and that they don’t give me my ‘hum’, but that work is still important to me too.
2 – 2 Questions To Uncover Your Passion – And Turn It Into A Career by Noeline Kirabo
Ever wondered if there’s more to life than the day to day routines? This talk is about two simple (but not so easy to answer) questions that can help you look inward, find what your passion is, and how you can then take this passion and make it a career.
I love that this talk encourages you to go against the grain, challenge the ideas of ‘study, get a good job, work until retirement and then enjoy your life.
3 – How To Build Your Creative Confidence by David Kelley
David’s talk opens our eyes to the idea that we were so creative as children, without fear of criticism and judgement… until the moment when we were judged.
Then creativity became a fear for many. He also talks about the phobias in our lives and their relationship to confidence. With a focus on the idea that we are all creatives, this talk really gets you wondering what fears are holding you back from embracing your creativity.
Find his book here – Creative Confidence: Unleashing The Creative Potential Within Us All
4 – The 100 Things Challenge by Dave Bruno
‘We have more than we can afford on an order of magnitude.’ Dave talks about the model of excess, particularly focusing on consumerist America, and how we have more excess than we could possibly ever need.
We have more stuff and yet we still feel anxious. Simplicity is action.
Living a simple life we prove that we don’t need all that we aren’t validated by our excessive consumerism and it’s not what we need in order to thrive.
Thinking and understanding this is good, but living and taking action is key. So Dave took on the ‘100 Thing Challenge’ – where he lived for a year with just 100 or fewer things.
5 – Your Body Language May Shape Who You Are by Amy Cuddy
Start thinking about your body actions and how the way you use your body language to convey who you are and how you position yourself in this world.
Your body actions have a huge impact in so many areas of your life, far deeper than you would initially think.
We are also influenced by our own body language and the non-verbal expressions of power and dominance vs the expressions when you’re feeling powerless and how we make ourselves smaller. So incredibly interesting.
Find her book here – Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self To Your Biggest Challenges
6 – Try Something New For 30 Days by Matt Cutts
A nice, quick and to the point talk about how Matt decided to start using 30 day challenges to do things he had always wanted to do.
He was surprised at how doing these challenges inadvertently resulted in a boost in his own confidence.
When listening to this talk, have a think about what new things you’d like to try and what habits you could form in that time? Is there something you’re struggling to motivate yourself to change?
Perhaps a 30 day challenge could help you kick start it and get that habit happening.
7 – Emotional Intelligence: Using The Laws Of Attraction by D. Ivan Young
Our mind is incredibly powerful, and the way we talk about things and think about things will reflect in our lives.
So often we focus on the negative ‘oh I’ll never have what they have’ or ‘my bills are so expensive’ and therefore subconsciously attract negative into our lives.
Choose how you use your mind. Take the time to be quiet, be still and listen. This is one of the best and most concise talks about the Laws of Attraction I have ever seen. So good.
8 – How To Make Hard Choices by Ruth Chang
For an overthinker like me, this talk seriously speaks to my heart. Not all hard choices are big choices, hard choices aren’t hard because I’m incapable of making them.
Do you write the story of your life by making hard choices? Or do you just drift and take the easy option?
9 – “Everything Happens For A Reason” – And Other Lies I’ve Loved by Kate Bowler
Have you always believed, or have always been told, that good things happen to good people? Be good, be kind, and you’ll be rewarded. Or have you heard the overused cliche ‘everything happens for a reason?’
An insightful TED Talk about the beauty and difficulties in life, that challenges that come with facing your own mortality and how it can make you look differently at the world around you.
10 – How Do You Define Yourself? by Lizzie Velasquez
“What’s wrong with me?” The question, as parents, we hope our children never ask us.
Lizzie was faced with difficult challenges in her life, an extremely rare genetic disorder that affects her ability to gain weight, thus affecting her appearance, but she doesn’t let that define her.
This talk made me sit back and wonder what I let define me, or how I choose to define myself. Prepare for the tears as she talks about being labelled as ‘the worlds ugliest woman’.
11 – Meet Yourself: A User’s Guide To Building Self-Esteem by Niko Everett
“If you could meet yourself, you might really like her.” This talk hits right in the feels, if you’ve ever been in a situation where your self esteem has taken a hit, a relationship breakup, losing your job, having a baby, you can turn things around and build your own self esteem back up.
I love how this touches on how uncomfortable it is for many of us to accept a compliment. Filling our lives with more positivity results in us feeling more positive about ourselves.
Delete the negative, embrace the positive and create new stories about ourselves.
12 – 4 Habits Of All Successful Relationships by Dr. Andrea & Jonathan Taylor-Cummings
In the observations of Dr Andrea and Jonathan Taylor-Cummings, all successful relationships display the same four simple yet fundamental habits, of which they share in this must watch TED Talk.
These are habits that we can all learn, develop and implement into any relationship we have. The research shows that lacking quality relationships can have as much, if not more of an impact on our lifespan than obesity and lack of exercise.
This talk is a great eye-opener to the challenges in relationships and how you can modify the mindset you have to ensure you have a more successful relationship.
While I wouldn’t normally include a TED Talk about relationships in an article about living your best life, I feel this TED Talk is one that everyone should watch and helps you look at your relationships and your mindset around relationships a little differently.
13 – Getting Stuck In The Negatives (And How To Get Unstuck) by Alison Ledgerwood
I’m so glad I’m not the only person who gets stuck on negatives – it’s such a natural thing to do, especially as a people pleaser. How many times have you experienced this yourself?
My husband and I were discussing the successes we had and how often we quickly adapt to our successes and chase the next one, but we hold on to negatives for so much longer. You have to work to see the upside.
This is such a great talk to shake up how you approach your day and reframe how you talk about things in your life. Focusing more on the good things than the negatives and making more of an effort to see the upside.
14 – One Life-Changing Class You Never Took by Alexa Von Tobel
Our lack of formal education about personal finance means we are learning through trial and error, no wonder we are getting it so wrong! It’s the number one thing young people stress out about and so, so many people feel like their personal finances are out of their control.
We need more help, but where do we go?
The number of people living paycheck to paycheck is alarming. Our personal finance education needs to change.
This is an incredibly eye-opening talk that helps us realise how we got to where we are now.
15 – An ER Doctor On Triaging Your ‘Crazy Busy’ Life by Darria Long
The words we use matter and ‘crazy busy’ is a phrase we have all used at some point. But did you know that by simply saying ‘crazy busy’ you’re preparing yourself to not actually be able to handle what is coming your way?
You can be busy, without being crazy, and be in ready mode instead.
As someone who works in the Emergency Medical field, I can relate to the triaging system in your life and it’s easy for you to implement too.
Simply triaging different areas of your life can make a world of difference to that feeling of overwhelm, especially when you start moving more tasks to the ‘Green’ category.
This is by far not a comprehensive list of all the amazing TED Talks that can help you live your best life. There so are many talks by such amazing people that challenge your way of thinking in so many different ways.
Find more of our TED Talks playlists here – Ultimate List Of TED Talks Playlists.