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6 Best TED Talks on VIA Character Strengths and Virtues

Selection TEDtalks Character Strengths

One of the most discussed categories in positive psychology is that of strengths. The VIA Character Strengths and Virtues lists the 6 main categories of virtues, which are:

  1. Wisdom and Knowledge
  2. Courage
  3. Humanity
  4. Justice
  5. Temperance and
  6. Transcendance 

In addition, each one of these consists of its own array of corresponding strengths. Awareness and application of character strengths has been found to positive influence work and life satisfaction as well as increasing the experience of positive emotions among many other research studies which have taken place.

Do you know you signature Character Strengths? Take the VIA survey now to find out. 

Are you effective at applying your strengths?

Let’s check out some of Ted Talks which can teach us something on each virtue and how they present in a everyday people. Now sit back and enjoy!

1) Wisdom and Knowledge: Creativity, Curiosity, Judgment, Love of Learning and Perspective

Beauty, truth and … physics? By Murray Gell-Mann

Winner of a Nobel Prize in Physics and dubbed ‘the man with 5 brains’, Murray Gell-Mann has dreamed of being a musician since he was young. This creative passion lead to him forming the “El Sistema”, gathering 300,000 poor children all over Venezuela with flexible managing style. He pointed out that music leads children to see a new perspective of their lives; emotionally and intellectually. By end the end he suggested that we ‘forget about books, learning has no boundary’.

2) Courage: Bravery, Perseverance, Honesty and Zest

A life lesson from a volunteer firefighter By Mark Bezos

What would it take for you to risk your life for something? Money? Fame? Dignity? In his talk, Bezos, the Assistant Captain of a volunteer fire fighting organisation, explains that it takes nothing for him to go inside a burning building, even just to rescue a pair of shoes. He shares these moments of risk and how he perceives them as fun! Though his work receives neither attention nor award, Bezos believes that it is essential for us not to wait to make a difference in somebody’s life, even if it means taking a risk just to get a pair  of their shoes.

3) Humanity: Love, Kindness and Social Intelligence

The power of vulnerability By Brené Brown

With over 25 million views, how could we miss this talk on the topic of humanity? As a researcher-storyteller, Brown shares with us what we have in common as human beings and delves into the topic meaning in our lives. She shows us when we want to control and perfect things, we are doing it against our true nature and this also limits us from feeling the positive side of life. What her decades of research suggest is that we are all enough and that is the beauty of life. Prepare to be seen.

4) Justice: Teamwork, Fairness and Leadership

The hidden reason for poverty the world needs to address now By Gary Haugen

‘Having laws but not having them enforced means nothing.’ The lives of the impoverished is perhaps not always about money or the lack of utilities. Through his fight against poverty as a civil rights lawyer, Haugen will show you the unheard story of poverty, the wrongs of the way we are dealing with this social construct, and how to fix its path going forward.

5) Temperance; Forgiveness, Humility, Prudence, and Self-Regulation

Why do ambitious women have flat heads? By Dame Stephanie Shirley

How challenging it must have been for one of the first female tech entrepreneur during the 1960s when most women were expected to stay and home and keep the house clean.  However when Freelance Programmers reached $3 billion, Dame Stephanie Shirley became one of the richest women in England. A child refugee, a successful entrepreneur, a mother of an autistic child and a philanthropist, let’s hear her story and learn temperance from this role model.

6) Transcendence; Appreciation of Beauty and Excellence, Gratitude, Hope, Humor, and Spirituality

The exhilarating peace of freediving By Guillaume Néry

See the upside down world of World Champion Freediver, Guillaume Néry, while he shows what goes on behind his records and competitions; a journey he found within two breathes. Go with him down to the bottom of the ocean to realize his moment of connection, the connection that keeps him going down over and over again. Are you ready to experience the world at 123 meters below the sea? Take a deep breath……. And Go!

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6 Best TED Talks on VIA Character Strengths and Virtues


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