playlist

Talks that'll inspire you to unplug

At the beck and call of your technology's beeps and buzzes? Let these talks inspire you to step back from your screen and engage with the immediate world around you.

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  1. 15:37
    Pico Iyer The art of stillness

    The place that travel writer Pico Iyer would most like to go? Nowhere. In a counterintuitive and lyrical meditation, Iyer takes a look at the incredible insight that comes with taking time for stillness. In our world of constant movement and distraction, he teases out strategies we all can use to take back a few minutes out of every day, or a few days out of every season. It's the talk for anyone who feels overwhelmed by the demands for our world.

  2. 9:29
    Adam Alter Why our screens make us less happy

    What are our screens and devices doing to us? Psychologist Adam Alter studies how much time screens steal from us and how they're getting away with it. He shares why all those hours you spend staring at your smartphone, tablet or computer might be making you miserable — and what you can do about it.

  3. 12:01
    Abha Dawesar Life in the "digital now"

    One year ago, Abha Dawesar was living in blacked-out Manhattan post-Sandy, scrounging for power to connect. As a novelist, she was struck by this metaphor: Have our lives now become fixated on the drive to digitally connect, while we miss out on what's real?

  4. 14:55
    Tristan Harris How better tech could protect us from distraction

    How often does technology interrupt us from what we really mean to be doing? At work and at play, we spend a startling amount of time distracted by pings and pop-ups — instead of helping us spend our time well, it often feels like our tech is stealing it away from us. Design thinker Tristan Harris offers thoughtful new ideas for technology that creates more meaningful interaction. He asks: "What does the future of technology look like when you're designing for the deepest human values?"

  5. 19:48
    Sherry Turkle Connected, but alone?

    As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other? Sherry Turkle studies how our devices and online personas are redefining human connection and communication — and asks us to think deeply about the new kinds of connection we want to have.

  6. 11:52
    Kio Stark Why you should talk to strangers

    "When you talk to strangers, you're making beautiful interruptions into the expected narrative of your daily life — and theirs," says Kio Stark. In this delightful talk, Stark explores the overlooked benefits of pushing past our default discomfort when it comes to strangers and embracing those fleeting but profoundly beautiful moments of genuine connection.

  7. 18:12
    Srikumar Rao Plug into your hard-wired happiness

    We all strive for happiness — but we spend most of our lives learning to be unhappy, says Srikumar Rao. In this practical talk, he teaches how to break free of the "I'd be happy if ..." mental model, and embrace our hard-wired happiness.

  8. 18:55
    Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi Flow, the secret to happiness

    Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi asks, "What makes a life worth living?" Noting that money cannot make us happy, he looks to those who find pleasure and lasting satisfaction in activities that bring about a state of "flow."