8 Great Podcasts

Even though I’ve really been into audiobooks lately, podcasts still hold a special place in my earbud-shaped heart (okay, that sounded weird). As a podcaster myself, I so appreciate the work involved in creating an episode focused on a topic that flows, a conversation that stays interesting, and well-crafted post-production (which is a bajillion times harder than it seems).

So? Here’s what I’m into lately, in no particular order, along with a good recommended starter episode of each.

Ask Science Mike

I’ve been a fan of Mike McHargue’s work since I first heard him several years ago as co-host of The Liturgists podcast. This is his other podcast, where he answers listeners’ questions, often about the intersection of faith and science.

Mike is brilliant, and each episode leaves me thinking.

• Notable episode: #159, The Art and Science of Changing Minds


Hurry Slowly

I can’t remember where I first heard of this podcast, but it’s been a regular in my queue for several months, and I really dig it.

Jocelyn Glei has a fantastic voice, made for audio, and the show’s broad topic of being “more productive, creative, and resilient through the simple act of slowing down” is totally up my alley.

• Notable episode: Creativity vs. Efficiency


World Story of the Day

This show is crazy-hard to find in apps, for some reason, but if you’re one of my patrons, you’ll remember it from our WRLD episode on China. It’s important for all of us to keep a finger on the pulse of world news, but it’s impossible to dive deep without instant overwhelm — there’s only so much we can each keep up with.

This show scratches the itch: short (about 5 minutes), daily episodes with one global story, released by NPR. Monday through Friday, you can learn about one news story of the day, from all over the world.

If you’d like to add this podcast to your player/app of choice, but haven’t found it in its directory, copy + paste this code manually (in Overcast, for example, tap the plus sign in the top right corner, then tap ‘Add URL’ in the top right corner, then paste):

https://www.npr.org/templates/rss/podlayer.php?id=1056

• Notable episode: Anything recent, such as Sweden’s Cashless Experiment


Without Fail

I’m a massive Alex Blumberg fan, and this new-ish show from his network, Gimlet, features his own candid conversations with entrepreneurs, artists, and other visionaries.

He focuses on both successes and failures, which is surprisingly refreshing, and Alex’s natural earnestness is evident: you find yourself caring about the topic simply because he cares.

• Notable episode: Ira Glass: The Man Who Launched a Thousand Podcasts


Losing 100 Pounds

The genre of this podcast is such a departure from my usual fare, but I can’t help myself. 14 years ago Corinne Crabtree lost 100 pounds, and she’s now a weight loss coach — in this show, she answers listener questions and covers common topics related to health and self-care.

She’s got an irreverent style: if language bothers you, you won’t like this show — there’s f-bombs aplenty (you’ve been warned). But she’s refreshingly funny and southern, and has heard all the excuses in the book so she cuts to the chase and gets to the point. Did I mention language?

• Notable episode: You want to lose weight? Listen up. Here’s how.


It’s Been a Minute

I’ve loved Sam Sanders since he was the main voice on NPR’s Politics Podcast, and this show of his is a delight. New episodes release on Tuesdays and Fridays, and I prefer the latter Weekly Wrap drops, where he has a rotation of two different guests and they discuss the week in news.

It’s both entertaining and insightful, and I love Who Said That?, the silly game he plays with his guests. I dare you not to tear up at the end of each episode, where loyal listeners call in and share the best part of their week.

• Notable episode: Whatever’s recent, since it’s news-sensitive — but try out the latest Weekly Wrap, or his interview with delightful chef Samin Nosrat.


What Works

My primary podcast-listening genres are actually business and writing: work education and inspiration, in other words. What Works is a new-to-me podcast with Tara McMullin, and I quickly became a fangirl (thanks to a friend in my mastermind group who said I’d like her).

I love her approach to business, her down-to-earth everywoman style, and her willingness to experiment, ask good questions, and continually evolve along with the landscape of small business.

I feel like we could sit down over drinks at the Lake McDonald Lodge in Glacier National Park.

