TEDx – Communication in a digital age


In 2017 Edinburgh University held a TEDx conference on the theme of ‘Passion’. As I sat down to apply to be a speaker at the event I realised that my passion was more for a way of being than a particular subject or thing. It was about connections and links, about communication and an interweaving of dialogues. I wrote it out in a letter format and was taken on to speak at the conference on the theme of communication in a digital age.

Dear You…

Can we really talk aboutpassion or just be passionate? We talk a lot, the how’s and why’s but somethings you can just feel inside.

‘Prove your passion to me’, they say at interviews.

I go blank for a second, ‘well I…’ I say as something glib gurgles forth- it sounded more real when it was a thought had whilst walking on the way.

A cold sweat hits you, slight numbness and terror, maybe I’m a fraud… a passionless cucumber. I mean I do things, and I enjoy them; everyone…from playing, singing, reading, walking, talking, writing, learning, working, sorting, thinking, or just being among others who are doing the same.

You see I believe the point is to give, and to try and give yourself whole, so when we turn our hands, hearts, and heads to doing things we connect ourselves and can give more truly in full. Passion is present in the way we live, in the actions that we take and the way that we do

And too many people with purely singular passion could lead to a place where paths could not meet. So as well as throwing ourselves into a single pursuit, writing all day, dancing till raw, working to get just that bit more and more and more…Take time to look outwards as well, to those around us, those going through hell, those who are hurt, lonely, in pain, or a bit upset. If ‘passion’ in the singular consumes us then what do we have left?

But to be passionate in the way you see life, is to have a passion for living and doing and being among. Is this something we forget about as we concentrate ever inwards on our tiny selves?

We may need to have a passion, but let’s try to make it about the way in which we do.

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