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Home » Don’t Believe Everything You Think: Lauren Weinstein (Full Transcript)

Don’t Believe Everything You Think: Lauren Weinstein (Full Transcript)

Lauren Weinstein at TEDxPaloAlto

Following is the full text and summary of Stanford lecturer Lauren Weinstein’s talk titled “Don’t Believe Everything You Think” at TEDxPaloAlto conference. This talk focuses on how to break free from limiting beliefs.


This elephant has incredible strength. She can uproot a tree with her trunk alone. Yet she will remain in captivity, held by only a light rope. Despite her ability to easily break away, she doesn’t even try.


It starts when she is young. She is first tied down when she is small and not yet strong enough to break the rope. She will try at first, try as hard as she can to break free, and try and try, but eventually realize she can’t.

Suddenly, something attaches itself to her that is stronger than any rope or chain or fence. It’s the belief that she can’t break free. It’s this belief that holds her back — despite her ability.

I’ve had these same beliefs — you may have too — beliefs that held me back, beliefs that led me to feel unfulfilled in my work, to struggle in my relationships and to live a life that was far from the one I am living now.

It was only when I became aware of my ropes and actively pulled against them that I found myself in a different reality.


Don’t believe everything you think.

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