At CN&CO we love the ideas, connections, and inspirations that we get from watching TED Talks. We use TED to expand our thinking, you can check out the weekly TED Tuesday blog series to see some of our favourite talks. Back in 2015 we launched our ConFab sessions and had the opportunity to learn from those around us. We enjoyed wide ranging discussions and the sessions bought people together from a variety of professions, walks of life and with differing points of view. Well our Confabs have evolved and we now have the opportunity to host our own TED Circles.

On the 15th of May 2020, we hosted our third TED Circles. It’s great to be part of the greater TED circles community as it continues to grow – in April TED Circles had 254 active hosts with approximately 4500 guests joining circles around the globe. This platform is truly amazing and it encourages us to collaborate with those around us (both far and near). While writing this blog, I was reminded about the TED live session that we hosted last year (2019) where a small group of us gathered to watch a few TED talks from TED 2019 which was held under the theme of “Bigger Than Us”.

CN&CO hosting TED Circles on the 15th of May 2020.
Our TED Circles crew

Each month TED Circle hosts are asked to align the discussion and the selection of the talk to be watched/discussed under a theme – this month the theme was “Life at its fullest”, an apt theme for the current circumstance and one that may have been on many people’s minds of late. In the pursuit of living life to the fullest there are many things that we need to consider and the this talk, “There is more to life than being happy”, by Emily Esfahani Smith sheds light on difference between meaning and happiness.

“We are authors of our own stories”.

Emily challenges us to rethink the desire to be happy and outlines the four pillars of meaning – useful concepts to get you thinking about your own narrative and what it is that you truly value. “Having meaning gives you something to hold on to”.

  1. Belonging
  2. Purpose
  3. Transcendence
  4. Story telling

The discussion in the circles was wide ranging – all the attendees contributed with fascinating insights and views that enriched the conversation. Below I have outlined a few of the ones that stood out for me.

  • Purpose – in her TED Talk, Emily spoke about how purpose is what you give and the strength to serve others. Brands, businesses and individuals continuously seek to find their purpose, this is an interesting WARC article that you may enjoy.
  • How we think about fullness – as we move through life we have experiences that contribute to ‘filling’ up our lives. Growing our knowledge and enriching our understanding, from time to time though we may need to let all the water out of the bucket and replenish it with fresh insights and experiences as we continue to grow. There is something extremely powerful about this analogy – letting water out to allow fresh water to flow in…
  • Practicing gratitude – I won’t define or outline this – instead apply your mind and ask yourself if you are practicing gratitude.
  • Keeping things simple. In a growing digital age, we can be driven to add complexity to things where it doesn’t really need to be. Joan Middleton shared this kids book and how it reminded her to keep things simple, Have You Filled a Bucket Today? 

At the end of the get together, I encouraged us all to remember to give a little more. The current circumstances may indeed be tough and people are focusing inward (it’s a natural protection mechanism after all), but we need to remember the power of giving and energy that can be released from working together towards making the world a better place.

Join us for our next TED Circles get together on the 18th of June 2020, RSVP here.

TED Circles hosted by CN&CO