These 20 TED Talks for personal growth, will empower and inspire you. To be the best version of you. That you were meant to be!

Where do you want to succeed in your life? No matter where we start out, we all want to be smarter, learn, grow and improve our lives. Whether you’re looking to be more confident, mindful, happier, successful, less stressed or more motivated. Then there is a TED for you. Here are the 20 most inspiring TED Talks for personal growth.

1. My Year of Saying Yes to Everything by Shonda Rhimes

Shonda Rhimes is the powerhouse behind Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder and in this TED Talk she takes you through how she transformed her life and her biggest fears by saying “Yes”, instead of “No”.

She speaks from heart about being the stresses of managing work and family life. With the crux being that, though she was on her life purpose and loving her work, she felt burnout out and knew she needed to change.  She needed to bring back authentic inspiration, what she calls her “hum”, back into her life.

Shonda’s talk was inspired by her best selling novel “The Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person” find it here.


2. Speak More Confidently: How to Speak Up for Yourself by Adam Galinsky

For many people speaking up is hard to do, even when you know it’s the right thing to do. In this TED talk, Adam Galinsky, a social psychologist, guides you on how to assert yourself, navigate awkward social situations and step into your own personal power.


3. “Why We All Need To Practice Emotional First Aid” by Guy Winch

On any given day life can be a roller coaster of emotions. While positive ones can make our day, the negative ones can take their toll. Impacting our mental and physical health and our relationships with others.

Guy Winch believes that too many of us deal with our emotional issues on our own, and makes the case for emotional hygiene and emotional intelligence. By learning how to practice our emotions and take care of them with the same diligence that we take care of our physical bodies. One of our all time favorite TED talks for personal development and growth.

His book “Emotional First Aid: Healing Rejection, Guilt, Failure, and Other Everyday Hurts” can be found here.


4. How to Stop Screwing Yourself Over by Mel Robbins

Mel Robbins is a force of nature! In this TED Talk, Robbins uses her no-nonsense approach to cut through the fluff and take you right to the heart of the issue. Sharing useful personal development tips on how to better our lives by changing the way we think and act. She believes that the key to a rewarding life lies beyond our reluctant feelings and ingrained routines. She urges us to take control of our lives, turn our brains off autopilot and leave our comfort zones.

“It’s your job to make yourself do the crap you don’t wanna do, so you can be EVERYTHING that you’re supposed to be.” – Mel Robbins

Find her best selling book “The 5-second Rule” here.


5.  All It Takes is 10 Mindful Minutes by Andy Puddicombe

This TED Talk for personal growth opens with a few compelling questions…When is the last time you did nothing for 10 whole minutes? Not texting, talking or even thinking?

Mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe describes the transformative power of doing just that. By simply just, refreshing your mind for 10 minutes a day and practicing mindfulness. No need for incense or uncomfortable positions,  just experiencing the present moment as it is.


6. The Power of Believing That You Can Improve by Carol Dweck

Carol Dweck researches “growth mindset”, the idea that we can grow our brain’s capacity to learn and to solve problems. In this TED talk, she describes two ways to think about a problem that’s slightly too hard for you to solve. One are you not smart enough to solve it … or two have you just not solved it yet?

Many people stop themselves from their greatest potential simply because they assume that they can’t do it so why even try? There is a fine line believing that you can do something, that you have the intelligence to do it or not. Carol Dweck asserts that if you can just start believing, then you can improve in anything you try. A great introduction to the idea that we all have the capacity to tap into our “growth mindset” and our brain’s capacity to learn and solve problems.

7. Why Thinking Your Ugly is Bad For You by Meaghan Ramsey

About 10,000 people a month Google the phrase, “Am I ugly?” Meaghan Ramsey believes that many of them are young girls.  When we see a baby, we know that it is perfect and beautiful the way it is. So what happens to make us think otherwise?

In an age of social media, being evaluated by our appearances, comparison truly is the thief of joy. This constant exposure leads to low body and image confidence. Leading to some serious consequences. From lower grade point averages to greater risk-taking with drugs and alcohol. But not to despair, in this TED Talk, Meaghan also shares the keys things all of us can do to disrupt this reality and move forward in a healthy and more loving way.

8. Say Your Truths and Seek Them in Others by Elizabeth Lesser

A captivating and unexpectedly funny talk with a heavy subject matter. Watch as Elizabeth Lesser describes the healing process of putting aside pride and defensiveness to make way for soul-baring and truth-telling in our relationships with others.  She says, “You don’t have to wait for a life-or-death situation to clean up the relationships that matter to you, be like a new kind of first responder, the one to take the first courageous step toward the other.”

Beside her great TED Talk for personal growth, Elizabeth Lesser’s book “Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow” landed  on our list of the 101 Best Books Self Help Books of All time. You can also find her book directly on amazon here.


9. The Art of Being Yourself by Caroline McHugh

A fascinating TED Talk on the art of being yourself. Caroline McHugh explains how our perceptions of ourselves differ from how others perceive us. Stating that you’re not your thoughts because you think them. And you can’t be your feelings, because otherwise who’s the you that feels them? We are not what we do, who you love or who loves you, there is something greater and deeper underneath it all.

Watch this one anytime you need a reminder of how brilliant and beautiful you are.


