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Must Watch: TED Talks for IWD

Posted on 08 March 2017

In the spirit of celebrating International Women's Day, we've curated a list of TED Talks by women, that inspire us. Pour yourself a glass of wine, put your feet up and let these talks make you laugh, inspire courage, touch your hearts and fire you up, as much as they did for us. #BeBoldForChange

1.  On the Genius of Creativity: If you're a tortured artist, you'll love this!

Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person "being" a genius, all of us "have" a genius. It's a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk.

2. On Overcoming Adversity: Think you've got problems? 

"I have cerebral palsy. I shake all the time," Maysoon Zayid announces at the beginning of this exhilarating, hilarious talk. (Really, it's hilarious.) "I'm like Shakira meets Muhammad Ali." With grace and wit, the Arab-American comedian takes us on a whistle-stop tour of her adventures as an actress, stand-up comic, philanthropist and advocate for the disabled.

3. On Having Hard Conversations: Courageous and so funny.

In this touching talk, Ash Beckham offers a fresh approach to empathy and openness. It starts with understanding that everyone, at some point in their life, has experienced hardship. The only way out, says Beckham, is to open the door and step out of your closet.

4. On Success: Why do ambitious women have flat heads?

Dame Stephanie Shirley is the most successful tech entrepreneur you never heard of. In the 1960s, she founded a pioneering all-woman software company in the UK, which was ultimately valued at $3 billion, making millionaires of 70 of her team members. In this frank and often hilarious talk, she explains why she went by “Steve,” how she upended the expectations of the time, and shares some sure-fire ways to identify ambitious women …

5. On Tales of Passion: "Only a fearless and determined heart will get the gold."

Author and activist Isabel Allende discusses women, creativity, the definition of feminism — and, of course, passion.

6. On Facing Cultural Rigidity: How to transform shit into fuel.

Professional Arab women juggle more responsibilities than their male counterparts, and they face more cultural rigidity than Western women. What can their success teach us about tenacity, competition, priorities and progress? Tracing her career as an engineer, advocate and mother in Abu Dhabi, Leila Hoteit shares three lessons for thriving in the modern world.

7. On Making Your Own Rules: Building magical bamboo houses in Bali

You've never seen buildings like this. The stunning bamboo homes built by Elora Hardy and her team in Bali twist, curve and surprise at every turn. They defy convention because the bamboo itself is so enigmatic. No two poles of bamboo are alike, so every home, bridge and bathroom is exquisitely unique. In this beautiful, immersive talk, she shares the potential of bamboo, as both a sustainable resource and a spark for the imagination. "We have had to invent our own rules," she says.

8. On Education: How could we forget the first lady?

Speaking to an audience of students, US First Lady Michelle Obama reminds each one to take their education seriously — and never take it for granted. This new, brilliant generation, she tells us, is the one that could close the gap between the world as it is and the world as it should be.

9. On How Body Language Can Change Everything: Ever try power posing?

Amy Cuddy is a psychologist and Harvard Business School professor. Her research on body language reveals that we can change other people’s perceptions — and perhaps even our own body chemistry — simply by changing body positions.

10. A TEDx Talk by our Founder, Michelle on how travel Inspires her.

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