For most of my “internet career” (by which I mean, the days I would just sit in front of my computer and fall down the rabbit hole), I’ve had the incredible ability to sit in front of YouTube and not move for hours.
It started with dancing videos. Then it moved onto beauty videos. I’ve devoured TED talks and seen some amazing spoken word poetry. And as lame as it sounds, some of these videos have really changed my life. From teaching me pretty important skills, to making me laugh and building inside inside jokes with my friends, to changing the way I look at the world, YouTube has had the ability to make me a whole new person over and over again. Here are some of the top YouTube videos that have changed my life, and will change yours, too:
Westmoore Pom’s 2009 Nationals Routine
Okay, so this isn’t a YouTube video, but that’s because this is old AF and has been taken down because of copyright issues (oops). This dance is what started my obsession with watching dance videos, which was not only an integral part of my adolescence, but as my development as an artist. Westmoore’s coach, Emily Shock, has been a huge inspiration to me as a dancer, writer, thinker, person. And this routine (which I originally saw as a rehearsal in their studio) was my first one. Nothing would ever be the same after this.
Kayley Melissa Halo Curls
Not every YouTube video I’ve watched has been about inspiration – a lot of them have actually been about practicality! While I’ve poured over countless beauty videos and review/hauls (which have, in fairness, led to the purchase of some holy grail items), no video has enhanced my life more than Kayley Melissa’s Halo Curls video. I literally do this every time I wash my hair now. This method gives me the prettiest curls ever without having to use heat or spend a crazy amount of time. What. A. Life-changer.
It’s been nine years and this video still makes me cry-laugh every single time. Love Letters (a man’s love affair with carbs) is my go-to funny YouTube video, and I have shown it to all of my friends who need a laugh. While most viral videos have by now gotten pretty old and stale, this one is still priceless. It’s permeated all of my life, spicing up my friendships with some fantastically quotable moments.
Sarah Kay’s TED Talk, “If I Should Have A Daughter”
I’m definitely not the only person to obsess over this video. Sarah Kaye is absolutely mesmerizing and has you captivated from the get-go. Her message about having a daughter is beautiful. But what really gets me is just the skill with which she writes her poetry. As someone who really tapped into her love for writing by using poetry as a coping mechanism, that is ultimately what I’m going to take note of. Sarah Kay’s poetry has influenced me so much as an artist, and this is kind of the most well-known that she has on YouTube.