11 Powerful TED Talks for Stepping Up and Making a Difference

TED is one of the best organizations on the planet.

Their 2-to 18-minute videos help to inspire and spread ideas and creativity in ways humans never could have dreamed of just a few decades ago.

In addition to spreading ideas and inspiration, TED is one of the best ways to start surrounding yourself with passionate world experts in the 12 categories.

And all for free, at the click of a button.

What a miraculous world we live in!

Below are 11 of the most powerful videos we’ve seen relative to the career category.

These videos can profoundly alter the way you approach your career, and the world.

Whether you’re in the mood for a full-length TED Talk marathon, or just scheduling one of these videos to watch each day this week — we hope you enjoy the show!

11 Powerful TED Talks for Stepping Up and Making a Difference

1. Simon Sinek – How Great Leaders Inspire Action

Simon Sinek presents a simple but powerful model for how leaders inspire action, starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers — and as a counterpoint Tivo, which (until a recent court victory that tripled its stock price) appeared to be struggling.

2. Steve Jobs – How to Live Before You Die

Drawing from some of the most pivotal points in his life, Steve Jobs, CEO and co-founder of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, urged graduates to pursue their dreams and see the opportunities in life’s setbacks — including death itself — at the university’s now famous 114th Commencement on June 12, 2005.

3. Brené Brown – The Power of Vulnerability

Brené Brown studies human connection — our ability to empathize, belong, and love. In a poignant and funny talk at TEDxHouston, 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. This is a powerful talk to witness and share.

4. Elizabeth Gilbert – Your Elusive Creative Genius

Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person “being” a genius, all of us “have” a genius. It’s a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk.

5. Rory Sutherland – Perspective Is Everything

The circumstances of our lives may matter less than how we see them, says Rory Sutherland. At TEDxAthens, he makes a compelling case for how reframing is the key to happiness.

6. Sir Ken Robinson – School Kills Creativity

Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.

7. Cameron Herold – Let’s Raise Kids to Be Entrepreneurs

Bored in school, failing classes, at odds with peers: This child might be an entrepreneur, says Cameron Herold. At TEDxEdmonton, he makes the case for parenting and education that helps would-be entrepreneurs flourish — as kids and as adults. Filmed in Edmonton, Canada.

8. Amy Cuddy – Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are

Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy argues that “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can boost feelings of confidence, and might have an impact on our chances for success.

9. Jonathan Fields – Turning Fear into Fuel for Brilliance

How to turn fear from a source of anxiety and paralysis into fuel for action and achievement.

10. Larry Smith – Why You Will Fail to Have a Great Career

Throughout his three-decade career here at the University of Waterloo, Larry Smith has inspired legions of students to take up the mantle of economics with his passionate and homespun tales of economic wizardry. A renowned story-teller, teacher and youth leadership champion, Larry has also coached and mentored countless numbers of students on start-up business management and career development strategies.

11. Benjamin Zander – The Transformative Power of Classical Music

Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it — and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.

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