Are you looking to feel motivated from the seat of your own couch? Better yet, are you a fan of TED Talks? This is not your next subscribed list of bullshit. We are living in extraordinarily truthful times; everything being unveiled, everything under the microscope. Among all the glory and chaos in the wake of our new decade, societies have made remarkable progress. A major social change noticeably underway is the equal representation of different groups of people, women in particular. In support of the increasingly prevalent community of female power, we have curated a short, concise list recommending TED Talks by influential women from diverse lines of work. And they all contain a powerful take-home message. Hence, the absence of bullshit.
Is that f-word still running amok? What does it even mean to be a ‘feminist’ these days? In a compelling argument, Adichie fools some of us by the title of her TED Talk for she hints no biases towards women rights as we may presume, but rather – favoring everyone. Adichie unites all the forces in one room as she commences with her personal examples of growing up in a culture that is quite far behind in gender equality. And she does it with such slicing wit and charisma. Her conclusion ultimately brings many of us back down to earth through a humbling fall.
Even with little to no background or interest in academic research, we may find Kanze as pleasantly uncomplicated as her own research methodology applied in explaining the main reason for why businesswomen are still receiving less financial support, compared to their male counterparts. In this structured, smooth escalation of proposed explanations, Kanze argues that the underlying mechanism has been played out by a classic psychological understanding, and the plain issue is ironically not that obvious to most people in the business. However, with new awareness comes great power. We may certainly apply the essential message of Kanze’s research to think, act, and speak more positively when we are under attack.
Mora stands out as a unique speaker within this list due to her rich Spanish background but, more importantly, her target audience – working mothers. As she reflects deeply, and gratefully, on growing up with a strong CEO-mother, Mora speaks on behalf of children worldwide with whom have mothers who are torn between parenting and doing the job in which they absolutely love. Indeed, no love is greater than that between a parent and his or her child – but also it is okay to be physically absent during some parts of your child’s life for the purpose of fulfilling a career that you are passionate about. In fact, it is in turn that your son or daughter will not only understand, but they will learn to be just as ambitious and hard-working as adults because they observed their (model) parent.
Sit at the table. That’s one thing most women seem to avoid. But it is not in a cafe, not at parties. Rather, it’s mostly in the workplace. As COO of Facebook, Sandberg delivers three valuable advice aimed mainly for businesswomen who strive to advance within their own company. Why any person should engage in this Ted Talk led by a woman, who has surely felt it all on her journey to the top, is in due part to discovering one of her contradicting moments, which we can resonate with because we have likely done the same. In other words, Sandberg confesses a story that collectively reflects how sometimes our own actions can contradict with what we advocate for, or believe in – without us realizing much that we did it.
Women, women, women! It’s all we like to talk about? Or would you have, complain? Sometimes any of us can become so passionate about fighting for what we believe in that we lose sight of the bigger picture. Better yet, we aim too high in the clouds that we need to, eventually, become grounded. In a truly remarkable talk in itself, Hall points out that by emphasizing the idea of a female presence in any given situation can actually demean the value of what we want, which in this case is fair representation for all. As Hall should have it, rather let’s not point out how many women are present. But how many skill sets do we have onboard.
To top it all off – or rather to laugh it all off – Gay’s endearing and hilarious talk moves us out of the dark times. It is very much a human flaw to contradict ourselves and Gay is a leading example as she calls out on her own bullshit, while taking down everyone else as well. But we just don’t know it ourselves (yet). She has a distinctive feminist image but it is her modest soul to mock her own flaws that make us all wonder do we know what we ourselves are even talking about sometimes?