So one of my absolutely favourite discoveries of this past year has been podcasts and audio books – especially when it comes to my pursuits of wellness and personal growth! I had never really considered these as an avenue of learning before, because I truly love books and I believe there is so much to be gained from having a physical copy that you can highlight and write in (yes, I am that reader – but only when I am trying to learn!), but you can only read so many books at once (believe me, I’ve tried!) and some days you just need to mix things up.
Cue: podcasts! It’s like having a great friend, or advice columnist, in your pocket! Plus it makes all the sucky parts of adulting (read: laundry, dishes, cleaning the bathroom, etc.) much more tolerable.
I had actually started listening to podcasts a couple years ago after Z had been into them for a quite a while. We were travelling across B.C. at the time, and I needed something to pass the time while we were busing. I stumbled across Beautiful/Anonymous, which blew my mind and ended up being the first podcast I became really addicted to (I still highly recommend it!).
It wasn’t until a year or two later, however, that I really began diving into my own wellness. I had no idea there were so many personal development podcasts out there! From everything such as money to self-help to mindset to pep talks to mental health to overcoming/understanding trauma to being a girl boss… there are so many other people out there, on a similar journey to you, who have already done the work and are willing to share their insights! It’s so amazing! And they’re all free! (Ultimate adulting win!)
Anyways, these are my favourite personal development/growth podcasts:
“Earn Your Happy”, with Lori Harder
Lori Harder’s podcast is amazing for getting you pumped up to go out of your comfort zone, take a risk, and finally do that thing you’ve been thinking about for years! She employs Real Talk, as well as vulnerability, and is an ultimate Girl Boss. I’m not gunna lie, I initially found her intro to be a bit much… but now I find myself chanting along with conviction! Maybe it’s brainwashing at its finest, but I’m not mad about it – that intro makes me feel amazing! If you’re more of a ‘book person’, her book, “A Tribe Called Bliss” is supposed to be a really great insight into female empowerment, friendships, and connection.
“Jen Gotch is Ok… Sometimes”, with Jen Gotch
Oh my goodness, I want Jen Gotch to be my best friend/fairy godmother. She has an amazing perspective on life, she’s done the work, and she shares it in a really fun and accessible way. Jen is an amazing advocate and resource for mental health strategies (she talks candidly about her experiences with clinical depression, anxiety, and Bipolar II), and she’s another major Girl Boss as the creator of Ban.Do (their agendas are seriously my favourite – and I am the type of person who has very high standards for planners!)… plus you will quickly fall in love with her parents, as they are often guest hosts/commentators. Jen Gotch is seriously the spirit guide I need in my life, and wish I had encountered her years ago… also, if you’re any sort of design-junkie/connoisseur/appreciator/voyeur/enteryourpreferreddescriptionhere, you will appreciate her work on some level.
P.S. She has a book coming out too! Keep your eyes peeled!
“Your Kickass Life”, with Andrea Owen
Okay, so I come and go from this one. I actually discovered Andrea through the “Earn Your Happy Podcast”, really loved her episode, forgot about it, and rediscovered her as I was
obsessively going through all Brené Brown’s work, and looking into how to train with her shame perspective (I promise there will be many posts to come on Brené Brown and how she’s changed my life/I’m slightly obsessed with her/I’m still hoping she’ll adopt me someday) and realized Andrea Owen was the same person I had just been listening to with Lori Harder, and that she had her own podcast! Andrea is trained through Brené Brown’s perspectives on shame and vulnerability as a life coach, she is an advocate for addiction recovery, and she seems to focus on shame and perfectionism. She has two books, “52 Ways to Live Your Kickass Life” and “How to Stop Feeling Like Shit”.
“The Highest Self Podcast”, with Sahara Rose
Okay, so – admittedly, if you’re not already interested in yoga or Ayurveda or at least a little woo-woo, you should probably just skip this one until you’re open to it. Sahara Rose is of Indian descent, obsessed with Deepak Chopra, and an expert in nutrition and Aruveydic science (the oldest, yogi-based, template for types of people and their needs). She has written two books, the most recent of which is a plant-based Aruveydic cookbook. Basically, she helps you identify your ” Mind-Body type” (think Myers-Briggs or Enneagrams, but… yoga-ish..) and then dial in your nutrition, and dharma (loosely translated: purpose or intention), based on your dosha/mind-body type. For reference, if you look up Aruveydic doshas, I tend to be a vata-kapha… feel free to agree or disagree, I’d love to have the discussion! Anyways, lately she’s been serving up some Real Talk on abundance and putting in the work. If you’re a little “woo-woo”, into yoga, a Girl Boss, and like “Earn Your Happy”, I think she’ll be your jam.
“Super Soul Sundays”, with Oprah (duh)
Um… I don’t really think I need to explain this one. Oprah is basically She, our God and Saviour, I think you can handle this one on your own. Just take my word that it’s good. I don’t listen to it religiously, but it rarely disappoints.
“From the Heart – Conversations with Yoga Girl”, with Rachel Brathen
What I love about this podcast is that Rachel doesn’t pretend to have it all figured out already. She’s always entirely human and vulnerable, and her podcast truly makes you feel like you’re just catching up with a friend. She has also done her work, but she’s very openly still working through it. She’s another heart-based Girl Boss who’s looking to make a change in the world, and I really respect that. I also really respect her open conversation about being a woman in this world, living with privilege, navigating mental health and trauma, motherhood, and just life in general. It’s actually not super yoga-y, except for the big, centering breath at the beginning of the episodes… and let’s be honest, we could all use a big breath now and then.
I don’t listen to any of these religiously, they don’t all always resonate with me, but they have all tremendously helped me in different ways. There are times where I go months without listening to some of them because I found something really off-putting, and there are times when I go months without missing the weekly episode. Either way, I truly believe that if you are serious about personal growth and healing, you have to seek out perspectives that both challenge and align with you, and that you have to be forced to examine your current perceptions. These podcasts help me do that, and I hope that they might be the same for you.
Let me know if any of these resonated with you or helped you, and if you have any other suggestions! I’m always looking for new perspectives!
With love and gratitude,