Top TED Talks to Watch Before the End of the Year

Published on by Nika Zobec

As 2019 wraps up, it is time to reflect on our lives and how our actions impact everything around us.

No year is a perfect one. Life, in fact, is a roller coaster of emotions and experiences. There is no secret recipe to make the ride smooth. All we can do is reflect, learn, and improve. With this in mind, we have compiled a list of our favorite TED Talks that are both educational and inspirational. The talks are different in their themes and approaches, but each one of them has a message worth listening to, and worth spreading.

So take a moment to watch one, if not all of them, over the next few holiday weeks. They are bound to leave a lasting impression, and help you lead a more inspired 2020!

Happy Watching!

[Note: Most of the talks can be found on the official TED website, and they all have Chinese subtitles. To watch them simply click on the link.]


Education & Learning


Do Schools Kill Creativity by Ken Robinson

Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity. Ken argues that being creative means that you have to be willing to be wrong, and the education system treats being wrong as the worst thing possible. In doing this, education teaches away children’s natural urge to ‘give it a go’.
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School in the Clouds by Sugata Mishra

Sugata Mitra makes his bold TED Prize wish: Help me design the School in the Cloud, a learning lab in India, where children can explore and learn from each other -- using resources and mentoring from the cloud. Hear his inspiring vision for Self Organized Learning Environments (SOLE).
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Emotional Intelligence


How to Let Altruism Be Your Guide by Matthieu Ricard

What is altruism? Put simply, it's the wish that other people may be happy. And, says Matthieu Ricard, a happiness researcher, and a Buddhist monk, altruism is also a great lens for making decisions, both for the short and long term, in work and in life.
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How to Fix a Broken Heart by Guy Winch

At some point in our lives, almost every one of us will have our heart broken. Imagine how different things would be if we paid more attention to this unique emotional pain. Psychologist Guy Winch reveals how recovering from heartbreak starts with a determination to fight our instincts to idealize and search for answers that aren't there -- and offers a toolkit on how to, eventually, move on. Our hearts might sometimes be broken, but we don't have to break with them.
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Life is Easy, Why Do We Make it So Hard by Jon Jandai

Jon Jandai is a farmer in northern Thailand. He built a Pun Pun organic farm in northern Chiang Mai. He spends 2 hours a day building his own house. Weare committed to promoting sustainable agriculture. He said: Life is actually simple and fun, but people complicate it.
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[Emotional Intelligence] The Power of Vulnerability by Brené Brown

Brené Brown studies human connection – our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity. A talk to share.
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Social Impact



The Way We Think About Charity is Dead Wrong by Dan Pallotta

Activist and fundraiser Dan Pallotta calls out the double standard that drives our broken relationship to charities. Too many nonprofits, he says, are rewarded for how little they spend-- not for what they get done. Instead of equating frugality with morality, he asks us to start rewarding charities for their big goals and big accomplishments (even if that comes with big expenses). In this bold talk, he says: Let's change the way we think about changing the world.
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The Case for Letting Business Solve Social Problems by Michael Porter

Why do we turn to nonprofits, NGOs and governments to solve society's biggest problems? Michael Porter admits he's biased, as a business school professor, but he wants you to hear his case for letting business try to solve massive problems like climate change and access to water. Why? Because when business solves a problem, it makes a profit-- which lets that solution grow.
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Tech & Innovation



How AI Can Save Our Humanity by Kai-Fu Lee

AI is massively transforming our world, but there's one thing it cannot do: love. In a visionary talk, computer scientist Kai-Fu Lee details how the US and China are driving a deep learning revolution -- and shares a blueprint for how humans can thrive in the age of AI by harnessing compassion and creativity. "AI is serendipity," Lee says. "It is here to liberate us from routine jobs, and it is here to remind us what it is that makes us human".
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Ethical Leadership



Start With Why - How Great Leaders Inspire Action by Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership -- starting with a golden circle and the question: "Why?" His examples include Apple, MartinLuther King Jr., and the Wright brothers ... he says.
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Radical Wisdom for a Company, a School, a Life by Ricardo Semler

What if your job didn't control your life? Brazilian CEO Ricardo Semler practices a radical form of corporate democracy, rethinking everything from board meetings to how workers report their vacation days (they don't have to). It's a vision that rewards the wisdom of workers, promotes work-life balance — and leads to some deep insight on what work, and life, is really all about. Bonus question: What if schools were like this too?
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The Anti-CEO Playbook by Hamdi Ulukaya

Profit, money, shareholders: these are the priorities of most companies today. But at what cost? In an appeal to corporate leaders worldwide, Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya calls for an end to the business playbook of the past -- and shares his vision for a new, "anti-CEO playbook" that prioritizes people over profits. "This is the difference between profit and true wealth," he says.
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Health & Wellness



Sleep is Your Super Power by Matt Walker

Sleep is your life-support system and Mother Nature's best effort yet at immortality, says sleep scientist Matt Walker. In this deep dive into the science of slumber, Walker shares the wonderfully good things that happen when you get sleep - and the alarmingly bad things that happen when you don't, for both your brain and body. Learn more about sleep's impact on your learning, memory, immune system and even your genetic code - as well as some helpful tips for getting some shut-eye.
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If you have other recommendations on those that we must watch please share them with us via email.