Ted Talk Friday: How can groups make good decisions?

I am a huge fan of Dan Ariely and this real-life study is a powerful example of the power of discussion and collaboration. What scares me about this talk is diversity; in so many seats of power, we lack the diversity we need to reach good, ethical decisions. While we might deliberate as much as necessary, when there aren’t enough diverse voices in the room…deliberation can only do so much.

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Do you struggle with “groupthink”? Do you agree with this advice on how we can improve our decision-making?

Ted Talk Friday: Beautiful new words to describe obscure emotions

I recently learned that a loved one passed away yesterday. She loved words and was a scrabble master until the day she passed away in her late 90s. Such a sharp and thoughtful mind and spirit. This talk on words is something she would certainly enjoy.

I have always enjoyed learning about new words and etymologies. This talk takes a fascinating look at how we view words and how we create meaning. I always think of my favorite word in Spanish, sobremesa, which is the conversation that occurs at the table after dinner. There is no direct translation into a singular word in English and it exemplifies the cultural differences and differences in the way we express ourselves. I hope you enjoy this talk and glimpse into the world of meaning-making with words.

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Do you think we need new words? How do you feel about making new words?

Ted Talk Friday: Are emotions contagious in the workplace?

I saw this talk in person in the Spring of 2016 and fell in love with Brandon Smith‘s work as the “Workplace Therapist.” I found his ideas fascinating before working in an office, but now that I work a regular 9 to 5 job I see his theory in action. I am lucky to work in an office that has contagious emotions, but contagious emotions of almost exclusively the good, productive kind. It is common knowledge that the mood and outlook your friends have rubs off on you, but the same goes for your coworkers. Choose wisely!

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Have you experienced contagious emotions in the workplace? How do you handle negative people?

Ted Talk Friday: What makes technology so habit-forming?

Nir Eyal is an Emory alum and has been referenced numerous times in one of my favorite podcasts, Note to Self. He poses an interesting idea about technology and why it has a death grip on our minds and behaviors. I think he is really on to something; I find myself compulsively checking my Instagram, Facebook messages, and even this blog on occasion. I think it is all about setting healthy limits and using technology in ways that enhance wellbeing rather than detract from it.

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Do you agree with Eyal’s argument?

Ted Talk Friday: The revolutionary power of diverse thought

This talk taps into so many preconceived ideas we have about people from different cultures. I think we automatically assume we are all so different based on where we are from, but we forget about the common humanity and emotional experience we all share. Shafak does a beautiful job putting this idea into words, with a particular emphasis on political thought.

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Do you agree with Shafak?

Ted Talk Friday: Life’s Third Act

I have loved the show “Grace and Frankie,” which Jane Fonda just show happens to star in. The show features two strong older female leads living full, exciting lives. Jane Fonda does a wonderful job discussing how aging can include incredible personal benefits and new ways of existing in the world. The fact that two-thirds of how we age is a choice. We can alter, and improve, our own experience of getting older.

 

 

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Do you fear aging?

Ted Talk Friday: The Psychology of Your Future Self

Dr. Dan Gilbert is one of my favorite Positive Psychology researchers; this short talk is so engaging and fascinating. I think it is so fascinating how greatly we underestimate how much we will change during the next decade. This talk really provokes me to think about how this underestimation will impact my lived experience–from what I do to where I live. Even with this knowledge, I’m sure I will still underestimate the amount of change that will occur in the next years; while this might be a negative feature, I think it also serves to protect our sense of self.

 

 

 

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Do you agree with Dr. Gilbert? Do you expect to change within the next year? 10 years?

Ted Talk Friday: Depression is a disease of civilization

I initially watched this talk because it was given at Emory (my alma mater), and I quickly came to love it for the same reasons I love Emory. Dr. Ilardi looks at the facts about depression as an illness in a larger context–in the context of history, society, and medicine at large. I learned a great deal from this talk–I hope you do too!

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Do you agree with his opinion on depression? Do you agree that exercise is medicine?