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20 Most Inspiring TED Talks of All Time That You Should Not Miss

20 Most Inspiring TED Talks of All Time That You Should Not Miss

1. Isabel Allende: How to live passionately–no matter your age

No. of views: 117,643

Message: Isabel Allende gives an incredible perspective on how to live your life. Regardless of how old you are, you have the choice to live passionately.

2. Ron McCallum: How technology allowed me to read

No. of views: 56,568

Message: Ron McCallum, a man who has been blind for over six decades, talks about how technology gives tremendous benefits to the visually impaired.

3. Dan Pink breaks down the science behind motivation

No. of views: 3,906,618

Message: Dan Pink talks about how incentive design doesn’t spark creativity. Traditional rewards aren’t always as effective as we think.

4. Brené Brown discusses her personal request to understand the vulnerability behind humanity

No. of views: 2,686,043

Message: The ability to feel connected is what makes us feel alive. Brené Brown teaches us that “shame” is the fear of disconnection, which results in our vulnerability.

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5. Simon Sinek shares the pattern of great leaders

No. of views: 3,348,336

Message: Simon Sinek shares how great leaders inspire others to take action.

6. Amy Cuddy: How your body language shapes who you are

No. of views: 4,974,714

Message: Amy Cuddy discusses the ways we use body language to change the way our life unfolds.

7. Sir Ken Robinson believes that schools are killing our creativity.

No. of views:  7,120,563

Message: Sir Ken Robinson discusses how children’s creativity is educated out of them. There needs to be an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.

8. Angela Lee Duckworth defines the key to success in one small word

No. of views: 622,216

Message: Angela Lee Duckworth discusses how passion and perseverance can outweigh high IQs when it comes to success.

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9. Jane McGonigal promises to add 7.5 more minutes to your life

No. of views: 506,215

Message: Games can boost resilience, extend your lifespan and help avoid the five regrets of the dying, as Jane McGonigal explains in her talk.

10. David Pogue shares 10 simple, clever time saving tips for computer, web, smartphone and camera users.

No. of views: 475,454

Message: Save time to do more of what really matters to you. David Pogue shares his time-saving tips.

11. Alexander Tsiaras shares a powerful visualization of the human development.

No. of views: 1,674,559

Message: Alexander Tsiaras shares a powerful visualization of the development of the human body from conception.

12. Keith Barry shows how our brains can fool our bodies

No. of views: 3,059,461

Message: Our brains can be easily manipulated through the use of magic. Keith Barry shows us how.

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13. Shawn Achor shares the happy secret to better work

No. of views: 33,009

Message: Shawn gives a hilarious speech on the psychology of positivity and how happiness is what makes us work productively.

14. Pamela Meyer reveals how to spot a liar

No. of views: 4,217,711

Message: Honesty is a value worth preserving and recognizing. Pamela Meyer reveals tips and tricks on how to spot someone who isn’t telling the whole truth.

15. Elizabeth Gilbert believes that being a genius isn’t as rare as we believe

No. of views: 1,920,478

Message: Elizabeth Gilbert believes we all have a creative genius inside of us.

16. Dan Gilbert reveals the surprising science behind happiness

No. of views: 744,083

Message: We can feel truly happy even when things don’t go as planned, as Dan Gilbert explains in his TED talk.

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17. Tony Robbins discusses the invisible forces that inspires our action

No. of views: 744,083

Message: Emotion is the force of life. We have the ability to do things beyond ourselves. Tony Robbins explains more of this idea in his talk.

18. David Gallo shows jaw-dropping footage of the sea creatures of the deep

No. of views: 39,365

Message: More of our world should be investigated. You’ll be amazed at the footage David Gallo shows from the depths of the sea.

19. Susan Cain describes the secret power of introverts

No. of views: 3,381,559

Message: Introverts bring extraordinary talents and abilities to the world that should be celebrated. Susan Cain discusses in her talk what introverts bring to society.

20. Hans Rosling debunks myths about world development

No. of views: 1,219,945

Message: The U.S. may not be the best country in the world, and Hans Rosling tells the truths here.

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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