7 TED Talks That Will Make You More Productive

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Ted Talks; there’s a TED talk to suit every topic you’ve probably ever thought of and maybe a few you haven’t.

When you’re trying to make the most of your time, anything that can help you push through your own BS and keep you focused on your goals, dreams and living life on your own terms is worth exploring.

If you’re wondering how you can find the time to work on your side hustle or you need a bit of inspiration for stepping up your productivity, these TED talks are a must see.

Invest a little time, learn something new and even have a laugh or two.

TED Talks for Inspiring Productivity

Arianna Huffington – How to Succeed? Get More Sleep (4:10)

This one is very close to my heart. I’ve struggled with sleep issues for a number of years now. Not specifically because I’ve chosen to prioritise other activities over getting a good night’s sleep but due to stress. In this talk, Arianna also shares her own experience of what happens when you let sleep drop to the bottom of your priority list.

Arianna has also written an excellent book on sleep; The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time which I highly recommend.


Jason Fried – Why Work Doesn’t Happen at Work (15:21)

Jason Fried has a radical theory of working: that the office isn’t a good place to do it.

If you’ve ever worked in an office, I guarantee you’ll recognise every situation he describes. Jason’s experiences and examples certainly echoed my own frustrations of working in an open plan office.

As Jason says, “You cannot ask somebody to be creative in 15 minutes and really think about a problem.” If you’re planning on building your side hustle quickly and efficiently you need to be aware of the distractions you’re dealing with wherever you choose to do your work. If distractions are getting in the way of you achieving your goals, check out Jason’s TED talk.

Paolo Cardini: Forget multi-tasking, try monotasking (2:52)

Shawn Achor – The Happy Secret to Better Work (12:20)

Even if your life is perfect, you need to watch Shawn’s TED talk – it’s hilarious. Shawn’s rapid-fire delivery is more like a stand-up comedian than that of an accomplished psychologist.

Shawn’s talk has had over 14 million views and is one of the most popular TED talks of all time.

Watch it and you’ll see why.

Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action (17:57)

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership — starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers …

Angela Lee Duckworth – Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance (6:12)

Grit. It’s one of those words that sounds like it means. According to researcher and psychologist Angela Lee Duckworth, grit is ultimately what gets us to our goals. It is the ability to keep sight of the bigger picture, regardless of the obstacles thrown your way.

Grit, not intelligence or talent, is most likely to see you achieve what you want in life.

Nigel Marsh – How to Make Work/Life Balance Work (9:57)

Work-life balance, says Nigel Marsh, is too important to be left in the hands of your employer.

If we don’t, then the world will set them for us.

Do you live to work or work to live? Which is more important to you; your life or your work? These are questions we don’t often take the time to ask ourselves. We just tend to go with the flow.

In this TED talk, Nigel shares his journey to a better work/life balance. He’s also written a book about his experience: Fat, Forty, and Fired: One Man’s Frank, Funny, and Inspiring Account of Losing His Job, which is an entertaining read. 

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  • Start a blogBlogging is a great way to create additional income. I make semi-passive income each and every month from my blogs and you can, too. Use my guide to create your own blog and you can start your blog for as little as the cost of a latte per month. Plus, sign up through my link and you get a free domain name.
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  • You can find more recommended resources here: Blogging Resources.

Suggested Reading




Your Turn…

What other TED talks would you recommend for increasing productivity?

>7 TED talks that will make you more productive


  1. Thank you for compiling this useful info. Arianna has always been top source of information and I’ve actually watched this Ted talk of hers. It’s so refreshing to watch it again.