I’m pretty sure I was actually at this TEDxManchester talk: it was a few years ago and the presenter’s doubtlessly done it many times, but it stands out to me. Actually, it stands out most for the opening 90 seconds or so. Among all the other things that Carrie Green discusses in her talk, I took away the very first point about just doing something.
We are all remarkably hesitant about things we don’t know, experiences we haven’t had and about how we will appear to others. About whether we will cope with something. I can’t put words into Green’s mouth but what I believe she’s saying is that the time we spend hesitating is wasted and the fact that we hesitate blocks us from things we would enjoy.
Plus, if we then don’t enjoy them, we’ve got ‘me over with quickly instead of stewing about it.
Have a look at her whole talk but especially the opening minute and a half or so.
So there’s this fella named Stefan Sagmeister, right, and every seven years he closes his design business for the next 12 months. The obvious first thought is that this is nice for him, a second obvious thought is that you hope it’s nice for his staff if he has any – he’s not all that clear on this point – and maybe a third obvious thought is that this idea is bloody expensive.
I suspect that last, least, most unlikely obvious thought is that you’ll do this too or that you could do it too. Still, he’s very convincing about the benefits and actually rather convincing about the necessity too. Enough so that it’s making me wonder whether I’d benefit from closing my business for a minute.
I’m British and I’ve been a journalist: I don’t know from positive thinking. And the moment you tell me to smile and how this means the population of the planet will grin inanely back at me, I’m looking to see what you’re selling or how I can get away from you.
You know there’s a but coming.
I’m not sure there is, though. I would like this to be a but. I think for me it might just be peeking out above an “Ye-ess?”
We believe that we should work to be happy, but could that be backwards? In this fast-moving and entertaining talk, psychologist Shawn Achor argues that actually happiness inspires productivity. (Filmed at TEDxBloomington.)
And here is that video. See what you think, would you?