By Allison Xu
High school students live busy lives. Piles of homework, quizzes and tests, and multiple clubs and community service activities can all make us feel overwhelmed. Therefore, knowing how to stay productive is critical for success in high school. These six Ted Talks can shed light on how to stay positive and complete tasks effectively and efficiently.
To nearly every student, stress is the number one enemy of success. Kelly McGonigal, a psychologist at Stanford University, finds that this isn’t necessarily the case. In her research, she discovered that stress itself may not be bad for us. Interestingly, it’s the way we view stress that can harm us. Watch her talk to learn surprising facts about stress and how we can effectively reduce stress to develop positive work habits and lead mindful lives.
Nearly every student is familiar with procrastination and its detrimental effects on our wellbeing and productivity. Tim Urban, one of the most popular bloggers on the Internet and a procrastinator himself, takes us to think beyond waiting until a deadline and how delaying things prevent us from fully achieving our goals in life. Watch his speech to learn why procrastination may be even more harmful than we think it is, and how we can combat its long-term effects before we run out of time.
Our lives are becoming more and more consumed by the screens around us. Chris Bailey, the author of the book Hyperfocus, realized that these everyday distractions make us overstimulated, unable to concentrate on one task for long. Watch his talk to learn how we can make our minds less stimulated and focus deeper for better creativity and productivity.
Years ago, when Angela Lee Duckworth was a seventh-grade math teacher, she noticed that IQ wasn’t the only difference between successful and struggling students. Taking on a psychological perspective, after conducting multiple studies of possible predictors of success, she discovered one significant characteristic of successful people — ”grit.” Watch her speech to learn more about her theory of “grit” and its power to transform the success of students both in and out of the classroom.
When students think of failure, they think of it as a negative thing. In his talk, YouTube star and former NASA engineer Mark Rober takes on a different approach to failure, saying that if we don’t see failure in a negative light, but rather, a positive one, we are more inclined to try again, learn more, and succeed. Watch his speech to hear about how the game Super Mario and various studies helped him realize this, and how we can apply this knowledge to our lives.
Most of us believe that if we work hard, we will be successful. And if we are successful, we will be happy. Therefore, hard work will lead to happiness. But could this be working the other way around? Psychologist Shawn Achor argues that being positive can help bring in some of our best work. Watch his talk to learn how we can train our brains to become happier to inspire higher productivity and success.