Prioritize personal growth.
If there’s anything 2020 proved, it’s that taking time to nurture your overall well-being is key — especially when the WFH life continues to drag on. Even the content you consume can affect your day-to-day mood. Just like a romantic comedy can turn you into a sappy puddle of emotions, inspiring podcasts can motivate you to prioritize your happiness and personal growth.
Consider sprinkling some inspirational podcasts into your go-to mix of the latest true crime stories and comedy channels for a boost of positivity and motivation. Whether you’re grappling with your identity, looking to make a major career pivot, or simply seeking entertainment to drown out the dullness of stay-at-home life, turning to some uplifting listens can teach you how to navigate everyday struggles, big or small.
While Brené Brown’s Unlocking Us and On Being with Krista Tippett are both must listens for awe-inspiring wisdom, there are countless other positive options to stream out there — both long-established series and those that are up-and-coming hidden gems. Here’s a list of the best inspirational podcasts that can inspire you to live your best despite the challenges 2021 may bring.
Before Hillary Kerr co-founded digital media brand Who What Wear, she was a journalist and freelance writer. Each episode of Second Life dives into stories of women who — like Kerr — made pretty drastic career pivots. The podcast’s ultimate takeaway? Career possibilities are endless, and there’s always a chance to pursue that one passion you’ve always tucked away, regardless of your age.
The purpose of most successful podcasts is to simulate a conversation between the hosts and audience. And Black Girl Podcast definitely achieves this. Tuning in every Monday feels like a catch-up sesh with some of your closest friends as you learn more about yourself through their wide range of topics.
Hosted by five BFFs in media, including the principal videographer on Vice President Harris’ former campaign, the show explores topics from everyday WFH annoyances to the impacts Black women face when conforming to white beauty standards. Recent guests include documentary filmmaker Dawn Porter of “The Way I See It” and two creative forces behind Beyonce’s “Black is King.”
While you may already subscribe to theSkimm’s daily newsletter, the co-founders and co-CEOs, Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg, also host a podcast every week. They chat with a range of notable figures like Tamron Hall and Cindy Crawford about life’s unexpected moments and career trajectories that look more zigzagged than linear. The podcast’s ultimate, uplifting message? The road to success, while sometimes rocky, doesn’t define you.
Since On Being with Krista Tippett is widely beloved by fans, the underrated This Movie Changed Me podcast from the same studio can oftentimes get overlooked. Host Lily Percy interviews movie enthusiasts every episode about how a movie inspired their formative lives. In its third and final season, the show will explore “Lady Bird,” “The Color Purple,” and “Selena,” among other classics both old and new.
If you’re a Modern Love fan, you’ll swoon over Love Letters. Hosted by The Boston Globe’s advice columnist Meredith Goldstein, the podcast focuses on real-life relationships be it life-long romances or lessons about how Buffy the Vampire Slayer taught her about love. While some stories feature heartbreak, the overall takeaways are uplifting and leave the audience with new wisdom.
The theme of the new season is (refreshingly) new beginnings. The best part about the show? You can email the producers your own story and possibly be featured — talk about a podcast-lover’s absolute dream.
Even though the pandemic has banished travel from most to-do lists, planning for your next trip (whenever that may be) can inspire you to take a closer look at your finances. Hosted by author and travel writer Danielle Desir, The Thought Card provides listeners with tools to financially plan travel and grow wealth. Face it: Everyone needs a long vacay when post-pandemic life arrives. Listening to Desir’s episodes can motivate you to feel prepared for globe-trotting when the time comes.
Her Millennial Wealth Builders series also provides tips through stories of women of color earning and saving responsibly.
Adulting is hard. This podcast will teach you that you’re not alone in feeling those growing pains. Hosts Jade and Keia sit at the kitchen table to discuss topics like learning from titans like Cicely Tyson and better ways to navigate daily routines with intention. If you’re in need of tips for decompressing, the hosts are always sharing ways to make time for yourself through relaxed conversations that don’t shy away from keeping it real.
From self-care to gentle affirmations, Black Girl in Om cultivates a safe space for women of color to nurture their individual wellness journeys. The host, wellness expert and yoga guide Lauren Ash, created the podcast since Black women and yoga teachers are oftentimes less well represented in the wellness field.
Ash’s “spirit-centered” guests provide tips for uplifting and building solidarity with Black women through conscious conversations.
In a generation of gifted kid burnout, failure never seems to be an option. In How To Fail, Elizabeth Day is here to tell you it actually is. Recent guests include Jameela Jamil, Jamie Dornan, and Bassel Deeb, whose unique backgrounds prove that failure is underrated. In each episode, Day reveals how missteps are not only universal, but necessary for success. This podcast can help shift your preconceived mindset when it comes to setbacks.
Therapist and theologian Matthias Roberts is here to help if you’re in the LGBTQ community and searching for spiritual belonging. In this truly unique podcast, Roberts uses his expertise to help the audience think deeper about their identity and beliefs. He interviews mental health professionals and other theologians, including therapist Candice Czubernat, founder of The Christian Closet, an LGBTQ-counseling organization for affirmation and growth.
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