The Best TEDTalks from Social Workers and Doctors

TEDTalks are an excellent way to learn about the world from experts on a variety of subjects. Of particular interest to Teen Rehab readers, there are some excellent talks on mental health and well-being by social workers, doctors and psychiatrists. Here are some of the best if you want to learn more about the science behind addiction, happiness and more.

1. A Simple Way to Break a Bad Habit


In this TEDTalk, psychiatrist Judson Brewer discusses the relationship between mindfulness and addiction—from smoking, to overeating, to many other bad habits. He teaches about the mechanism of habit development and a simple but profound tactic that might help you beat your next urges.

2. How to Stay Calm When You Know You’ll Be Stressed

When we’re stressed, our ability to think clearly and rationally becomes clouded. This TEDTalk features neuroscientist Daniel Levitin, who has some ideas how to avoid making critical mistakes in stressful situations.

3. How to Practice Emotional First Aid

Why don’t we see a health professional when we feel emotional pain? Guy Winch says that while many of us deal with common psychological-health issues on our own, we don’t have to. In this TEDTalk, he makes a compelling case to practice emotional hygiene—to take care of our emotions, our minds, with the same diligence we take care of our bodies.

4. What Makes a Good Life? Lessons From the Longest Study on Happiness

In this TED Talk, psychiatrist Robert Waldinger discusses a 75-year-old study on adult development and its data on true happiness and satisfaction. He shares three important lessons from the study as well as some practical wisdom on how to lead a fulfilling, long life.

5. The Surprising Science of Happiness

Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert challenges the idea that we’ll be miserable if we don’t get what we want in this TEDTalk and discusses the power of our “psychological immune system.”

6. The Power of Vulnerability

Brené Brown, research professor in the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, offers this poignant TEDTalk on human connection and vulnerability. She talks about human connection, our ability to empathize, belong and love.

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