I'm a podcast addict.
Since discovering this type of media a few years ago, I've voraciously consumed content faster than I thought possible. In this time, I've also experienced quantum leaps in my mental capacity, mindset, relationships and overall performance in life. Coincidence? I think not. Being a predominantly auditory learner (surprise, surprise...), I've always struggled to absorb concepts and connect ideas while reading text on a page. For me, it's almost like the act of reading itself requires too much of my brain power, limiting my ability to really integrate the information I'm consuming. This realization was life-changing for me and completely up-ended my approach to learning.
While auditory learners are definitely the group most likely to benefit from this type of media, I believe that everyone can gain a lot by incorporating carefully curated podcasts into their daily lives. Think about how long it takes to learn something, on your own, from a textbook. Now compare that to having a private tutor you admire, who is enthusiastic about the topic of study and gives you actionable items to help you apply what you've just learned to your daily life. Welcome to the world of podcasts.
In my experience, the enthusiasm and the action items are the keys to learning something at a deeper level. Enthusiasm conveys a "why", triggers an emotional power surge, and gives the brain a reason to want to absorb the information being presented to it. That additional power is required in order to form new neural connections and to keep strengthening them over time. Action items connect the new material to our personal reality, making abstract concepts tangible and allowing us to run our own experiments to test the validity or relevance in the context of our lives.
Podcasts give us VIP access to the greatest minds of our time, and distill much of their life's work and energy into an easily digestible format.
Ever heard the saying "you are a product of the 5 people you spend the most time with"? While the number might be a variable, I do very much believe in the underlying principle of that saying; we are a product of our environment. The field of epigenetics is providing substantial evidence that our environment influences us greatly by determining which of our genes are switched on or off. The people we surround ourselves with are a huge part of the environment that we create for ourselves, whether consciously or not. And that's awesome news, because it means that we can select our characteristics and personal attributes simply by surrounding ourselves with people we admire and want to emulate. This is made even easier by podcasts because they give us VIP access to the greatest minds of our time, and distill much of their life's work and energy into an easily digestible format.
We can select our characteristics and personal attributes simply by surrounding ourselves with people we admire and want to emulate.
Have I convinced you of the rad-ness of podcasts yet? If so, and you're wondering where to start your foray into this space, I do have some recommendations.
Some of my favourite podcasts, in no particular order:
1. The Aubrey Marcus Podcast
2. Bulletproof Radio
3. The School of Greatness
4. The Rich Roll Podcast
5. Sound Health Radio
6. The Tim Ferriss Show
The real beauty of podcasts is that you can have them playing while engaging in other, mindless activities. I love to have one in my ear as I'm running, driving, cooking, cleaning, sleeping...ok, not while sleeping, but I do use other auditory programs (binaural beats and other frequencies) to take advantage of that time as well. Think of these programs as just that. Programs. You are installing programs into your brain, and you can do it passively and easily. All it takes is making the choice to do it regularly.
If you're already a podcast listener, what are some of your favourites? How have they changed your life?