• Notable episode: #168, Shifting Your Mindset To See Yourself and Your Small Business Differently


Fixed In Post

This is a brand-new show — as in, they’ve only released one episode, and it was this past week. But I listened to it, and it was a delight! I like most everything from Rabbit Room; their aesthetic, values, and approach to life and art are similar to mine, so I tend to trust whatever they release.

That’s the case with this show, as the two cohosts, John Barber and Pete Peterson, talk movies and what they’d do differently if they were in charge of it.

I look forward to following along and seeing what they release!

• Notable episode: Our Favorites of 2018


Somewhat ironically, this week on the pod I’ll be sharing a key ingredient I’m learning to balance with a steady diet of audiobooks and podcasts: silence. Look for it this Friday!

Your turn: What podcasts are you into lately?

p.s. 8 more great podcasts.

Reading Time:

4 minutes

 

 

 

27 Comments

  1. Meg

    I don’t doubt that these are all great podcasts as there is so much fantastic audio content available these days. I do, however, wish you’d included more ideas which represented voices from people of color. As a white person (which I am), it is easy to take a “I’m colorblind” approach, but this just results in ignoring the past (which we have so much to learn from) and the present (wherein equality is still no where near a reality due to systemic racism).

    • Elle

      As Tsh asked at the bottom of the post: “What podcasts are you into lately?” Instead of a lecture, let’s hear your recommendations. I’m interested and will check them out.

    • Kristin

      If you’re a Patreon supporter, you’ll see that Tsh often features people of color in her Wrld at Home segments. This is simply a list of recent favorite podcasts. I’d definitely love to hear any of yours that meet your description! Definitely needed.

      • Tsh Oxenreider

        I understand your perspective, Meg! Thanks for reminding readers here how important it is to continually remove our blinders, even if they’re unintentional.

        And Kristin is absolutely right; we feature POC all the time in The WRLD at Home.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Oh, and just to let you know, Sam Sanders (the host of It’s Been a Minute) is a Black man. Just an FYI! 🙂

      • Meg

        Hi Tsh. Yes, I did notice that Sam Sanders is a black man. And I’m not here to start any fights, just to share some ideas. I’ve particularly enjoyed Serial season 3 (not by a POC, but about many issue that affect those communities). I can also recommend Code Switch and Call Your Girlfriend.

        • Tsh Oxenreider

          I haven’t started season 3 of Serial yet, so I’m super glad to hear about this! And yes, Code Switch is a good one; I’m a fan of those hosts. Call Your Girlfriend is an episode-by-episode case for me, but I do love Aminatou and Ann’s format and vision for the show.

          Thanks for sharing, Meg!

  2. Kristin

    I love this post! With so much content out there, I really value the opinion and recommendations of trusted people like you, Tsh. Some favs of mine: On Being (beautiful reflective interviews. A recent fav was a re-release of an interview with Mary Oliver.), The Dropout (about Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos-this one is crazy!), and The Daily Poem, among others. Always trying to cultivate silence as well, and room for audiobooks. (I mentioned my husband’s podcast, Song & Story, on your insta post. Definitely worthy of a listen. I’d recommend the Ike Ndolo episode or The Collection episode to start-but all are so well done.)

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Thanks for the recs, Kristin! I adore On Being, and that one with Mary Oliver is absolute gold.

  3. Tracey Clem

    Hey Tsh (and readers),
    This may sound odd, but any advice or tips on HOW you listen to podcasts? I feel like my list of want-to-listen-to podcasts is epic, but I don’t know where to fit it in. I’m never in the car for longer than about 10 min, and then usually with kids who are less than enthusiastic about listening to “some guy talk”. ? I usually listen while running, but would love advice on how you fit more podcast-listening time in your day. Thanks!!

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Yes, great question! We actually did a four-part deep-dive on how Kendra (friend of the show) and I listen to pods: it starts at episode 113 and goes through 116 (scroll through the player at the top of the page).

      Hope that helps!

      • Tracey Clem

        Tsh, thanks for pointing me toward those episodes! I’ll definitely take a listen and some notes!