10. Try something new for 30 days by Matt Cutts

I absolutely love this concept! And personally believe that one of the keys to personal growth and success is when we switch up our stale routines and get out of our comfort zones.

In this TED Talk, Matt Cutts explains how breaking our patterns can improve our lives. With benefits like more energy, improved self esteem and confidence in every area of your life.  Is there something you’ve always wanted to do, but have been putting off? Try it for 30 days and see what you think. You just might be surprised what happens next.


11. The Power Of Vulnerability by Brené Brown

Brené Brown studies human connection and believes that our moments of vulnerability are actually wonderful opportunities for growth and self-love. In this poignant, TED talk, she shares deep insight from her research. As well as, her own personal quest to know herself and better understand humanity. She’s says, that yes, we are imperfect and wired for struggle, but also worthy of love and belonging.

“You either walk inside your story and own it or you stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness.” — Brené Brown

Brené Brown is the author of several best selling books find her book “The Gifts of Imperfection” here.


12. Programming Your Mind for Success by Carrie Green

Carrie Green started her first online business at the age of 20, while studying Law at the University of Birmingham. Within a few years she took the business global and in 2011 launched the Female Entrepreneur Association. In this inspiring TED talk she shares her struggles along the way. What she learned and how you too can to program your mind for success. Learn her tips on how to fight fear, overcome obstacles and motivate yourself to reach your goals and dreams.


13. The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong by Amy Morin

We all have the  ability to grow ourselves and build mental strength. Yet most of us have never learn how.  Spending more time focusing on our physical strength and health.  With much less on building our mental strength and mental health.

In this TED Talk for personal growth and development, Amy shares that there are three basic factors of mental strength, and we can choose to perform specific exercises to nurture them. Leaving us better able to manage our thoughts and emotions, and behave productively whatever our circumstances may be. No matter what your goals are, building mental strength is key reaching your highest potential.

Amy’s bestselling book, “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do” is available here.


14. The Surprising Science of Happiness by Dan Gilbert

Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert, explains why most of us lack results in our lifelong pursuit of happiness. In his TED Talk, he uses psychology and neuroscience to prove that, yes,  we can be happy. Even if and when, everything goes totally wrong. Gilbert also suggests that getting what you want in life can give you the same amount of happiness as not getting it at all.

Find Dan Gilbert’s bestselling book “Stumbling on Happiness” here.


15. Listening To Shame by Brené Brown

Shame can be crippling and the secret behind many forms of broken behavior including – addiction, depression, violence, suicide and eating disorders. After studying shame for six years, Brene says that while guilt is the feeling that we did something bad, shame is the feeling or belief that we are bad. Watch as she explores what can happen when people confront their shame head-on, with self-compassion and empathy.

Get Brene’s best selling book on Amazon here > “I Thought It Was Just Me” here.


16. How To Build Your Creative Confidence by David Kelley

Is your school or workplace divided into “creatives” versus practical people? David Kelley believes that creativity is not the domain of only a chosen few but a natural part of all of us. He suggests that we were all creative as children until we faced criticism and judgement. Not feeling good enough, becoming fearful in the process. He encourages use to move through those phobias and offers ways to build confidence and embrace our creativity.

David’s book “Creative Confidence: Unleashing The Creative Potential Within Us All” is available here.


17. Choose Yourself by James Altucher

James Altucher is a bestselling author, serial entrepreneur, comedian and the host of one of my favourite podcasts for personal growth and development. What I love about James is his sense of curiosity, humour and directness.

In this brutally honest talk, he reveals how at one point failure led him to consider suicide, and how he turned his life around by following five key practices everyday.  Physical health and how you move every day, your emotional health like being around supportive people, spiritual health and gratitude, challenging yourself to capture your brilliance, and finally, giving without expectation.

“If you don’t make the choices in your own life, then someone else is going to end up making them for you, and it won’t be good.” – James Altucher

Find James bestselling book “Choose Yourself” here.


18. Your Elusive Creative Genius by Elizabeth Gilbert

In this TED Talk, the international bestselling author of “Eat, Pray, Love”  Elizabeth Gilbert, shares her thoughts and challenges you to change the way you think about creative genius. She explores the impossible expectations we have on artists, geniuses and the creative process. Arguing that genius isn’t in fact rare, that all of us have a genius inside of us. 

Find Elizabeth’s book “Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear” here.


Why do some people succeed while others fail? Are they smarter or luckier than others? In this candid TED Talk, Richard St. John reminds us that success not a destination but a constant journey. Using the story of his own business’ rise and fall to illustrate the value of persistence and that when we stop trying, we fail.


20. Why We Do What We Do by Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins is a powerhouse and master of all things personal growth. In this TED Talk, he shares the “invisible forces” that motivate everyone’s actions. He challenges you to question those invisible forces and question why you do what you do.

Find Tony’s bestselling book on Amazon here > “Awaken the Giant Within”.

At the end of the day…

Life can get rough. We all face challenges and everyone makes mistakes. What’s important is what you do when that happens. Watching a TED talk is a great way to develop yourself. To grow, learn and motivate yourself to move past your fears. Past any lingering negativity and stay on track for reaching your own personal goals.

So anytime you’re in need of some serious inspiration be sure to turn on one of these inspiring TED Talks for personal growth. You’ll be happy you did!

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