Curiously, despite the increase in technologically enabled opportunities to pursue one’s dreams, reports of unhappiness and depression are at an all-time high. While the negative mental health externalities resulting from COVID-19 quarantines and lockdowns are well documented, the pandemic only accelerated pre-existing trends. Unfortunately, even though social media has the potential to connect individuals over shared interests, the link between social media and depression is stark.
As long as social media influencers continue to selectively portray unattainable and materialistic aspects of their lives, giving the public – especially the youth – an unrealistic model of what it means to live a meaningful, successful, or happy life, this link between social media and depression will exist; further, as long as social media has a stronghold on the younger generation, depression rates will remain high for this segment of the population. Fortunately, a seasoned and proven group of individuals have a more mature perspective on life and a sincere desire to help people find their inner-self and their life’s purpose. These individuals are not only drawing upon their history of ‘real-world’ successes to give the public authentic advice about life’s journey, but they are also actively dispelling some of the more damaging societal myths and misconceptions.
It takes courage and many years of life experience to walk onto the most prestigious stage in the world of public speaking and represent to a live audience that many of the most universally accepted myths about life are dead wrong! That is precisely what Antony Gordon did recently when he walked onto the stage in London to present his TED Talk hosted by TEDxHult London.
Antony’s TED Talk focused on dispelling one of the most popular myths that pop culture wants us to believe – i.e. – the notion that a happy life is a pain-free life. The overwhelmingly positive response from the audience following his remarks is a testament to the fact that Antony clearly made the case in a polished and entertaining style.
Then again, for those who know Antony, the success of his TED Talk is no surprise. Antony is a Wall Street Journal and USA Today best-selling author, graduate of Harvard Law School, has completed several Executive Programs at Harvard Business School, and is the host of a critically acclaimed podcast.
It is not only Antony’s pedigree and professional training as a speaker that enabled him to win over the audience, but the fact that he has worked very closely with some of the most renowned professional athletes and celebrities which ensured that his remarks were believable and authentic. As Antony pointed out in his talk, from his first-hand experience, he has a unique vantage point to know that many of these icons, who pop-culture places on pedestals, are sadly leading lives of quiet desperation.
After more than twenty-five years of experience working with famous public personalities, Antony knows the negative impact of millions of people blindly embracing pop culture myths that are destructive. But what is the solution?
The follow-up to his TED Talk is the launching of a platform that not only goes a long way to provide a solution but, in many ways, is the culmination of Antony’s life work. The hint as to what the platform will contain dovetails with the tagline of Antony’s podcast – “Lessons for Life I did not learn at Harvard!” The University of Life TM (‘UOL’) – Antony’s brainchild, is now only weeks away from its soft launch.
The focus of the UOL will be to give its ‘students’ the essential tools needed to live a healthy, meaningful, and happy life. Lessons that one will not learn in the hallowed halls of any Ivy League School. Given the level of research and focus groups that have been conducted by Antony and his team, many of the deleterious pop culture myths may finally be about to meet their match, and who knows, Harvard may finally get a run for its money amongst a generation that is looking for answers and practical tools!