Over the past year I’ve switched from listening to music on my daily commute, to podcasts. My commute time seems much shorter when I’m getting sucked into an interesting narrative, and I always feel like I’m learning something new, or like my day has been enriched. It’s really an experience I look forward to each day, so I thought I’d share my favourites with you 🙂
Image from themarjorie.com
This true crime podcast features hosts Karen and Georgia, who share tales of their favourite murders, along with other generally creepy stories.
I actually had to stop listening to MFM for a couple of months, because true crime podcasts give me real bad anxiety. I was having trouble sleeping after listening to stories about serial killers and rapists twice a day…but the podcast is so freakin’ good that I had to start tuning in again. Karen and Georgia are hilarious hosts, and their banter is too witty and delightful for me to pass up. They’re also smart, relatable, and have interesting opinions about current events in addition to whichever murder tale they’re talking about. If you’re a millennial woman, or can just generally appreciate funny chicks, I guarantee you too will be a murderino after listening to a couple episodes.
The old faithful! This podcast is just reliably good. It is primarily a journalistic non-fiction program produced each week, which tries to give its audience a glimpse into the life of your average American. Except the stories are anything but average. They’ve created shows following the last presidential election from both the Democrat and Republican side of things, they’ve featured stories of what happens when animals invade human spaces, what it’s like to live with regret, what really goes on in kids’ minds, the turf wars in the public school system, and much, much more. TAL is my favourite podcast to listen to, and I’m always sad when I finish the week’s episode and have to wait for a new one. A stand-out for me was Switched at Birth. I recommend this for anyone and everyone!
This educational podcast will teach you almost everything you want to know about anything 🙂 Hosts Josh and Chuck have made episodes on how maps work, how the beagle brigade works, what happens after you get decapitated, what allergies and itching are, how swearing works, why whale strandings are still a mystery, etc. etc. If you want to learn about something, chances are they’ve done a podcast on it. They’ve created podcasts on topics you didn’t even know you needed, and that’s the best part. My favourite? The Golden Age of Grave-Robbing (wow, I am macabre) and also How Breastfeeding Works! Again, I recommend this podcast for anyone.
“The Hidden Brain helps curious people understand the world – and themselves. Using science and storytelling, Hidden Brain’s host Shankar Vedantam reveals the unconscious patterns that drive human behavior, the biases that shape our choices, and the triggers that direct the course of our relationships.” I love this podcast because it’s usually only half an hour long, and although the topics are complex, it’s easy to digest and totally fascinating. My favourite so far has been What Our Google Searches Reveal About Who We Really Are. Another podcast I’d recommend for anyone!
I’m not a huge fan of fictional podcasts – I’d rather just download an audiobook – but the quick pace and suspenseful storyline of Homecoming keeps me hooked. The story focuses on Heidi, a caseworker from an experimental facility who’s helping soldiers integrate back into the community…but there’s something not quite right with the experimental facility, and Heidi is definitely keeping a few secrets of her own. The series ends on a major cliffhanger, but Season 2 is starting soon! Listen to the first episode of Season 1 to see if you like it! I recommend this for story-lovers and binge watchers/listeners.
I tune into TED Talks when I need a short podcast (some are under 10 minutes long), when I need a pep talk, or when I want to be inspired by creative thinking and cool ideas. If you’re new to podcasts, and don’t have the attention span for This American Life, then I’d start here!
Host Terry O’Reilly dives deep into the captivating world of Marketing. “The first 50 years of modern advertising was based on hard-sell. The next 50 years was persuasion through creativity and media tonnage. But as advertising squeezed into the 21 century, it was forced to shed its elbowing ways and become a delicate dialogue. The goal is no longer to triumph by weight, but to win by influence. […] Under the Influence is an exploration of that critical shift.”
Even if you’re not a marketing aficionado, I think this podcast is worth a listen! Check out Unforeseen Circumstances: How Companies Are Affected By Chance. Another great think about this podcast? It’s Canadian 🙂
Serial (Season 1), an investigative journalism podcast, which will have you internally screaming over the question: is he innocent or guilty??
S-Town – is so, SO good. Perhaps one of my favourite podcast series ever. But reading this article has left me conflicted about enjoying it as much as I did. I’ll let you make up your own mind about, but I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Thanks for reading! As always, I’d love your suggestions 🙂 xox