The two phases of a micro-revolution

Hi, everyone! I’m grateful to TED for the opportunity to talk with very inspiring people. My name is André Gravatá and I’m a Brazilian. I was born in a low income area of the city of São Paulo. I come from a hardworking family. After much effort and luck I could go to college and I was able to come across TED. Then I volunteered in the organization of some editions of TEDx. It was there that the following question crossed my mind: why not organize a TEDx? Said and done. The TEDxYouth@Ibira theme was micro-revolutions. More than twenty speakers have been developing local projects that are changing their communities. We use the term micro-revolutions to designate actions that are transforming the lives of groups of people. By the way, TEDxYouth@Ibira was a micro-revolution too. The first edition, which was held last year, started with an e-mail that I sent to some friends. The event ended up with a team of fifteen people who have committed their time with so much enthusiasm.

I have three minutes to talk about two characteristics of a micro-revolution, based on the experience I’m having with TEDxYouth@Ibira and my life story. A micro-revolution happens in two phases simultaneously. Phase one: something happens inside of you. Phase two: something happens around you.

In other words, a micro-revolution is only genuine if it happens inside and outside of us. My life has been an intense journey of questioning. Questioning helps me to build the capacity to deal with my own self. You can only inspire a community when you actually learn to cope better with yourself and leave the comfort zone to reinvent your own life.

We should pay attention to ourselves and to the other people. The second phase of a micro-revolution is the people. Tell everyone what you are involved with. Don’t be afraid to share your journey with others. Keep in touch with everyone. An example, TEDxYouth@Ibira had lost all its sponsorship. The reason was: the company that supported the project started to face complex internal issues. If it weren’t for the amazing people on my side who spent endless nights searching for new sponsorships, we would not have been able to organize the event. You can not change the world alone, so strive to find traveling companions.

In short, whether it’s time to organize a TEDx or time to start a new project, I suggest you to feel your inside and outside phases. Talk to yourself and to others. This will certainly make the process flow much better. Study your own self and the world around you at the same time. I’m not giving you a recipe to better organize a TEDx within TEDx. It’s a strategy to take into account the two mentioned phases. When problems arise, remember the Brazilian writer Guimarães Rosa: “Life is such: warms and cools, tightens and then relaxes, calms down and then gets excited. All life wants from us is courage”. Thank you.

(Este post é a base da apresentação de três minutos que preparei para uma das atividades do TEDxSummit, na qual terei a oportunidade de compartilhar a minha experiência na organização do TEDxJovem@Ibira.)

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