It’s easy to be a fan of TED Talks – they’re full of insights on everything from human nature to scientific breakthroughs to trends in design. They’re inspirational, informative and eye opening in ways that can help you become a better person and a better professional. However, there are over 2,200 of these talks available to watch online, and it can be overwhelming to decide which ones are worth your time.
With some guidance from Business Insider, Entrepreneur, and LifeHack, we’ve gone through the “Best Of” lists to come up with five TED Talks that will inspire you personally and professionally in 2018.
How great leaders inspire action – Simon Sinek
Why are some people are better at inspiring action than others? Starting with examples from Martin Luther King’s leadership in the Civil Rights Movement to Apple’s leadership in the business world, Mr. Sinek discusses the patterns that predict the success of various leaders. One line speaks particularly strongly to business owners: “People don’t buy what you do. People buy why you do it.”
The happy secret to better work – Shawn Anchor
Mr. Anchor’s hilarious speech on the psychology of positivity and how happiness is what makes us work productively.
The single biggest reason why startups succeed – Bill Gross
An attempt to enumerate all the reasons why one startup might be more successful than another. As a serial entrepreneur and a mentor for other startups, Gross has seen great businesses fail and questionable businesses succeed, and this experience drove him to quantify exactly why these differences exist.
One simple trick can get you to stop procrastinating – Matt Cutts
Inspired by filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, Google engineer Matt Cutts decided to try something new for 30 days every month. “I noticed that as I started to do more and harder 30-day challenges, my self-confidence grew,” he says. “I went from desk-dwelling computer nerd to the kind of guy who bikes to work. For fun!”
“Success is a lifestyle, not a destination.” – Richard St. John
If you think of success as a destination, you’re setting yourself up for failure according to Mr. St. John. True success, he says, is a lifestyle that you must dedicate yourself to indefinitely. “Why do so many people reach success and then fail? One of the big reasons is, we think success is a one-way street. So we do everything that leads up to success, but then we get there. We figure we’ve made it, we sit back in our comfort zone, and we actually stop doing everything that made us successful,” he says.
“Want to be more productive? Sleep more.” – Arianna Huffington
Arianna Huffington, Huffington Post editor in chief, is one of the most vocal proponents of the benefits of sleep. She explored them at length in her latest book, “The Sleep Revolution.” In this talk, she explains that the workaholic tendency to flaunt how little sleep one needs to be productive is not based in reality.