Right now, I spend 10+ hours each week commuting to and from work. Listening to radio and Spotify can get so-samey, so putting on a good podcast is a welcome chance to hear new perspectives, learn something and be entertained.
There's definitely a running theme here – inspirational ideas. Here are my 5 favourite podcasts I’m listening to this month.
1. Wild Ideas Worth Living, by Shelby Stanger
For anyone who loves adventure, travel, health and happiness, this is perfect. This podcast lands interviews with a whole host of people all connected to the outdoor world, from explorers to scientists, athletes and entrepreneurs and discusses how they transformed their mundane day-to-day lives to embark on their epic idea.
Whilst some stories seem impossible to achieve, sometimes hearing the more extreme ideas can push you to start taking the small steps to act on your idea, that now appears much more do-able in comparison.
Shelby Stanger, an avid surfer, is an awesome host. She quickly gets deep and meaningful but also asks the more practical questions, such as “how did you afford this?”, with answers often shattering the illusion that they had tens of thousands of pounds before setting off on their adventure. “Pick a date, stick to it, and just do it” was one of my favourite pieces of motivational advice.
✵ Favourite Episode: Rhonda Patrick
2. How I Built This with Guy Raz
This is fascinating insight into the ups and downs of creating your own company. It’s inspirational listening for anyone with entrepreneurial spirit. And even if you’re not interested in business, give it a go. These human stories will capture your attention.
Hosted by Guy Raz, he talks to those who have built, and continue to build their own companies, speaking with founders from tech, retail, food and loads more sectors. He often starts of by asking about their humble beginnings and where the idea came from, followed by the struggles to get their business of the ground, and then the breakthrough moment that made it the thriving, household name it is today.
The tone is light-hearted and entertaining; great for when you want a break from the more deep and thought-provoking speakers. And at 30-50 minutes, they're ideal to listen to on your commute. As you’d expect with an NPR broadcast, it’s really well produced, flows great and the sound is super-high quality. I especially loved the interviews with AirBnB and Instagram.
✵ Favourite Episode: Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia
3. Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations, by Oprah
Oprah’s guests include world leaders, authors, plus health and wellbeing professionals. They are all selected to uplift and inspire you through sharing their life lessons and pearls of wisdom.
As interviewees share their tough life stories, these conversations are a motivating reminder to not give up on the path to improve your outlook and wellbeing, whilst always remaining grateful for what you already have in life.
These podcasts haven’t been purposefully recorded, but have been compiled from Oprah’s interviews on SuperSoul Sunday. The shortest, at 20 minutes, doesn't get overly deep and leaves you craving more. Hopefully when they record new material, they’ll extend them to an hour in the future.
✵ Favourite Episode: Gretchen Rubin
4. Fit & Fearless
Focussed on fitness and body confidence, these 30-minute bite-sized podcasts are a down-to-earth, relatable reminder about what our bodies can achieve and the healthy way to get there.
Tally, Zanna and Vic are all Instagram bloggers, who together formed the GirlGains community. The girls share their different approaches to fitness, with a real focus on self-love, balance and encouraging girls to venture into weight training (aka the testosterzone!). Each week, they chat with different guests from the fields of fitness, nutrition and health who add their insight and perspective, but really the podcast is centred around the three founding girls experiences.
They’re honest and relatable and are super-excited to just be there. The podcast just launched in January 2018, so there’s only five episodes currently out, so subscribe and give it a go!
✵ Favourite Episode: Why weights make you badass, not bulky
5. Desert Island Discs
One of the best podcasts out there, its an obvious choice. This feature has been running for over 75 years, but it’s a timeless classic with over three-thousand episodes produced to date.
If you haven't heard of it, each week a well-known guest, called a 'castaway', is asked to choose eight songs, a book and a luxury item they would want to have with them if stranded on a desert island, with the conversation centered around this structure.
There is a huge variety of guests from David Attenborough to Ed Sheeran - but even if you haven’t previously heard of the person don’t dismiss it. Listening to the interviews of those more unknown, compared to the “celebrities” tend to be the episodes that become increasingly interesting as you learn more about an individuals life story.
Kirsty Young, the host, is brilliant at interviewing and elegantly asks questions about the harder, more sensitive issues. Just to note, the music on the podcast version is reduced to about 30 seconds per song, due to licensing issues.
✵ Favourite Episode: Sheryl Sandberg