The 15 Best TED Talks On Anxiety, Stress, and Fear

A few of these TED talks have made the rounds online. You might have seen one or two before. Others are not quite as well known.

For those who don’t know, TED is a global non-profit organization and community of individuals dedicated to seeking a better understanding of the world. The TED motto is “How can we best spread great ideas?”

Mental health is a field in need of good ideas, and in need of channels for those ideas to spread.

Here are 15 TED talks on anxiety, fear, and stress that I’ve found inspiring.

If you have an additional TED or TEDx talk on mental wellness that has inspired you, drop a link in the comments section. I’ll check it out and add it to the list.


How to make stress your friend – Kelly McGonigal

“Can changing how you think about stress make you healthier? And here the science says yes. When you change your mind about stress, you can change your body’s response to stress.”


How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll Be Stressed – Daniel Levitin

“When you’re under stress, the brain releases cortisol. Cortisol is toxic, and it causes cloudy thinking. So part of the practice of the pre-mortem is to recognize that under stress you’re not going to be at your best, and you should put systems in place.”


Your body language shapes who you are  – Amy Cuddy

“I want to start by offering you a free no-tech life hack, and all it requires of you is this: that you change your posture for two minutes.”

“Our bodies change our minds and our minds can change our behavior, and our behavior can change our outcomes.”


Be The Warrior Not The Worrier: Fighting Anxiety & Fear –  Angela Ceberano | TEDxBedminster

“I’m here because the way that I view my anxiety has changed. I now view my fears, my worries and my anxiety as a good thing, and I use it to my advantage.”


Anxiety: Hibernate, Adapt, or Migrate – Summer Beretsky | TEDxWilliamsport

“My decision to migrate put control back into my life and eventually I gained control over my panic attacks and my world grew larger again. I was no longer afraid to leave my house. I started small.”


Surviving anxiety – Solome Tibebu | TEDxTC

“I never shared my anxiety with any of my friends not even the closest ones. This was mostly because it was so exhausting trying to explain something so inexplicable to those that I knew would not be able to understand.”


Rethinking anxiety: Learning to face fear – Dawn Huebner | TEDxAmoskeag

“Every time you listen to your worry, you’re feeding it. Every time you feed your worry you’re making it stronger. But, when you don’t obey your worry, when you talk back to it, challenge it, corrected it, that’s a win for you.”


Stoic optimism: Ryan Holiday | TEDxUChicago

“Our actions may be impeded…but there can be not impeding our intentions and dispositions. Because we can accommodate and adapt. The mind adapts and converts to its own purposes the obstacle to our acting.”


The power of introverts – Susan Cain 

“Here’s where the bias comes in. Our most important institutions, our schools and our workplaces, they are designed mostly for extroverts and for extroverts’ need for lots of stimulation. And also we have this belief system right now that I call the new groupthink, which holds that all creativity and all productivity comes from a very oddly gregarious place.”


You are your greatest ally – Jessica Amos | TEDxSalem

“When you are overwhelmed with apprehension of a possible future misfortune or danger you can always come back into the body in this moment and know you are safe.”


All it takes is 10 mindful minutes – Andy Puddicombe

“And the sad fact is that we are so distracted that we’re no longer present in the world in which we live. We miss out on the things that are most important to us, and the crazy thing is that everybody just assumes, that’s the way life is, so we’ve just kind of got to get on with it. That’s really not how it has to be.”


Feeling good – Dr. David Burns | TEDxReno

“I was treating patients with anti-depressants and other medications, but there were only two problems from my point of view: the first is our own research didn’t seem to confirm that depression or anxiety were actually due to a chemical imbalance in the brain. And in addition, I was getting out anti-depressants by the bucketful to patients. I had hundreds of patients and only a few of them were being helped. Most of them were not.”

The Art of Stillness – Pico Iyer

“I found that the best way that I could develop more attentive and more appreciative eyes was, oddly, by going nowhere, just by sitting still.”


Depression, the secret we share – Andrew Solomon

“The opposite of depression is not happiness, but vitality, and it was vitality that seemed to seep away from me in that moment.”


Choose yourself – James Altucher | TEDxSanDiego

“I made a commitment every that every day I was going to one percent improve on being around people I loved and trusted and people who loved and trusted me. And, it started off very difficult. I didn’t know what to do. I was on the ground”


The power of vulnerability – Brené Brown | TEDxHouston

“There was only one variable that separated the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging and the people who really struggle for it. And that was, the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they’re worthy of love and belonging. That’s it. They believe they’re worthy.”

You might also wanna check Understand and Master The Brain Chemicals That Cause Anxiety.

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