With everything happening in our world today, it is important to take time to let your mind wander and dedicate time to thinking about the future. A thought-provoking speech never fails to reaffirm your desire to innovate, create, and impact the future. Here are a few of my favorite TEDTalks:

“3 Questions To Ask Yourself About Everything You Do” Stacey Abrams

How you respond after setbacks is what defines your character. Stacey Abrams was the first black woman in the history of the United States to be nominated by a major party for governor — she lost that hotly contested race, but as she says: the only choice is to move forward. In an electrifying talk, she shares the lessons she learned from her campaign for governor of Georgia, some advice on how to change the world — and a few hints at her next steps. “Be aggressive about your ambition,” Abrams says.

“How Great Leaders Inspire Actions” Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership — starting with a golden circle and the question: “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King Jr., and the Wright brothers.

“The Puzzle of Motivation” Dan Pink

Career analyst Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don’t: Traditional rewards aren’t always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories — and maybe, a way forward.

“How to Make Stress Your Friend” Kelly McGonigal

Stress. It makes your heart pound, your breathing quicken and your forehead sweat. But while stress has been made into a public health enemy, new research suggests that stress may only be bad for you if you believe that to be the case. Psychologist Kelly McGonigal urges us to see stress as a positive, and introduces us to an unsung mechanism for stress reduction: reaching out to others.

“The Danger of a Single Story” Chimamanda Adichie

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.

What are some of your go-to talks when you want some inspiration? Drop your favorites in the comments below.

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