5 Best TED Talks About Personal Growth


TED is an awesome site to learn and to discover new paradigms about personal growth. I regularly visit and watch new talks for inspiration and ideas. Here’s my top 5 TED Talks about personal growth. It’s about speakers of which I’ve also read some of their books. These are some of the most powerful idea’s I’ve read (and seen, in case of TED) so far. Enjoy!

#5 TED talk: How you get your ideas to spread – Seth Godin

Even if you’re not into sales or marketing, you need your ideas to spread. In every job, you need to sell something. In essence, you’re also selling something with your job: your labor. You need to convince people that they need your labor. That’s why everyone should be in the sales business. Here’s how to spread your ideas by Seth Godin.

#4 TED talk: The power of vulnerability – Brené Brown

Be it at home or at work; we want to feel connected to the people that are around us. We want to belong and be able to empathize. Being vulnerable and opening up to people helps us to connect. Vulnerability is to talk about our fears and what we’re afraid of. Here’s a talk about the science behind vulnerability and why it is important – and nothing to be ashamed of.

#3 TED talk: Power of habit by Charles Duhigg

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit” – Aristotle.

Habits are what we repeatedly do. We can think of ourselves as a caring person. However, if we spend our time criticizing other people and do not listen to others, this is not how we act. Thus, other people will (naturally) not see us as a caring person.

Therefore, it is important to see what habits we’ve formed and if this aligns with how we think of ourselves. Furthermore, it is important to create new and helpful habits, such as running and mindfulness. And to change habits that drag us down, such as negative self-talk. Here’s a great talk by Charles Duhigg about the science of habit formation. It describes the 3 fundamental elements of habit formation, which are cues, routines and rewards. For more information, also see my article about habit formation.

#2 TED talk: Mindfulness by Andy Puddicombe

We’re lost in thought for over 47 % of the time. 47! Mindfulness helps us to get out of our head.

That’s why I love mindfulness and I’m convinced it has many benefits to our health and in our ability to connect with other people. I’ve written a couple of articles about mindfulness and the science-backed benefits in case you want some more information about this, for instance in this and this article.

Benefits I personally experience is that I’m better able to concentrate and that I’m more resilient in dealing with stress. Although my body can react strongly to stressors, mindfulness helps me to concentrate, sleep and stay productive even during more difficult periods. It takes the edge off.

I also use an app for meditation exercises, which is called headspace. This talk is about the creator of the app, Andy Puddicombe. It’s an awesome talk, describing the benefits of mindfulness and at the same time dealing with the b/s stereotypes.

#1 TED talk: How great leaders inspire action by Simon Sinek

This is a talk about leadership. This talk is about why certain groups of people achieve more with the same resources. It all comes down how great leaders (like Steve Jobs or Martin Luther King) communicate: they start with why. Great leaders use the “golden circle” to communicate. The golden circle starts with why, then explains the how and ends up with what. They start by capturing the hearts of their followers (be it consumers, employees, you name it). You can only do this by starting with the why. This is because our brains are wired this way. More in this great talk below!

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