Mohanapriya Rajasekaran

Human Resource Management - Student, School of Management, University of Southampton, UK

This conversation is closed.

All of us can make a difference..and here is how! "Small community talks"

I am sure all of us have an urge to make a difference and bring a change to the community by some means and hence we are part of this respected and resourceful TED community!

But how far have we gone to bring about change that we want to see in people around us, our neighbours, our friends, colleagues, our community etc. Be it anything from sharing your experience that should teach someone a lesson to influence people to live a healthier life to educate underprivileged children around us or to make someone a better person.

Being a TED Speaker is probably the best possible way to reach millions of people. But to positively change and influence our closest ones in our community or circle, all it takes is an idea and a voice!

Share that one most important thing that you want to share with your community that can make a difference in their life.

(This idea is truly inspired by the whole idea of TED! The rich and thoughtful knowledge it imparts in its viewers effectively)

  • thumb
    Jan 9 2013: I would want to share how changing a few small things in the course of a day can have such a profound effect. The idea that if everyone in my community took a shorter shower would save X amount of gallons of water every year for example. I think sometimes the issues we encounter seem overwhelming, but bringing those issues to a local level and showing people how these small changes could change things would be an awesome way to reach out.
    • thumb
      Jan 9 2013: Even a small positive change will have a big impact.. Thats one reason behind this idea.. Good luck to you.. Wish you find a way to reach out to people effectively! :)
  • Jan 8 2013: It's a nice idea to have a community talk. Smaller will be more effective I guess as it will be more personal. But how can we set up a platform that people do take seriously. For example if I want people to understand the importance of following lane rules in traffic or something as simple as that, how can I reach out.

    As these are facts which are obvious but not much followed in many places around the world, the person trying to drive home the point gets brushed away. i know TED's a serious platform but not so much for the underprivileged who find it hard to survive.

    Let me know if you have any ideas on this.
    • thumb
      Jan 8 2013: I guess the whole point of TED getting the videos translated in all possible languages is to reach people in all corners of the world.. If you find any video you want to share with someone (Who you think may not have access to TED) you can download it and play it to them i guess...

      On Following traffic rules - That's a good point but could be very challenging to put it across. But if you can bring to notice of those people all the dangers they may face for not following rules, it can work to some extent.. Even if one in ten buys it.. its good right?? I think awareness of the danger is what is missing!

      But I appreciate your thoughts on wanting to bring a change.. Good luck with it!
  • thumb
    Jan 8 2013: Probably I would emphasize courage, encourage people to be more courageous in their lives. Have the courage to be different, think for yourself, ask a new and different question, reach out to someone new, stand up for a difficult cause.
    • thumb
      Jan 8 2013: Well said... Courage to stand against wrong or to be different should be nurtured by parents and teachers from a very young age, isn't it? But nothing is too late... I guess where there is a will there is a way :) ... I hope you are able to influence at least a hand full of people with your thoughts!
  • thumb
    Jan 9 2013: Yeah, per your comment below, I was trying to figure out where courage comes from. I don't know if it comes from parents, or teachers, or from within.

    For me, courage has something to do with self-esteem. It's valuing your thoughts enough to stick with them even when the going is difficult.

    It has something to do with self-respect. Many times in life I have to choose between doing the more courageous thing and the less courageous thing, and I always choose the first one. Because I would dislike myself if I chose the other.

    It has to do with a desire to grow. Usually I find that the situations that offer the most chance for growth are the same ones that take courage. It makes sense, that the things that are difficult for you will also be the things that help you grow.

    I have found that it's easier to be courageous if you have information, knowledge. Any time you choose a difficult position, it really helps to know a lot about the subject area where you have chosen your position.

    I have found that to be courageous you have to be able to handle rejection. Many times I choose the courageous path, and I have to suffer a lot of criticism or outright rejection. But it's okay, I'm still alive. It's true, sometimes I get rejected, but more often I have enormous success.

    Mohanapriya, those are some of my ideas about courage. Do you consider yourself a courageous person? Why, or why not? What are some specific areas where you show courage? Where do you think courage comes from?
    • thumb
      Jan 9 2013: Yes I do consider myself a courageous person, I have always stood for the right things, Like I have supported many causes for empowerment of women and demonstrated against child labour (Although at small levels), all these needs some form of courage to go out in public and give our your views that you believe is right. This courage may be because of having valid information or knowledge like you said.

      But there are some things I am not courageous enough to do - Like swimming in deep waters or driving a motor bike on busy roads (although I learnt both, fear always stopped me from proceeding). I rem as a young girl my mother would never allow me near water or never let me drive a bicycle as she was over protective. There was a lack of support from her on these aspects because of which I was unable to overcome these fears in later years. This is why I felt, when you are young your parents or teachers do to some level inculcate courage.
      • thumb
        Jan 9 2013: Thanks Mohanapriya. I'm glad you feel courageous, I had been worried that you did not. I too have marched in a demonstration to make the streets safe at night here in my hometown. It was initiated by the YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association), yet many, many men marched, including the chief of police and the mayor.

        Your mother may have done a good thing by discouraging you from swimming in deep waters or riding a motorbike on busy streets. It is good to be courageous, but both those things sound a little dangerous. One can take courage too far.

        Yeah, I'm still not convinced it's your parents who inculcate it. Because then we have to ask why certain parents inculcate it, and certain don't?
  • Jan 9 2013: Good point Paul Kirhagis. You nailed the topic I was pondering about.
    But again I believe rather than talks alone being quantifiable is an aspect which is easily understood.

    For e.g. in this case if we put up a noticeable LED display of how much water one has consumed (showing dollar costs or gallons consumed) and then making them realize how a slight change in habits can amount to something significant.

    in fact putting up displays of pollution data in cities, printing costs in offices etc. can amount to a great deal of awareness as we have solid data backing our case.

    Personally I think a good idea with data to support it's grounds is highly favorable to achieve positive effects.
    • thumb
      Jan 9 2013: Thats a awesome thought.. a simple and practical solution for creating awareness on material consumption!!