All Women's Talk

7 TED Talks about Success That You've Got to Check out ...

By Michelle

TED is the place to be when it comes to sharing ideas, so why not check out TED talks about success? I’ve been watching TED for years now and it’s as simple as choosing a topic that I want and then seeing what’s out there. There are quite a few inspiring TED talks about success that have helped me redefine how I view success. Enjoy!

1 Alok Vaid-Menon

“I think we need to break-up with success, or at least how we currently define it.” These powerful words by Alok Vaid-Menon got me thinking. He talks about how we need to reach out to our neighbors rather than up to self-gratification. His TED talk about success points out valid holes in why we do the work we do. “The way to change the world is to fail to live up to its expectations.” With that as the first step, our view of success begins to change. Check out his talk and you will see for yourself what I’m raving about!

2 Diana Nyad

At age 62, Diana Nyad became the first person to swim across the open ocean between Cuba and Florida. She talks about her experience of chasing her elevated dream and the difference that made on her life. She hadn’t swum for 31 years! Yet she got herself out there and did her best. Success becomes the journey and the commitment that you put into following your dream. Her story continues to inspire me!


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3 Amy Cuddy

Amy Cuddy offers a life-hack to power. It’s how you pose it. Body language has a large impact on both your emotional and psychological state. Do you think that holding yourself up tall for an interview you are terrified for will have an impact? Well, it does. Cuddy explains how you can use your body to assert a sense of confidence in any stressful situation and shape who you are in the meantime. A very thought-provoking speech that may just get you readjusting how you stand.

4 David R. Dow

This talk may seem non-conventional as a TED talk about success but it raises some good ideas about how putting change into our society can make our world a more successful place. Here, Dow talks about programs that can be put in place to lower the crime rate, thus almost eliminating the death penalty. I think this talk steps upon success because it doesn’t merely talk about the morality of it. It offers constructive ways to make a difference. To be truly successful in anything is to leave it better than when you first came in contact with it.

5 Amy Purdy

Amy Purdy’s talk is rightly named “Living Beyond Limits.” Purdy may have lost both legs below the knees but that didn’t stop her from becoming a professional snowboarder. We are defined by the limits we set for ourselves. But what if we go beyond them? Purdy’s success story is really one of perseverance, determination and the desire not to be limited by what may have become an excuse. She amazes me.

6 Derek Sivers

My sister was talking to me the other day about a ‘brilliant’ idea she had to start her own magazine, which she knew would make her well-respected in her field. I looked at her and said, “Show me, don’t tell me.” Derek Sivers hits upon this point in his TED talk about success. Studies show that we are less likely to follow through on our goals when we’ve already received praise and admiration for announcing them. What’s more successful would be to keep your goals to yourself and then let your actions show your loved ones what you’ve been doing. The key is to do it!

7 Chip Conley

Chip Conley talks about how what we count in life makes this life worthwhile. A way to redefine success is to take into account what matters. He ties in Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and how to apply that to your life. But he turns it to the business world and life in the workplace. You should check this one out!

Success is a gnawing topic that touches everyone in today’s world. TED addresses the topic and offers some ideas worth spreading. Did any stand out to you? What are some other TED talks about success that I should check out?

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