My Friend, the Podcast
It would not be overdramatic for me to claim that podcasts have massively shaped and altered the course of my life. I have a vague memory of my first; I was aboard a train destined for London Waterloo, hurtling through the Hampshire countryside with the colours of autumn beginning to appear outside. I was restless, down, anxious and just wanted something in my headphones to distract me from these feelings. Music wasn’t doing the trick so I opted for a random Joe Rogan Experience podcast I searched for on ITunes, knowing of Joe Rogan through his commentary with the UFC. I had no real pre-conception of what this might be, what might be discussed and whether or not I’d actually enjoy it. To begin with I struggled to pay attention as the words were struggling to compete with my ever chattering and distracted mind. But then somewhere just south of the Greater London area, I noticed that I had started to tune in and was now alert to what was being discussed. Thoughts were exchanged on, amongst others, the self, personal improvement, goal setting, nutrition, physical activity and the power of the mind. It’s as if I could feel the neurons in my brain firing back up after a long stretch of inactivity; this was like the most useful therapy session I’d ever had. I was hooked.
And I still am, to this day. Podcasts for me now act as those five people and many more, given that I’m subscribed to about 30 of them. Though slightly different in content and delivery, these all tend to have a general common theme; to disseminate and discuss information on a number of topics in order to better ourselves as human beings and the societies in which we live. We are spoilt in the 21st century. With the click or tap of a button we have instant access to ideas being shared on the other side of world without any fear of censorship or restriction. Add to this that the majority of podcasts bring on an assortment of guests and speakers, we really are experiencing information in a way that human beings have never been able to. And I am thankful for this. At points in my life I’ve needed some encouragement, a kick up the backside, a reality check or some inspiration and podcasts have provided me with this. What I’ve lacked in physical presence I’ve been able to find right there in my headphones. From an educational perspective, too, podcasts are my go to resource if I now want to learn about something. From fiction writing to song writing and from Zen practice to marathon running, a quick podcast search has more often than not revealed a wealth of resources from which to learn and from which to succeed.
I don’t think I could even fathom a guess at the number of hours I’ve spent with some of these podcast hosts, but it’s certainly not insignificant. I have no scientific data to go on here but anecdotally speaking I can unambiguously say that the introduction of certain podcasts to my life has helped my health and wellbeing and has most certainly changed my perspective and outlook on life for the better. So just a final word of thanks to all the podcasts I’ve had the pleasure of listening to over the years, for rooting for me when I’ve perhaps needed it the most and for being one or more of the five people I’ve so often needed to surround myself with.
All good things,
One Thinking Man
I’m not one to preach but positive and informative resources need to be promoted in this day and age and so for that reason I've included just a few links below to some of my recent podcast highlights on a number of subject areas. If you've yet to take the plunge then do just be warned; you will have a host of podcasts vying for the storage space on your IPhone and you will likely need to buy a new one in order to cope with the demand! Oh, and if you've got some favourites that I haven’t mentioned then please do post a comment and share with us all what you've been listening to.
It’s hard to whittle these ones down to one particular genre; they cover many, but all are enlightening and inspirational listens designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge to move forward in various areas of your life:
Fitness & Nutrition
The Music Business