I chose Andy Puddicombe's video on Mindfulness as my favourite TED Talk for today's class because I agree with him: for such a short time commitment, the payoff is potentially tremendous.
This has been true for me. When I first started teaching, I was enthusiastic and became a bit of a maniac, sometimes working fifty to sixty hours a week. While this made my teaching career sing along nicely, it did nothing for my happiness. I found I was missing out on my own life because I was too busy.
So, I decided to make a change. After doing some research, I stumbled across some research on meditation and mindfulness. Since then, I've been meditating once a day and trying to be more in the present moment. When I'm driving, I keep the radio off and just focus on driving. When I'm teaching, I try not to think about the chores I need to do at home. When I'm at home, I try not to worry about teaching.
It's amazing. My days feel more enjoyable: they seem longer, but less hectic. Basically, I'm a lot happier.
I fully recommend watching the video, learning more about mindfulness and giving it a try!
Today we are deconstructing a TED Talk (finding the thesis and supporting points). So, here is my deconstruction of Andy Puddicombe's Mindfulness TED Talk.
· Our brain is our most valuable resource and we are sadly neglecting it; we should all start remedying that situation by being mindful or meditating for ten minutes a day.
Our mind is our most valuable resource – everything that happens to us happens through our mind. We spend a lot of time doing upkeep on other important equipment in our lives, why not our brain?
All you need to do is to take 10 minutes out a day to step back, to familiarize yourself with the present moment so that you get to experience a greater sense of focus, calm and clarity in your life.
I watch TED Talks nearly every night before bed. I love to have something brilliant swishing around in my head as I sleep so that it can mix with what's already there and potentially create a nugget of new understanding (I've been reading Steven Johnson's book about new ideas, which is awesome too). That's synthesis: mixing the old with the new and then being able to express it in a new way.
This is one of my favourite TED Talks because it addresses mindfulness, which has the potential to address so much of what ails our society today. Why are we letting ourselves suffer unnecessary stress and conflict? If we all followed Andy Puddicombe's advice, we could start learning how to really live our lives, to be in the moment and to let go the stuff that doesn't matter.
So, now I'll do ten minutes of mindfulness every night once I'm done my TED watching. I hope you try it too!
I'm going to dispel a myth for you. Teachers don't teach just for the summer and winter vacations. We teach because we are creative and curious and love inspiring others to be the same way. In fact, we often spend our time off out learning something new to bring back to the classroom.
Hence my passion for TED Talks. They've been criticized for making serious topics too trivial or for appealing to the lowest common denominator, but I would strongly disagree. Ideas need to be shared in ways that excite people. If a TED Talk does a good job, the audience won't be able to help but investigate the topic in more detail on their own time.
So, in previous classes, we watched a couple talks that I found interesting and pertinent to our ePortfolios and Presentations of Learning (body language and mindfulness). Today, students were allowed to choose their own TED Talks.
So far? Awesome! I can't wait to see the presentations on Feb 13th.