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Inside Looking Out: The Life of Josh Encarnacion

With many inspirational speakers and ideas worth spreading, TEDxNewBedford was nothing less than a success. It was a unique experience absorbing all the information TEDxNB had to offer. After the event I was left curious to know more about the speakers who had such an impact on their audience. I was able to reach out to one of the speakers, Josh Encarnacion, who spoke upon redefining the way we believe in people. From his personal life to his professional career, his responses express a true passion for not only believing in yourself but in others as well:

josh encarnacion

TEDx Speakers Michael Schwartz, Josh Encarnacion, and Jay O’Hara

What inspires you?

I’m inspired by people who can give with absolutely no expectations for self in return. These are the people who make the world a better place. Think of loving parents – they care for their children and find joy in the act of sacrifice knowing the result will be less for them and more for their child. This is the same with teachers, coaches, and mentors who care enough to build great professionals, athletes, entertainers, and overall, great people. It inspires me because I find it SO HARD TO DO! I want so much for my life that I forget to want for the life of the people around me, and I know I’m not the only one who suffers this way. However, if we continue to celebrate those who give themselves away to others, with interests in benefiting others, then we’ll grow selfless people, leaders, communities, businesses, and hopefully, a selfless world.

What do you do in your downtime?

In my down time, I do a lot to keep my health intact and re-charge. I like to break health down into 4 categories:
• Mental Health – Reading, journaling, studying, meditating, watching Netflix to distract my mind lol
• Emotional Health – Calling family, laughing with friends, partying hard, eating out/grabbing coffee with co-workers
• Physical Health – Eating healthy foods, jogging, lifting weights, yoga, sleeping,
• Spiritual Health: Writing out what I’m grateful for, giving thanks for being alive.

What are your favorite productivity tips or hacks?

My favorite productivity hack is journaling. I’m a firm believer in the thought that everything we create is created twice, once in our mind & once in reality. If we journal or write our ideas down we are finalizing the first draft of what we envision or what we want to get done. Most times, what we are thinking about is something we care about and when we write about it, we capture the blueprint! Step 1!

What was your favorite part about TEDx?

My favorite part about TEDx was sharing the stage with such a great group of speakers! I watch TED talks all the time, and with every new talk, I wonder what it would be like to sit for coffee with the various speakers. I live by the saying “people are just people”, which reminds me to let go of my fear of approaching people when they have a fancy title or celebrity status, so introducing myself to the fellow speakers was easy, but saying goodbye WAS SO HARD. They are all so interesting, inspiring, and have so much to share. Big shout out to Erik Andrade, Mike Rocha, Jay O’Hara, Mike Schwartz, and Mona Patel – amazing people, make sure to watch their amazing talks!

Could you tell us about the process you went through to create your speech?

Writing my speech was a 2 year process. I’ve had this burning desire to share my idea of “Redefining the way we believe in people” since the Winter of 2014. During my talk, I speak about a mentor who really helped me grow as a person. During the Winter of 2014, I was reflecting on what he did specifically to help me out and I began trying to capture his actions in a way that others can replicate, hoping to grow more mentors who help more people. I wrote about the lessons I learned from him every day for months (STILL DO!) and when I was connected with Dolores the Summer of 2015, she asked if I had an idea to share, I knew exactly what to say. After it was confirmed that I was going to be speaking at TEDxNB the process was a little more organized. In short, I wrote my idea in 1 line, then asked myself why it was important/ beneficial to me and to others, explained how I came to the idea, and defined what others can do to live the idea if they also found it to be important/beneficial. After having these pieces written out, I wrote a 3 page speech, recorded it for timing, and shared it with 15 friends for grammar and structure checks. I memorized the speech by practicing it every other day for 4 weeks, and then I stopped looking at it 2 weeks before the talk to practice remembering the speech and focused on delivering it with emotion.

What do you hope people took away from your talk?

I hope those who watch my talk will realize how powerful we can be when we stop judging people who are suffering from problems we don’t understand, and instead, start helping those same grow. We can help others grow by being supportive, by believing in them in a new way. The old way to believe in someone is by setting expectations for them and only rewarding them when they meet those expectations – a selfish commitment to their achievements. My proposal for a new way to believe in someone is to encourage them to think better, empower them with an understanding that’ll help them feel better, and engage them in acts that will allow them to do better – a selfless commitment to their growth and learning.

Did you take anything away from TEDx?

YES! So much. Aside from the wonderful lessons learned by listening to the fellow talks, and the amazing insights learned from having Dolores (the organizer) as a speaking coach, I learned that people want to be inspired and want to support people who share inspiring ideas. The energy in the Zeiterion the night of TEDxNB was out of this world. 1,200 people from the New Bedford gave up a Friday night to support our ideas, for that I am forever grateful to the city of New Bedford, the TEDxNB organizing team, and the TED brand. Events like this remind me how awesome it is to be a human :)


Check out Josh’s full talk from TEDxNewBedford below:

Sarah Riley
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  1. Anaya Pena on December 15, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    This is amazing. Congratulations.

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