TED Conversations

Kimberly Ann

Program Manager, Atienza Kali

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What is your biggest fear?

What is your biggest fear? Why? What have you done to over come it?

Topics: Hope fear life

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  • Aug 9 2013: Today, I watched President Obama being interviewed yesterday by Jay Leno.

    My biggest fear?
    The American Dream of Hard Work and Get Ahead has been lost.

    I watched as my biggest fear was made into a reality with one Obama lie.

    What have I done to over-come it?
    I have spoken out harshly concerning our government's secret surveillances
    of American citizens. I have labeled such, as illegal practices, done in complete
    disregard of both protections of the 1st and 4th amendments to our constitution.

    I herein beg TED to sponsor a conversation to air this subject completely.
    • Sep 4 2013: Why would you think the American dream is of hard work and get ahead? Most people do not dream of hard work, they dream of an easier life, many other things like laughter, love, freedom, travel, sports and freedom from pain or hunger. They dream of being free from worrying about or working to take care of others, freedom from sickness and harassment by governments or religions or neighbors or family members.

      Business, government and religions have imposed so many strictures on people's lives that many of us do not have time to dream of anything at all.

      Children dream of being part of a play group, eating good things, owning things, pleasures and amusements and of the right and ability to rest and to sleep comfortably. They do not dream of hard work, but of accomplishment and the rewards, including self-esteem, that come from accomplishment, but if they are able to accomplish things easily, that's fine.

      I dream of never having to fill out forms like insurance policy questionnaires and income taxes and anything else that disturbs my thoughts or the work I choose to do. I dream of having enough energy to take care of the people and things I am or feel I am responsible for and still having enough time and creative energy to do what I love doing. Painting and writing and viewing this gorgeous world we live in all lights and weathers.

      I think the true American dream is freedom from interference, and is expressed not only in wanting to be kings and queens of our own "castles" but of our space within culture.
      Americans want the freedom which the American Indians actually had when the colonists came here. Religion was not imposed on them. No one told them when to eat or hunt or pray or dance.

      Obama is trying to do his job. Your American dream was lost for average Americans under Bush.
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        Sep 5 2013: I think many people dream of working hard at meaningful work, regardless of nationality, and having the gratifying feeling of accomplishment that derives from it. Mihalyi Czikzentmihalii's talk about "flow" focuses on this idea of compelling connection to the process rather than only the outcome of work..

        Martin Seligman's talk on positive psychology supports this as well, while also supporting with research people's gratification in autonomy and in being challenged.

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