TED Conversations

Jordan Reeves

TED-Ed Community Manager, TED Conferences


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What is the most important thing you've learned on your own?

In three sentences, explain something that you've learned without being told by another person -- something you've figured out all by yourself. Here's an example:

"I learned how to paint with water colors by reading a book and searching for YouTube videos. It took me a while, but I figured out some techniques that really work for me. I'm not an expert yet, but I have discovered a real joy in painting."

It can be anything -- a practical skill (like painting) or a knowledge set (like how to use mathematics).


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  • Feb 25 2013: The most important thing that I have learned on my own is to 'do' rather than contemplate.

    Set a goal..the smaller the better..And just from the moment I decide it,I should start thinking and working on it. It can be anything-making sure that the dress I have to wear for a party is ready on time,that I take prescribed medicines regularly,that the dance skit I am preparing should be done well,schedule and do my studies in an organised fashion..I must really highlight these things in my mind and say to myself-it is important I respect it and try to do it well.

    The MOST important thing underlying all these different activities is the fact that all of them should be seen as a part of my 'Karma'-things that I am supposed to do. I shouldn't feel a huge sense of achievement after doing them. Doing the things I do properly should become a routine. Like I eat,I bathe daily,they should be taken as chores that are part of my daily life.

    Also,I must clearly see the end goal and form a connection with it. For ex-while preparing the dance,I must really visualise the entire thing on stage and want from the deepest bottom for it to go well.

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