Watch, listen, and learn

Soak-up inspiration from online talks

Apparently, we watch over one billion hours of YouTube videos a day, globally.1 Sure, a lot of that content is made up of cat videos, but YouTube - as well as a long list of other websites - also have an amazing collection of inspiring and insightful talks and lectures.

We’re not saying there’s no place for cats in your streaming future, but the next time you’re left wondering what to watch, why not load up something that’s really worthy of your time and attention?

Why

Here are a few reasons to take action.

Click for more info or scroll to read them all.

Make the most of your commute

Make the most of your commute

Got to take a train or bus to get to work? Why not kick-off your day with a brain-power hour (or half)? A simple daily habit like this won’t just help pass the time, it could transform your commute into the most inspiring - and potentially life changing - part of your day.

It doesn’t take long

TED talks are a maximum of 18 minutes.

RSA Animates are as little as half that.

School of Life clips start at just one minute!

So whether you’ve got time to settle in for a full-length lecture or just a few minutes to spare while you enjoy a coffee, there’s always time to give your noggin a little inspirational boost.

Stay fresh

When you have a lot to do in your working day, there’s little time to think about whether you could be doing things differently or better. Giving yourself a timeout to watch and listen to other people talk about how they do things can be a great way to expand your skill set and open your mind to new ideas.

With this extra info under your belt, you can work smarter, not harder.

Health, wellbeing and longevity

There are really strong links between being a lifelong learner and being a generally happier, healthier and more ‘successful’ person.2

So next time you choose to spend that spare 18 minutes learning how the world’s longest underwater tunnel was built (instead of scrolling on social media), take a moment to imagine your future self saying thanks.

Global Goals

In September 2017, an historic agreement was signed by UN member nations agreeing to work towards 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development by 2030, otherwise known as the SDGs.

Achieving these ambitious goals will require action from governments, businesses, NGOs, and individuals alike. We can - and must - all play our part.

By making the 'Watch, listen and learn' pledge, you are contributing in your own small way to the following SDG targets:

3.4: By 2030, reduce by one third premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment and promote mental health and well-being

4.4: By 2030, substantially increase the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, including technical and vocational skills, for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship

4.7: By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development

8.2: Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation, including through a focus on high-value added and labour-intensive sectors

12.8: By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature

17.16: Enhance the global partnership for sustainable development, complemented by multi-stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the sustainable development goals in all countries, in particular developing countries

How

The world (wide web) is your oyster, so get out there and start exploring.

Just like real-life adventures, asking clued-up friends, family and colleagues for recommendations is a great place to start. You could also look at 'recommended' or 'you may also like' lists, or search the websites of your favourite publications or well-regarded academic institutions. Their events pages can be a good place to look – many, including the likes of the London School of Economics and The Guardian, record and publish their live events.

Another approach is to sign up to a newsletter, which curates and delivers worthwhile content straight to your inbox. We love https://maketomorrow.earth/ for their excellent climate and environmental themed watch-lists.

Ready to go? Here are a few more places you might like to start:

  • The Do Lectures: inspirational talks from passionate, creative people, mostly filmed in a shed in Wales.
  • TED Talks: ideas worth spreading, on all sorts of topics from people around the world.
  • Lynda: video courses on specific topics, from learning to use new software to business skills (subscription required).
  • Ten great podcast series on change-making and climate change, compiled by the team at MakeTomorrow.
  • The RSA: podcasts from some of the world's leading thinkers, on topics from education to politics.

Success Stories

207

Pledges
in total

207kg

CO2
pledged

I was a little ambitious saying that I would do this daily. Sometimes my busy schedule meant I found it difficult to fit it in, but it did encourage me to listen to loads of new talks and I've learned a lot. I will definitely keep this up (but maybe on a weekly basis).

Essentially this was a mix of professional environmental management CPD based films/webinars from the likes of IEMA. Lessons learnt - take a Netflix approach and bin watch while I'm travelling on the train!

Watching TED talks, very enlightening :)

I watched many youtube over the last 2 months (almost every day) and have improved my general knowledge on all things relating to energy conservation, fitness and wellbeing.

Loved it. Now using audible and R4 to listen to Podcasts.

I just watched 4 out of 8 but was really helpful, I will continue.

I have struggled throughout life to read and pick up a book so talks online have opened my mind and benefitted me massively in growing and developing.

Love audible, Gaia and even Amazon prime has material that is useful and these are now my best sources of inspiring educational self help material.

I've been enthused about learning and sharing information related to climate change related science, personal lifestyle impacts and carbon footprint.

My Bluetooth headphones ran out of battery and I couldn't find the charger or spare headphones (need to declutter!) but I did very well while they were working - must get them charged!

Started taking history & start up podcasts on my long runs! Thoroughly enjoying & keeps me entertained to go beyond the hour :-)