The best TED talks for…
this weekend, Tedxlondon hosted its biggest annual event at London’s Royal Festival Hall. It’s been a meteoric rise for the TED Talks – a series of online speeches on everything from science to celebrity, where the world’s leading speakers give the ‘talk of their lives’ in 18 minutes or less. The first talks were posted on 27 June 2006 and they’ve now become as much an integral part of our cultural landscape as novels, albums or films.
Here, the Grazia team pick out some of their favourite, most inspirational talks – and the best moments to watch them.
Steve Peters: Optimising the performance of the human mind best for: Calming down an anxious, overwhelmed brain
A psychiatrist who has worked with the minds of some of the world’s biggest sporting stars and the author of The Chimp Paradox, Steve Peters talks through the human mind, how it works (with and against us) and how to make it function optimally, while also being less anxious.
James Rhodes: Music and the inner self best for: Finding some solace
Internationally renowned pianist Rhodes – whose memoir Instrumental, about the sexual abuse he suffered as a child and his salvation in music, has become a huge success – talks through our relationship with music. He argues that listening to the right piece helps us understand ourselves and the difficult world around us.
Sarah Jones: What does the future hold? best for: Dealing with that feeling of dread about what’s in store
In this improvisation masterclass, Sarah plays 11 diverse characters from the future – transforming from one to the other, chameleon-like. Her ‘friends’ answer questions from the TED audience about the world they’re living in – everything from dating and the music scene to microchips in the brain and a cure for baldness. Funny and reassuring.
Thomas Suarez: A 12-year-old app developer best for: A motivational kick up the bum
Because, what could be more motivating than seeing a 12-year-old talk about the internationally used apps he designed, programmed and released?
Mary Roach: 10 things you didn’t know about the orgasm best for: Erm… educating yourself
The author of Bonk talks through some of the best and most obscure scientific research into our sex lives to expose interesting and enlightening facts about the Big O. Including the woman who regularly came from brushing her teeth…
Ashley Graham: Plus-size? More like my size best for: Self-acceptance
Seeing Ashley Graham confidently strut around the stage full of self-love for every inch of her body is refreshing and inspiring. Telling her life story and how she came to love the ‘girl who was pretty for a big girl’ might just make you rethink your cellulite.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story best for: Cultural awareness
Beyoncé’s favourite feminist, author and thinker describes the importance of finding her own authentic cultural voice, and explains how only hearing one single story about another person or country creates misunderstanding and limited perspective.