Six of the best TED talks to kick-start your week

Started in 1984 as a one off event, TED has grown to become the monster it is today, providing inspiration to the world, and doing it for free. Over 2,400 talks are available on their website, varying in topic from culture and art, to technology and design and everything in between.

Here are a few of our faves to give your brain that much-needed kick-start to carry you through the week.

Do schools kill creativity? – Sir Ken Robinson

One of the most-watched TED talks of all time describes the idea that due to the fact that the education system is significantly focused on the left brain, or the logical side of thinking, it stifles the creativity seen in all young children.

His evidence includes the lack of rewards for the creative arts in comparison to academic exams and touches on the hotly debated topic of medicine in today’s society, talking about how children are given calming medicine over having their spirit nourished.

The best stats you’ve ever seen – Hans Rosling

“Forget what you know” says doctor and statistician Hans Rosling, who attempts to use statistics to debunk myths to do with the developing world. We won’t say much more as the stats themselves are as interesting as the way they’re presented, but Rosling finds links between everything from GDP and child mortality to fertility and life expectancy.

The history of our world in 18 minutes – David Christian

Perhaps given away by the title, in this talk David Christian briefly describes each stage in or world’s development.

Some of the more modern steps include the growth of the brain, enabling us to learn, and the ability to pass on this knowledge through language, as well as the modern ‘collective’ brain of the information era. An educational talk that will leave you feeling rather humble.

Elon Musk – The mind behind Tesla, SpaceX, SolarCity 

Elon Musk may just be the world’s greatest living innovator, and possibly the greatest living CEO. It takes a lot for one man to succeed to the level Musk has experienced in one industry. To do it in three is borderline ridiculous. However, what really sets the man apart is the way in which his inventions and ideas really have the potential to change the world, not just the number of 0’s in his bank account. Step inside the mind of a genius, if only for a few minutes.

Why we do what we do – Tony Robbins

What is it that drives you in life? Tony Robbins understands human needs. If you’re creative and determined enough, no matter what resources you have available to you, it’s the resourcefulness that counts. As a leading expert in leadership psychology, this man knows a little bit more than most about reaching your potential.

Embrace the shake – Phil Hansen

Phil Hansen wanted to be an artist, but thought when he was in art school that permanent nerve damage in his right hand — which prevented him from drawing a straight line — wouldn’t let him. This talk is about embracing limitations to drive your creativity, and of course, never giving up on your dreams.

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