With over 700,00 podcasts produced to date, it would be impossible to binge or enjoy them all. Below are five that are currently producing intriguing and worthwhile content. Leaving out the ever-popular genre of true crime podcasts, the following are worth a listen whether it be for only a few episodes or an entire season.
The Jocko Podcast John Gretton "Jocko" Willink is a retired United States Navy SEAL, the commander of Team THREE Task Unit Bruiser. After multiple deployments to Asia, the Middle East and Europe, Willink became a Navy SEAL instructor on the West Coast, has a silver star, a bronze star, co-wrote two books, and now hosts a podcast. After 20 years of service, retiring in 2010, this guy is no joke. Along with Echo Charles, a friend and fellow Brazilian jiu jitsu practitioner, The Jocko Podcast focuses on leadership, morale, setting standards and goals and achieving them. However; these messages are not delivered in the usual self-help motivational speaker way but rather hammered home by way of Willink’s direct tone and focus on discipline as the key to success over the use of simple motivation.
If you are looking to overcome obstacles in your professional life, this is the podcast for you, especially if new age techniques or holistic approaches have left you in the same rut.
10% Happier with Dan Harris Dan Harris had a panic attack on live television, but instead of allowing that to sink him into a shame spiral, he turned it into a best-selling book and a widely listened to podcast. He investigated and researched meditation, the history, and it’s teachers. In doing so he began to appreciate and make use of what he learned, specifically the meditative practice of watching your breath. This information proved to be helpful in his personal and professional life. Seeking enlightenment could indeed be coupled with intense drive and ambition. Harris interviews others, who like him, practice mediation for their personal betterment. His hope is to lead others who also like him, may be skeptical of the benefits of meditation, to a better understanding and ultimately a less stressful life.
Anxious and/or stressed, this podcast can help you realize and embrace the benefits of bringing meditation into your life.
The Beautiful Brain A quick but thorough and gut-wrenching four-parter, this podcast explores CTE, otherwise known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a brain disease caused by multiple blows to the head. CTE is usually acquired while playing sports such as a football and rugby for multiple seasons. The Beautiful Brain focuses on Jeff Astle, a footballer for West Bromwich Albion in the 60’s and 70's who was diagnosed with dementia at the young age of 54 and died 5 years later in 2002. An autopsy proved that Astle’s death was due to an “industrial disease” - that industry was football. Many stories have since been written and movies made about this occurrence (the well-known Concussion with Will Smith focused on Dr. Bennet Omalu, the first to fight the NFL when they tried to suppress his CTE research). Hana Walker-Brown interviews Astle’s wife Laraine, daughter Dawn, Dr. Bennet Omalu, and neuropathologist Dr. Ann McKee. Dr. McKee discusses how the population is largely aware of this issue, but getting the sporting institutions to recognize and change their safety regulations has become a Sisyphean task. Leaving no stone un-turned in each episode, Walker-Brown also uses the utmost care reporting stories that include interviews with domestic abuse victims, another symptom of the disease. Sometimes hard to hear but always impeccably researched, The Beautiful brain is a thoughtful look into all things CTE-related.
If you are interested in an industry’s failure to protect those directly linked with it’s ongoing popularity or how sensitive our brains are, this podcast will prove very interesting.
Armchair Expert with Dax Shepherd
Focusing on the challenges of everyday life, Dax Shepherd fancies himself an armchair expert in the vast world of bettering our understanding of ourselves and thus bettering our own lives. Appreciating the vulnerability and honesty that people use when divulging their experiences, Shepherd interviews people open to discussing their short comings or challenges faced and overcome. Armchair Expert is truly funny while maintaining a genuine nature that lends itself to tears and laughter. Shepherd speaks with actors, scientists, therapists, authors, and musicians (among others) in an honest and thoughtful way to better understand “the messiness of humans” in its entirety.
Take a listen if you want to confirm that you are not the only one going through the tests and trying emotions of everyday life as a human being.
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Now now, there is no need to wake up at some ungodly hour in order to be the CEO of the next Apple or Tesla, but perfecting the morning schedule that suits you can help with productivity, diet, mental and physical health.
You wake up every morning, get dressed, caffeinate, feed yourself, and get to work - throughout this Groundhogs Day process you find yourself thinking about that passion project or small online business you wish you could dive deeper into.