My love for podcasts is not a new one, but for a long time, it was a hobby that was somewhat under the radar: I would tell my friends about the new podcast I was listening to, and they would stare blankly at me, not sure what I was talking about! Recently, though, it seems like podcasts are becoming much more mainstream. With their rise in popularity has come a whole new crop of excellent shows! There are podcasts for every interest and demographic, and I listen to a wide range of them. Some are simply entertaining, others are more educational or action-oriented. Lately, I’ve been particularly drawn to podcasts that add a dose of inspiration to my day. Here are three favorites that never fail to add that extra jolt of encouragement.
I think that most people have—or at least proclaim to have—a lofty set of principles, but too often we walk through our daily lives without giving a second thought as to whether or not we are actually living according to those values. Jess Lively wants her listeners to define their values, and then create values-based intentions that will serve as a roadmap to a joyful and fulfilling life. In each week’s show Jess interviews a different guest, from successful businessmen to stay-at-home-moms, and everything in between. Her interviewees come from diverse backgrounds, but they share a common thread of living out their values in their personal and professional lives. The Lively Show has introduced me to a number of great bloggers and intriguing businesses, but more importantly, the guests’ stories provide an excellent model for the way I want to live my own life. Jess is a thoughtful interviewer who isn’t afraid to dig down deep with her guests. Her own joy and personal set of values permeate every aspect of the podcast, making her show a particularly uplifting listening experience.
I’m only a few months into this whole “mom” thing, but from day I found out I was pregnant, motherhood has been fraught with doubts and insecurities. I recognize that there is no such thing as the perfect mom, and yet I’m never quite able to silence the nagging voice that tells me I’m simply not good enough. I’m not alone in these feelings, which is why Kat Lee began a podcast to encourage moms as we “take on the most challenging job around.” Through practical suggestions and interviews with other women, Kat reminds her listeners that we are capable and qualified to be exactly the moms that our kids need us to be. Kat’s guests are interesting and inspiring, and Kat herself is genuine, warm, and encouraging, providing just the boost this mama needs to get through her day!
I’ve yet to read anything by Gretchen Rubin (although at least three of her books are on my TBR List), but after listening to her recent interview with Shawn Stevenson, I immediately headed to iTunes to download the podcast that Gretchen and her sister, Elizabeth, started last February. I’ve been working my way through their past episodes and am officially hooked! Each week the sisters discuss ways to build happier habits into everyday life. They offer quick and easy tips to try at home, answer listener questions, and occasionally interview guests. Their suggestions for improved happiness are backed by science, as well as by the sisters’ personal experiences. Each episode ends with Gretchen and Elizabeth giving themselves happiness demerits and gold stars, an awesome practice that I’ve actually begun to implement myself in my daily journaling. Gretchen and Elizabeth are encouraging, relatable, and a lot of fun. I can’t wait to hear more from these two!
Have you gotten onto the podcast bandwagon yet? What shows do you listen to that add a touch of inspiration and encouragement to your day?