The Possibility of Cognitive Kindness | Karen Yu | TEDxUniversityoftheSouth


Our minds are among our most valuable individual and collective resources, and yet we often don’t treat them that way. Karen Yu offers cognitive kindness as a way forward, inviting us to consider how we might be more cognitively kind in all that we do and design, and why it matters. Karen Yu is inspired by the possibilities and potential of each person, place, and thing. That’s what explains in part her love of weddings, children, commencements, introducing and connecting people, and interacting with students. Dr. Yu earned her B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from MIT and her Ph.D. in Psychology from Vanderbilt University. Among other things, she is a daughter, sister, spouse, and parent, and a professor of psychology at the University of the South, where many of her efforts have been guided by student interests. Her current scholarship focuses on the possibilities inherent in the option generation phase of decision making. She co-authors the blog “Choice Matters” at Psychology Today, and is contemplating a cognitively kind book on cognitive kindness. In addition to possibilities and potential, she also loves peach pie, peonies, and people who truly listen. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at