5 best Ted Talks for finding your purpose

Check out our favorite Ted Talks about purpose, life and finding your passion.

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We love learning about and encouraging others to find and pursue a purposeful life. While we do believe that having the energy and mental function to do this begins on a cellular level, we also understand that – beyond cell health – there are everyday steps and processes people need to go through to create a life that is meaningful to them. Whether you’re trying to figure out your purpose or are looking to start a new chapter, these are our favorite Ted Talks when it comes to learning about life optimization and purposeful living.

How to know your life purpose in 5 minutes

Producer, executive and distributor Adam Leipzig has simplified the art of figuring out your purpose into a 5-step life purpose exercise. In his experience, people who know their life purpose tend to know five things about themselves:

  • Who they are
  • What they do
  • Who they do things for
  • What others want and need
  • What they get out of what they do

In this video, he’ll guide you through how to figure out these steps for yourself.

The unexamined life is not worth living. But if all you’re doing is examining, you’re not living.
Adam Leipzig Producer, executive and distributor

2 questions to uncover your passion and turn it into a career

Is passion only for the rich or retired? Social entrepreneur Noeline Kirabo asks this question and concludes: no, it’s not. These are the two questions she uses to help youth in Uganda turn their passions into successful career pathways.

  1. If you had all the money in the world, what would you spend your time doing?
  2. What truly makes you happy, or gives you a deep sense of fulfillment?

To dive deeper into her process of creating a purposeful career, watch her Ted Talk.

In unlocking potential, we need to look inward to identify the things that give us a deep sense of fulfillment. The things that give us the deepest joy. And then weave them into the patterns of our daily routines.
Noeline Kirabo social entrepreneur

If you want to achieve your goals, don't focus on them

How do you achieve your goals? According to Former Denver Broncos running back Reggie Rivers, you achieve them by not focusing on them. Instead, he encourages you to focus on your behavior, because that’s what’s within your control. Watch this video to learn about the steps he takes to focus his behavior so that he can get closer to reaching his goals.

I know that if I focus on my behaviors day after day, I keep myself motivated day after day.
Reggie Rivers Former Denver Broncos running back

How to figure out what you really want

Career coach and author Ashley Stahl has drawn on a harrowing personal experience to create a positive approach to figuring out what you want in life. Her process includes:

  1. Do a self-audit
  2. Follow what feels good
  3. Take action

Watch her Ted Talk to learn what these steps involve.

No matter where you are in your life right now, you have the opportunity to make a U-turn.
Ashley Stahl career coach & author

5 steps to designing the life you want

Executive director of Stanford’s design program, Bill Burnett, explains how he (in collaboration with co-founder Dave Evans) has created Stanford’s “Life Design Lab”: a program that helps you “figure out what you want to grow into next”. In this Ted Talk, he summarizes the 5 steps that are used within the program to help people design the lives they want:

  1. Connect the dots between what you believe, what you do and who you are
  2. Remember: circumstances and problems are two different things
  3. Ideate the multiple ideas you have for your future
  4. Prototype your life design
  5. Choose well

To learn about how you can utilize these steps to design the life you want to live, watch the full video.

Get curious, talk to people and try stuff and you will design a well-lived and joyful life.
Bill Burnett Executive director of Stanford’s design program

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