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TEDx — The Transformational Life (video)


The Transformational Life is the second installation of This Is Reno’s showcase of a valuable resource, TedX, description provided by Kendra Fleming. The Transformational Life features the thoughtful analysis of Robb Smith, University of Nevada alumnus, regarding the “era of interconnectivity.”

Throughout The Transformational Life, Robb Smith, an alumnus of the University of Nevada, Reno, stands firm in his belief that through interconnectedness we can “expand our capacity for love.” Smith describes the eras in which society’s populations have grown, from the Agrarian era to the current Information Age. This is the era where everyone is connected in one way or another. Think of all the social networking sites that have evolved in recent years.

In what Smith calls the transformational life, everything is rapidly changing shape. For example, consider the friends one person has on their Facebook account, and the friends that their Facebook friends have. Well, the friends of friends on Facebook have online friends as well. Sharing that one mutual friend can connect two people who have never met before. This interconnectedness has been made possible because of more data access, resulting in a data overload that is overwhelming for many people. People are being exposed to different perspectives, activities that they have never heard of, as well as different religions. In this complex age of uncertainty easy addiction systems, the “dopamine” of modern societies, are winning. Examples of the “dopamine” of modern society that we are familiar with include companies such as McDonald’s, Facebook and Apple.

Smith mentions, “Three in four adults can’t meet the mental demands of modern life.” There seems to be a new phone advertised daily as the best, with new applications to download and even new ways to text. Is it any wonder that more and more adults can’t keep track of new ways to manage technology? People strive to keep up with the latest technology by buying the newest cell phone on the market or the newest tablet, and even then it’s a process to learn everything that one of those gadgets can do. What about “two in three adults” being either “overweight or obese?” A fast food restaurant is conveniently located on nearly every street corner, most of them having drive-thru pathways to easily drive one’s car through. It’s called “fast” because it’s convenient, in one’s view, and it seemingly satisfies the consumer.

What about the people who run these companies? “CEOs have the lowest emotional intelligence in the work force. Fact,” states Smith. There is a strong belief in financial success outrunning much of what one fears in life. These fears deal with finances. Smith believes that the achievement of financial success won’t be a success that keeps away one’s fears in 2020 because we are interconnected. Through growing empathy and building businesses together, through interconnectivity everyone can help each other.

Smith tells us that the transformational life is a healthy response to this age of complexity and data overload. We can, he councils, discern wise options, evolving in genuine empathy from a greed based society of egonomics to one of conscious economics. The transformational life requires, as Smith explains, shifting away from a state of fear to one of recognizing the sacred, both within ourselves and our relationship with our biosphere.

TEDx was created in the spirit of TED’s mission, “ideas worth spreading.” The program is designed to give communities, organizations and individuals the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through TED-like experiences at the local level. At TEDx events, a screening of TEDTalks videos — or a combination of live presenters and TEDTalks videos — sparks deep conversation and connections. TEDx events are fully planned and coordinated independently, on a community-by-community basis.

Kendra Fleming
Kendra Fleming
My name is Kendra Fleming. I am 20 years old and currently a junior at University of Nevada, Reno with a major in English Literature and a minor in Cultural Anthropology. I love volleyball, soccer, hanging out with friends and warm weather. Born in California and raised in Las Vegas, I have always wanted to have a career that’s involved in the area of English, but I was never sure what until my sophomore year in college. I am an English literature major with the hopes of becoming an editor after college, but for now I am working on my writing. To be a great editor, I need to be a good writer as well. I can only get better with more practice outside of my scholarly studies.