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3 Thought-Provoking Ted Talks That Will Inspire You to Get Organized

Sunday, February 26th, 2017

3 Thought-Provoking Ted Talks That Will Inspire You to Get Organized |

Do you ever watch TED Talks? I love watching TED Talks.

If I get to watch at least one a day I’m a happy camper. I watch them while I’m cooking, while I’m on the treadmill, and while I’m eating lunch at my computer. If I don’t have the time, I use one of my favorite apps, Pocket to store them until I have a free 20 minutes to watch.

TED began as a conference in California in 1984–five years before the birth of the World Wide Web. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design.  It’s mission is to spread knowledge and since it’s inception, TED Talks have had attracted over a billion views online–there’s a lot more knowledgeable people in this world thanks to TED!

With all my TED Talk watching, I was curious as to whether there were any talks on the topic of Organizing. Well–there are! No one is sorting through papers or an overstuffed garage on stage, but the TED Talks I’ve selected are based on an ‘organizing’ theme. Carve out time in your day to watch them–you may learn something new just like I did…

Jessi Arrington: Wearing Nothing New

In my opinion, Jessi is one brave woman. She packed seven pair of underwear for her trip to Los Angeles to do her TED Talk. My heart is palpitating just thinking about it. When she got off the plane with her very tiny suitcase, she went shopping for clothes at local thrift stores in order to “reduce the impact of her wardrobe on the environment and her wallet.” I don’t expect you to watch this and then travel light, but listening to what she has to say, might cause you to take a good look at the clothes in your closet.

Laura Vanderkam: How To Gain Control of Your Free Time

Laura Vanderkam writes about Time Management. She says, “Time is highly elastic. We cannot make more time but time will stretch to accommodate what we choose to put into it.” Basically–it’s all about priorities. Your priorities. Your schedule and your choices. Listen to her TED Talk and think about how you use your time…

Tim Urban: Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator

Do you procrastinate often?  Whether you do or not, you’re going to get a good laugh out of this funny TED Talk. You might even see a bit of yourself in Tim Urban. Think about what you might be procrastinating on and watch out for the ‘monkey.’

–Yes–I said ‘3’ in the title but this one is short–only around 5 minutes long: Mundano: Pimp My…Trash Cart?.

The unsung heroes of the organizing world are garbage men. They take away what we no longer want in our lives and are not always highly regarded for their work. Watch how one artist in Brazil took the work of Catadores, people who collect recycling, and transformed their work into an art form to be celebrated and appreciated by their communities.


Which Ted Talk resonated with you? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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About Stacey Agin Murray

Stacey is a professional organizer & speaker in New Jersey specializing in residential organizing, time, and paper management challenges. She also authored The Organized Bride’s Thank You Note Handbook: Let Systems and 101 Modern Sample Thank You Notes Take You From Overwhelmed to Organized.

Categories: Basic Organizing Principles, Clothing, Helpful Organizing Tips, Recycling, Time, Trash


12 responses to “3 Thought-Provoking Ted Talks That Will Inspire You to Get Organized”

  1. Seana Turner says:

    I will watch all of these! Love a good Ted Talk. Have to admit I can’t imagine traveling with only 7 pair of underwear. I do travel light, but not that light!

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      I agree–that is traveling VERY light! I’m petite and it’s sometimes tough for me to find clothes in stores that carry my size! I can’t imagine going to the NAPO Conference with nothing but underwear and directions to the nearest thrift shop!

  2. Loved Laura Vanderkam! I’d already seen and enjoyed Tim Urban. I. too, love TED Talks and am presenting one at NAPO2017 (Susan Cain’s The Power of Introverts). I’ve added some of my own material and am calling it Networking for Introverts. See you in Pittsburgh?

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      Yes, I’ll be in Pittsburgh! See you there. I loved Laura Vanderkam’s TED Talk, too. I learned so much from it–lots of ‘takeaways’ and time management tidbits to use in my daily life and pass on to my clients. Congrats on getting to present at the NAPO Conference!

  3. I’m a fan of all Ted Talks! Out of all the ones you shared, I particularly like Tim Urban’s video. I shared it with my kids and they enjoyed it and hopefully received the message from it.

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      That Tim Urban TED Talk had me rolling on the floor the first time I watched it. I especially loved his stick figure artwork. I’m glad your kids enjoyed it–it’s a great video to reference again and again when you feel as if your kids are procrastinating on something.

  4. Andi Willis says:

    I haven’t watched any of these. I’m putting them on my list. I would also recommend A Rich Life with Less Stuff by The Minimalists. Hearing how they went through the process is inspiring.

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      The Minimalists were the keynote speakers at the NAPO Conference in 2015 and their story was fascinating. I’ll have to check out that TED Talk–maybe while I’m eating lunch today? Thanks for sharing!

  5. You watch a TED Talk every day – wow, I’m impressed! A couple of years ago I started to watch one every week, and I kept it up for many months, but then I just stopped. Maybe I’ll add it back as a recurring task so I don’t forget – thanks for the reminder.

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      I’d love to be able to watch a TED talk everyday! But, I only get to watch them sometimes when I’m cooking or eating lunch at my computer and I only average 1-2 times a week on the treadmill. If you’d like to get back to your weekly TED talk watching, I use an app called Pocket to store them until I’m ready to watch them–that might be helpful. I’m glad I could remind you to get back to TED. 🙂

  6. stepahnie says:

    I love watching Ted Talks! Thanks for this, I am totally saving this so I can watch them all at once!

    • Stacey Agin Murray says:

      I hope you had a chance to sit down and watch them. I find Ted Talks to be so inspiring–maybe these will ‘speak’ to you, too.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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