Binge Watching Ted Talks

While writing my dissertation, my routine goes something like this most mornings:

  1. Stop at the local pastry shop and get my favorite morning pastry: slightly warmed spinach crustada.
  2. Drive to my office at the university.
  3. Circle for a few minutes to find parking.
  4. Hope I don’t hit any of the bicyclists who drive the wrong way on one-way streets.
  5. Park.
  6. Walk to my office.
  7. Say hello to my colleagues.
  8. Find my office.
  9. Turn on computer. Answer any emails from students or administrators that might be pressing.
  10. Make sure nothing important has happened on Facebook that might be life altering.
  11. Find my earphones.
  12. Scroll through YouTube to find a full concert from one of my favorite musicians: Adele, Guns N Roses, Bruno Mars, Elton John, John Mellencamp OR alternately, scroll through and find motivational or educational speeches or lectures (a bit tough to write and listen to educational lectures at the same time, though).
  13. Post a sign on my office door: in effect, Do Not Disturb.
  14. Hit “play”

Yesterday was a Ted Talk day; I spent most of my afternoon listening to talks about culture, motivation, the state of the environment…a fairly eclectic collection of videos from many different great thinkers.I always want to share the great ideas I come across on the Internet, and also, writing a blog post gives me a break from my dissertation for a few minutes, so I thought I’d share a few of the Ted Talks on my playlist yesterday with the good folks at

Anyone who’s written a dissertation or thesis understands how easy it is to find excuses for not writing.

Rich Benjamin: Whitopia

Have you ever wondered what it’s like living in a different culture? Rich Benjamin wondered, too, and tells you all about it in this fantastic Ted Talk.

Sheryl Sandberg: Why Women Don’t Lean In

What does it really mean for women to lean in in the workforce? It means keeping your hand raised, not giving up your place at the table, it means never underestimating your self worth.

Bill Gates: Innovating to Zero

Gates offers options for alternative energy resources, highlighting the importance of investing in energy resources that will reduce carbon emissions to zero in the next 40 years.


Jane McGonigal: how to Add 7 1/2 Minutes to Your Life

How do you save your own life? Jane McGonigal started gaming, and reaching out to others. Watch Jane’s Ted Talk below to see how she increased her own resilience, and overcame traumatic brain injury through gaming.

Sirena Huang: An 11 Year Old and her Magical Violin

For your listening pleasure, a violin prodigy.

Kelly McGonigal: How to Make Stress Your Friend

No, you aren’t seeing double: check out Jane McGoniga’s twin sister, Kelly, in one of my favorite Ted Talks: How to Make Stress Your Friend.

One thought on “Binge Watching Ted Talks

  1. What’s so bad about riding your bike the wrong way down a one way street? Why do you think I got a bike in the first place?

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