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Why My TEDx Talk Was Glitch: Loving Our Detours, Our Glitches

27 surgeries, it’s been a very long, detoured journey, and it still isn’t over yet.

But what makes the journey meaningful, and ultimately rewarding, is the ability to share, and know that you can possibly help someone through their own “detours.” Something I’ve learned over time, is that a Detour is Not a Dead End – which was the title of my first TEDx Talk!  I gave my TEDx Talk this April, and finally…it’s out!

Giving the talk was a thrilling experience.  Even being such a shameless musical theatre ham that I am, this was the most nervous I’ve ever been.  Actually, I didn’t realize how nervous I was until I was done…and I started basically hyperventilating!

In fact, the theme of this year’s TEDx at Syracuse University happens to be…Glitch.

Check out my talk here:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/0x5KtBAW2EI

What would you define as a “glitch?”

Here’s one dictionary definition:

Glitch: suffer a sudden malfunction or irregularity.
Glitch a minor problem that causes a temporary setback

I think the better question is, who hasn’t had a glitch in life?

WHAT’S YOUR GLITCH?

I’d define a “glitch” as a detour – you know, something in life that doesn’t go as you expect.  Nobody expects a detour to happen, in life. It’s what happens when we think we have things planned and all figured out…and then we’re thrown a curveball.

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I’m excited about the “Glitch” theme for this year’s TEDx.  What is life without the imperfections, the “malfunctions” and “irregularities” in life to keep us on our toes and pushing us to learn, change, adapt and grow?

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THE FIVE BEST THINGS ABOUT GLITCHES

We all experience “glitches” in life.  Here are five reasons why “GLITCH” might be the best TEDx theme ever.

1.) GLITCHES GIVE US A CHANCE TO REVISIT AND REVISE.

When we spot an “imperfection,” we’re forced to pause and give it more careful thought.  We’re challenged to work on something that we might have glossed over or might have easily overlooked.  Glitches demand attention, a different approach, a new way ofproblem-solving.

2.) GLITCHES GIVE US CHARACTER.

In a world of sameness and uniformity, it’s the mistakes that are our uniqueness.  Our “flaws” allow us to stand out.  A glitch is individuality – a mistake that’s unmistakably you.

3.) GLITCHES MAKE US WHO WE ARE.

What glitches and detours force us to do is explore new opportunities. When we can’t go in the direction we anticipated, we’ve got to switch gears and adapt. We have to resource inner strengths that we never knew we were capable of accessing. When we achieve the “unthinkable”, we discover who we really are.

4.) GLITCHES MAKE OUR STORIES.

Think of a favorite adventure movie.  Every good plot has an unexpected twist of events.  If life went exactly as you planned, where would the excitement be? The best stories the ones with surprising “glitches” and turns.  Glitches lead to discovery, epiphanies happy accidents.  Did you know that potato chips were invented by a glitch?

5.) GLITCHES CONNECT US.

We all have things in life that don’t go as we expect. We all make mistakes and experience “failure.” The more we share our “glitches”, the more we realize we’re not alone – and there is strength built in community. The world of “glitches” is a world of uniqueness, empathy, compassion and change.

Bonus reason?  Glitch is a pretty fun word to say.

GLITCHES HAVE AN “UPSIDE.”

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Glitches allow us to welcome the unexpected change in our “thought-out” life and see what opportunities may arise.

I’m living proof that a glitch can lead to unexpected blessings. If I took away all of the setbacks, hurdles, frustrations and glitches, I wouldn’t be who I am today…giving aTEDx Talk on glitches.

Glitches are most certainly happy, liberating and open-ended discoveries.

A “glitch” is not a dead end.

We just have to keep going long enough to reach a clearing to find the artistic nooks and crannies along that happy accident.

When you feel like you’ve made a glitch, you may not know what to do next, but that’s okay.  Sometimes the best thing is to show up and follow through.

Some glitches don’t go away.  Even with wounds that still haven’t healed – and that’s not a metaphor – I’m still on the road.  That road –uncertain, honestly, terrifying at times – can lead to the most beautiful flowers you’ll ever find.

Every little twist and turn has made me who I am.  And I like who I am.

There is nothing so dangerous about a glitch.  Relax!  Glitches can turn into flashes of insight, making room for new discoveries to flow in. Love is what we are.  Fear is what we learn.  Now, learn to love your glitches, and see where that takes you.

So don’t be afraid … Follow life’s glitches and enjoy the flowers along the way

HOW CAN YOU MAKE A “GLITCH” TODAY?

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 All artwork was created by Amy. Learn about her mental health advocacy programs for students, and find out how to take part in the #LoveMyDetour movement, striving to create compassion through stories.

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One Reply to “Why My TEDx Talk Was Glitch: Loving Our Detours, Our Glitches”

  1. Sara says:

    Wow! I love your Tedx Talk, you have so much perspective on your experiences. That’s the incredible thing about looking back at the things that have happened in our lives. We can learn from it or let it kind of eat us up. Some days the acceptance comes and goes, but the further you push forward, I’ve found acceptance grows and grows.


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