I I want to share a special list with you today. It’s a list of TED lectures on hiking and nature. And there are two reasons this list is special.
First, these TED conversations can change the way you think. I say this because they changed my view of things, especially trekking and our relationship with nature.
And second, they are suggested by Lakshmi Selvakumaran, Head of Green Trails and Training at Indiahikes, who deepens the perspective with open-ended insights into the TED conversations she is associated with.
You will also find inspiring TED conversations with executives at Indiahikes towards the end.
So if you’ve been looking for a ton of inspiration – here it is! Take a look at these and tell us – which ones inspired you the most?
1. The 2,185 mile hike
Lakshmi shares: Last week Sandhya UC, Co-Founder / COO of Indiahikes, shared an article on the need to rethink the way we learn after COVID. The article was very thought provoking. The author, an expert in the field of education, advocates taking this opportunity to rethink and possibly start over the way our Indian education system is set up.
I couldn’t agree more. I am sure most of you will agree with her too.
This article made something clear to me. Treks offer children the opportunity to learn to be better people – being self-sufficient, caring, compassionate, and resilient is of course part of treks. Something we call experiential building.
So how about imagining a future education system that includes experiential outdoor learning?
That brings me to this video. I can’t imagine an 8 and 9 year old doing a 2,185 mile hike. But they did. I can bet that they are better suited to tackling the world and its insecurities than many of the adults I know around me. If anything, I realized that experiential learning is something we absolutely need to consider in order to prepare children for life.
I know you have to think – not all children can go on a similar journey. I agree with you. But I think trekking and the outdoors in general, however difficult they may be, have the same effect on children. That should get us thinking.
In this video: David Kallin, an outdoor adventurer, took his family on a brave journey. This was the 2,185 mile Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. This lasted over five months. And David took the stage for this TED talk on hiking to share how he saw his children get off, fight, and get used to the wild at ages 8 and 9.
2. Let yourself be inspired by nature
Lakshmi shares: It’s the same reason here. Our children spend more time inside than outside. Our children are more afraid of elements of nature that they are not familiar with and it is sad. Many of our children are losing their basic instinct – curiosity about nature and its elements. In the long run, our children will lose.
You will not be prepared for life. You will face the brunt of this, mentally and physically. We can change that. Because of this, I consider this video to be another relevant video that we need to watch.
In this video: IslandWood CEO Ben Klasky points out a serious problem – children don’t spend enough time outdoors. In this TED talk on hiking, he offers a glimpse into his personal life and how he manages to get his kids to get out and explore. He talks about innovative ways that make us think outside the box.
3. To the South Pole and back – the hardest 105 days of my life
Lakshmi shares: If you step away from that topic, this next video is pure adventure. Enclosed in our home, our adventures are different (mine is making sure I cook, clean, work, exercise, hang out with friends and family, and finish any free online classes I’ve signed up for). But I miss the outdoors. I’ve started to forget how cold it was in the mountains last January. But this video brought all those memories back to me in a good way. Well, have fun!
In this video: In 1912, Captain Robert Falcon Scott went on a polar expedition. But it was unsuccessful. So the explorer Ben Saunders stepped in to complete it. He set out on a four-month round trip of 1,800 miles from the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back. And just five months after his return, Ben took to the stage to talk about it.
4. Everest The Harder Way
Lakshmi shares: This video is pure inspiration. That talk reminded me of a memory I was reading – the rise of my life. The memoir is the story of a woman with a transplanted heart who climbs all the peaks in the world. I cried at the end of the book.
The sheer determination and the spirit to achieve much beyond myself in spite of all adversities give me goosebumps all the time. That makes my problems trivial.
This conversation is very similar. While sitting at home, it gives me all the courage and motivation to face my own challenges with a smile.
In this video: Nick Talbot has cystic fibrosis. But that didn’t stop Nick Talbot. Despite suffering from cystic fibrosis, a serious genetic disease that affected his lungs, he made his way to the mountain. Everest.
In this talk, Nick takes us through his arduous climb and what happened when the natural disaster occurred not just once but twice when he was trying to climb the highest mountain in the world.
5. How adventure makes you smarter, stronger, and more attractive
Lakshmi shares: This is one of the most exciting TED lectures I’ve ever seen. I laughed most of the conversation. But I was also referring to everything he said. I’ve had a lot of adventures and mishaps and they made me who I am. You’ve helped me become smart, strong, and maybe more attractive.
In a nutshell, I wish all people in life mishaps – because what is life without such fun?
So sit back and enjoy his conversation. You’ll nod your head, yes, yes, YES! or you will want to plan your next adventure when all of this is over.
In this video: Tyler Tervooren, an independent entrepreneur, has come across a formula that can harness the power of our brains, especially when dealing with high risk and high stress situations. In this talk he explains how combining passion and intuition with research and strategy can bring the human mind to places. For more information on Tyler’s risk tests and adventure strategies, please visit http://riskology.co
6. Prescribing nature for health
Lakshmi shares: This video reminded me of my last hike to Brahmatal. It wasn’t a normal hike. It was a hike with my team of 10 hiking guides. We trained during the trek.
Every day the Trek Leaders took turns to make the hike easier. We took the opportunity to learn from each other and improve our own trekking activities.
On the first day when we reached part of the forest, the hiking guide of the day stopped us. He gathered us all together. It was foggy. Nice trees around. He asked us to pick a tree, go there, hug it and share a secret with the tree.
It felt strange at first. But I noticed that each of us was unconsciously picking a tree and walking towards it.
Soon we forgot everyone around us and focused on an intense conversation with the tree.
The silence was too strong. I could only hear myself and the sound of a river flowing past (which I hadn’t noticed until then). I had nothing to share. So I just talked to the tree. I noticed it, watched the smallest details, and hugged it for as long as I could.
After a while we all came back. I could see that this little exercise had hit us all deeply. It was visible on our faces and in our silence.
We felt connected and many of us felt lighter and more peaceful. For me this instance is a reminder of the healing power of nature.
This speaker shares the same thought, the same philosophy. I wish I could take you and make you find your tree, hug it, and develop a relationship with it. But right now I want to strongly remind you that nature needs to heal and improve us.
In this video: Thanks to the lockdown, we won’t take it for granted now. But as Lakshmi mentioned, there is another reason why you should step out of the house into a natural space. In this inspiring TED talk, Dr. Nooshin Razani on the healing power of nature. In fact, she officially prescribes it to treat health problems.
7. How trekking can get you mentally fit!
In this inspiring TED talk on hiking, Arjun Majumdar, Founder and CEO of Indiahikes, talks about the effects of trekking. Here, Arjun is focusing more than just on physical transformation, but on how Treks can transform mental makeup. Check it out for a holistic perspective of what really happens when you hike.
8. How I climbed the mountain of entrepreneurship
Sandhya Chandrashekharayya, Co-Founder / COO of Indiahikes, goes one step further with this TED talk on hiking. She talks about how trekking made her an entrepreneur. Here she takes you on a journey full of passion and challenges. Sandhya certainly knows a thing or two about how to get the most out of her life.
9. Walks without tracks
After all, Lakshmi is in her element here, pointing out some simple but brilliant ideas that are good for the environment. In this video, she talks about behavior change, especially when it comes to trekking. If you want to make a difference as a trekker and leave the mountains greener, this TED talk about hiking is a must.
If you think we missed a TED talk on hiking, please mention it in the comments below. We’d like to add it to our list.
Stay at home. Stay inspired. And stay safe!