About a year ago, I opened my Podcasts application for the first time ever. I had never listened to a podcast before, and never used to consume content in such a way. Radio didn’t appeal to me, so when I was driving or commuting to work for example, I would listen to music on Spotify.
I remember the first podcast episode I listened to, it was an episode of La Poudre, a french podcast hosted by the very talented Lauren Bastide, who was interviewing Garance Doré, the french fashion blogger who made it in America and now runs the very successful Studio Doré.
It was the beginning of a passionate love story, not only with La Poudre, but with podcasts in general, and listening to people talk and tell me stories, which also led me to audio books (more on this later).
These days, a week doesn’t go by where I don’t listen to about 2-3 hours of podcasts at the very minimum. Podcasts have expanded my horizons and brought a new wealth of knowledge into my life.
If you’re not into podcasts yourself, here is why I would highly recommend that you try:
- Make repetitive and mindless things of your everyday life more enjoyable
Think about how much time you spend every week commuting, driving, grocery shopping, doing your laundry, cleaning your house, washing your dishes, etc. This is usually a time when we are doing something with our brain on auto-pilot, when we don’t need to actively think about what we are doing.
Listening to music is a good way to pass the time, but let me tell you that listening to podcasts is very different. It has changed the way I experience these “chores”. There is a kind of intimacy with podcasts that you won’t find with other forms of content. I am so much more engaged, I feel like I am learning something new every day, or learning to look at things with a different perspective.
Learning for me is such a joy, and I have finally found a way to add 2-5 hours of learning per week into my life without having to shift my schedule or make time for it. I just used this “down” time I already had, and made it into something awesome.
- Rekindle the love for long content
Reacquaint yourself with the idea of taking your time, enjoying a long form of content, slowing down (isn’t this what my blog is all about?). Podcast episodes are usually quite long – 45 minutes to an hour, sometimes 1.5 hour. In a day and age where our attention span is reducing more and more, where videos on social media are recommended to be 15 seconds or shorter to perform well, it is so refreshing to take the time to consume in depth content about one single topic, like we would enjoy reading a long book.
To give yourself the time to actually digest and process the information you’re given, without being harassed by countless ads fighting for your attention. Most podcasts only have advertising at the beginning, some of them in the middle, but you can easily skip it anyway with the help of the fast forward button.
- Feel like a child listening to a bedtime story again
There are a few different types of podcasts, and I have a special place in my heart for the ones that tell a story. They are similar to audio books in that way, only much shorter. I personally really enjoy murder mysteries and criminal investigations, and podcasts are the perfect way to listen to one, the way you would listen to your mum reading a story when you were a kid (hopefully not a murder mystery though).
Some people are truly gifted narrators – their voices can paint a picture better than some movies can, and unleash your imagination.
Audiobooks, while different from podcasts, are also a great way to make more time for “reading” in your life. Rediscover classic books, or try something new! I highly recommend the Harry Potter series read by the amazing Stephen Fry for a long car journey – tested and approved on our road trip from Cairns to Melbourne.
Here are my favourite times to listen to a podcast, from the moment I wake up, to the time I go to bed:
- When I make and eat breakfast
- When I brush my teeth, wash my face, put my makeup on
- Anytime I’m driving or commuting with public transport
- When grocery shopping
- When cleaning the house, doing the laundry, unpacking the dishwasher
- When I’m cooking
- When I’m walking or exercising (but not when I do yoga)
- When I do my hair
- When I’m waiting (at the doctor, the dentist, etc)
- ALL. THE. TIME.
I hope this article inspired you to open your Podcasts application for the first time ever!
Have you got favourite podcasts you’d recommend? I will share mine in the next article!