7 TED Talks by Amazing Women That’ll Inspire You

1. Sarah Kay: If I Should Have A Daughter

Spoken word poet Sarah Kay tells the story of her journey from a teenager, when she used to soak up verses at the New York’s Bowery Poetry Club till she became a teacher connecting kids with the power of self-expression through Project V.O.I.C.E.

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Sarah Kay’s spoken word poetry and personal story motivates you to live life courageously. Her simple steps on pursuing what she believes is to tell yourself you can, you will, and focus on things that are specifically you. Because you tell your stories best. Her story shows a lot of grit which many of us need in order to make things happen.

2. Hyeonseo Lee: My Escape from North Korea

Hyeonseo Lee grew up in North Korea thinking her country was the best place on the planet. But when she started to wonder, and soon saw the flaws in her country, she escaped at the tender age of 14. She lived as a refugee in China and had to hide her identity to survive.

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A personal story of survival and hope. As we listen to her hardship and challenges, ours seem nothing compared to hers! An inspiration for us on being strong in times of adversity, giving thanks in good times, and giving back to those who need.

3. Elizabeth Gilbert: Your Elusive Creative Genius

You would probably know her. She’s the one who wrote that famous book “Eat, Pray, Love”, which inspired all of us to throw in our towels and travel the world. In this talk however, she delves into that elusive thing called creativity. She muses about how we’re so afraid of our creativity not meeting the expectations of others, that we would rather ruin our creative genius.

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Gilbert believes that everyone has a little bit of genius in them. Including you and I. She gives tips on how to harness that creativity within us and make something out of it. Everyone should watch this video and uncover your genius.

4. Brené Brown: The Power of Vulnerability

Vulnerability researcher Brown explains humanity, and human connections. Everybody feels that they’re not good enough. She explains how her research taught her why this happens – because we are all very vulnerable. The one thing that keeps us out of connection, is our fear that we’re not worthy of connection. In her research, she found that people who couldn’t be compassionate to themselves, couldn’t treat others with compassion. She also found that embracing your vulnerability is the first step to fulfillment.

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This will change the way you see vulnerability and life.  It’ll also make you look at the methods you’re using to make yourself happy, and be courageous enough to accept your vulnerability instead of putting up a wall.

5. Sheryl Sandberg: Why We Have Too Few Women Leaders

Facebook COO Sandberg talks about the great disparity between male and female leaders up on top. She explains the three key reasons this is happening and gives actionable steps to beat the system.  Sandberg believes that women are limiting their own possibilities by doubting themselves and not sitting at the table like the men are.

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Sandberg’s speech empowers and motivates you to do something about your career and life. Put your hand up, keep it up, and don’t write yourself out of the picture until YOU are done.  The advice given here would actually work for both women and men wanting to strut forward in their careers.

6. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: We Should All Be Feminists

With her tongue firmly in cheek, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie describes herself as a happy African feminist who doesn’t hate men and who loves lip gloss and high heels but for herself and not for men. She gives us a brief glance into the patriarchal society that she (and all of us) lives in, and delivers a powerful message about how gender equality can be taken seriously by all of us.

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You’ll laugh at the little anecdotes she throws in, but also nod in agreement to all the wisdom in her words.

7. Lizzie Velasquez: How Do You Define Yourself?

Lizza Velasquez asks the important question that we should all ask ourselves. “Who are you”? What defines who you are as a person? She shares about her struggle with being labelled “the ugliest person in the world” and her rare medical condition which brought her that label. Despite all these challenges, Velasquez is now a well-known motivational speaker and writer. She is a testament that life is in your hands. You define who you are, not other people.

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She sends a meaningful message in this 13-minute video that everyone should hear and understand for themselves. Warning! ONIONS!


Have a favourite Ted Talk? Let us know in the comments below!


Compiled by: Jolene Foo

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