Nothing compares to that “light-bulb moment.” The million-dollar idea pops into your head, and you temporarily morph into a stick-man cartoon with a bright yellow bulb shining above you.
But arriving at that idea is never simple. You carry out brainstorming sessions. You spend hours staring at a blank document. And no amount of caffeine seems to get those rusty cogs in your brain to turn.
In a community of go-getters and entrepreneurs like Typeform, you’ve got to ask yourself:
“Where do others hunt for inspiration?”
“What actually fuels other people’s light-bulb moments?”
“What types of seeds grow into successful startups?”
Thanks to TED, sharing thoughts comes in bite-size videos. Whether it’s learning about a far corner of the world, or a different angle on a common topic, one thing’s for sure:
Listening to other people share their own ideas gets neurones firing and helps our brains connect the dots that lead to our “Aha!” revelation.
To start off the domino effect, we asked 15 Typeformers for the one TED talk that really got them thinking. And here’s what they came back with.
1. How to escape education’s death valley, Sir Ken Robinson
“Because education needs to change and he absolutely hits the spot. Aside from that, he is an impressive speaker and very funny.”
2. How to truly listen, Evelyn Glennie
“Listening is one of my most important values. The way she makes you think about it takes it to a whole other level. The last minutes of the talk (when it’s not a talk anymore) are just incredible. Headphones on, volume up, get comfortable, and enjoy.”
3. The puzzle of motivation, Dan Pink
“I find that being motivated at work is one of the biggest issues we have these days. There’s so many people that just wait for the weekend to live their lives. Dan Pink gives a new point of view about the topic.”
4. Our campaign to ban plastic bags in Bali, Melati and Isabel Wijsen
“It’s inspiring to see people so young taking on an issue that feels local to them, but is actually a global problem.”
5. How to sound smart in your TEDx Talk, Will Stephen
“This one’s a satirical talk on what every single Ted talk sounds like. Tongue in cheek, properly funny, and scarily accurate.”
6. The danger of a single story, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
“I love this TED talk because Chimamanda talks about how dangerous a single story can be: ‘My roommate asked if she could listen to what she called my tribal music, and was consequently very disappointed when I produced my tape of Mariah Carey.'”
7. Battling Bad Science, Ben Goldacre
“It reminds us how careful we have to be with statistics and science. It’s an idea you can use at work—be open with data and make sure you can back up your claims. It’s good to be comfortable when it comes to understanding numbers.”
8. Why we do what we do, Tony Robbins
“I find it inspiring, because it helps you to think about very simple things in a completely different way. It motives you to take action, and go for what you want in life.”
9. How great leaders inspire action, Simon Sinek
“He explains, in detail, how people actually go about the process of making decisions.”
10. Why write? Penmanship for the 21st Century, Jake Weidmann
“It links the importance of writing with psychology and how we think—an idea that I find just brilliant.”
11. A love poem for lonely prime numbers, Harry Baker
“Words, numbers, and vision blend into poetry slam at its best. Purple paper people, prime numbers in love, and the sunshine kid. Hilarious, mind-turning, touching”
12. When online shaming spirals out of control, Jon Ronson
“I’ve always been interested in mob mentality and I think it’s fascinating to see how this has evolved in modern times and how, with the benefit of anonymity, we run roughshod over people’s lives and reputations.”
13. The beauty of data visualization, David McCandless
“This talk inspired me to move my career from telecommunications to data science.”
14. Do schools kill creativity?, Sir Ken Robinson
“I’m quite obsessed with how we educate our children, and the future of education.”
15. My daughter, my wife, our robot, and the quest for immortality, Martine Rothblatt
“It’s hard to describe. They convey very powerful and important ideas.”
Have you had your lightbulb moment? Here’s how to put your big idea into practice.