TED Conversations

Kate Torgovnick May

writer, TED


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What were you like as a teenager?

At TEDGlobal 2012 Sarah-Jayne Blakemore explained her research, which shows that the human brain doesn't stop developing in childhood — but continues changing throughout adolescence. In other words: the teenage brain is actually different from the adult brain. In your teens, the prefrontal cortex — the area of the brain involved in decision-making, planning, social interaction and self-awareness — is still developing, making teens more prone to both risk-taking and embarrassment.

This research certainly makes my teenage years make a lot more sense. And it got me thinking — what were YOU like as a teenager? How did you dress, what did you listen to, and how did you relate to adults? What's a decision you made then that you would never make now?

Answer here, and you may well see your answer on the TED Blog on Monday.

And read more about Blakemore's work here:



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    Sep 14 2012: When I was a teenager, I needed a lot of attention. This meant having bright blue hair and wearing the most outlandish things I could find -- bonus points if it was sparkly. I once found a very '80s wedding dress in a thrift shop ... and wore it to school. It definitely took me until my 20s to realized I shined for being an interesting, smart, kind person rather than becoming a caricature.

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