    • Kristin

      Tracey, the episodes Tsh mentions are great, but additionally, I’ll just mention what I do. I try to take the opportunity to listen to either a podcast or audiobook while I’m cooking dinner and sometimes while doing the dishes. I try to limit my kiddos’ screen time to when I’m making dinner, so they’re usually pretty occupied at that time, and I get some good listening in! I also sometimes listen with one earbud in while folding laundry or putting the baby to sleep. But I definitely try to make room for some silence in there, and just being present to the moment! Just a balance. Anyway, I hope you find some ways to work some listening in!

      • Tracey Clem

        Thanks for the ideas, Kristin! Cooking and laundry are great tips. ?

  4. Kelli

    This is a great list! So often, the list of recommended podcasts I see are repeats of the same 5 shows. I’m excited to jump into some new and interesting shows from this list!

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Totally agreed! I actually had that in mind when I wrote this list. 😉

  5. Christin

    You weren’t joking — NPR’s World Story of the Day is nearly impossible to find. Any hints on how to find it in Overcast? (I’ve been hooked on Overcast ever since your recommendation a while back!)

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Bizarre, right? I’ve got mine in Overcast now — I manually added the RSS address. Let me see if I can dig it up… hold please.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Okay, found it — tap the plus sign in the top right corner, then tap ‘Add URL’ in the top right corner and paste this URL: https://www.npr.org/templates/rss/podlayer.php?id=1056

      (I’ll add this info in the post above, in case anyone else asks!)

  6. Aimee

    My favorites right now are Pantsuit Politics, the Sage Parenting podcast with Rachel Rainbolt, Typology with Ian Cron and Little Faith podcast. (I know I’ve heard you on a few of those, Tsh!)

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Ha! Yes, I think I’ve been on most (all?) of those shows… Great picks, Aimee!

  7. Amy

    Also a fan of Hurry Slowly. My all time favourite is The Slow Home podcast. I also really enjoy Straight & Curly which is two friends chatting about self improvement. For current affairs, I like The Inquiry by the BBC. Four commentators share on aspects of a topic of the day. I find I can never keep up with daily newness, this is newsie but if I don’t get to it for a week or a month or three months it is still current.

  8. Morgan

    My favorite READING podcast: What Should I Read Next w/ Anne Bogel (interesting guests, Anne’s voice is soothing and story-like, & great books recs – I always have my Goodreads app open & ready). My favorite CRIME podcast: The Vanished Podcast (that narrator dives into the stories of the missing in a way that truly honors and respects both the victims & those they left behind). My favorite LIMITED SERIES (??) podcast: Septic by The Roanoke Times (a mindboggling story of a child’s death and the criminal and civil proceedings that followed – touches on the hard issues of addiction, parenting, & poverty). My favorite NONPROFIT podcast: Jesus Said Love Podcast w/ Brett & Emily (one of my favorite nonprofits run by friends of mine launched their new podcast to tell the stories of women and men they have encountered in their mission to awaken hope and empower change within the commercial sex industry and beyond). Can you tell I love stories?!

  9. Rose

    I started listening to Hurry Slowly but I can’t get past the host’s vocal fry at the end of many of her sentences 🙁

  10. Emily Neal

    This is a great list! I listen to a lot of podcasts, but I haven’t tried many of these.

  11. Amanda

    My favorites that haven’t been mentioned yet are Flash Forward – a sci-fi show that takes plausible or far-out future scenarios and talks to present-day scientists and other experts about how that future might actually happen; and Working – about what people do all day at different jobs. Both are fascinating!

  12. Sasha

    A new podcast that is so amazing is Dear Anxiety. It’s put out by the creator of Go Zen. It’s not about just anxiety, but all sorts of mental challenges, such as procrastination or body image. It’s about helping your kids with mental health, but I think the ideas are great for everyone – not just kids.

Get the weekly email called 5 Quick Things,

where Tsh shares stuff she either created herself or loved from others. (It can be read in under a minute, pinky-swear.)

You’ll also get an excerpt from her latest book, At Home in the World, a memoir about the school year her family backpacked around the world.