Let’s talk podcasts, shall we? There are more than 660,000 podcasts in the world right now, all of which have produced some 28 million episodes. That’s a lot of audio to take in, and a lot of people listening in.
One of the best things about podcasts is that you can listen to them any time, anywhere. It means that they’re great early-morning listening, something that you can stream through your phone while you’re getting ready and making breakfast and listen to while you’re commuting to work.
They keep your brain active and your mind engaged, and the right ones will motivate you in the morning to get out of bed and start your day. These are some of our favourites that get us up and out of bed in the mornings. . .
The High Low
Hosted by journalists Pandora Sykes and Dolly Alderton, this current affairs and pop culture podcast will make you think. Dropping each week on a Wednesday, this podcast tackles the most talked about issues of each week, as well as sharing the books, television shows and other podcasts to read, watch and listen. It’s a must for anyone wanting to stay in the know about the pop culture happenings of the moment.
While this podcast shares a name with a popular Australian tabloid magazine, Who? Weekly is also about celebrity gossip but it’s hosted by two American journalists (Bobby Finger and Lindsey Weber) and structured through a different prism. Basically, Who? Weekly believes that celebrities can be split up into two camps: Thems (the Brad Pitts and Angelina Jolies of the world) and Whos (Rita Ora, anyone from a reality TV show).
They’re more interested in the Whos, if you hadn’t already guessed by the podcast’s name, and each episode they dissect this week’s best who-lebrity news in a way that will make you laugh out loud on the bus. If you’re a fan of gossip and tabloid musings, you’ll love listening to this podcast.
How To Fail with Elizabeth Day
One of the breakout podcasts of 2018, this series is about interrogating the idea of failure in modern society and the lessons we can learn from the moments when we didn’t achieve our goals. Journalist Elizabeth Day is a smart and empathetic interviewer who gets the most out of her guests, everyone from actress and comedian Phoebe Waller-Bridge to Lily Allen.
Each season is better than the last, and each episode manages to make you question everything you thought you knew about failure. Instead of thinking of our mistakes as setbacks, Day wants us to think of them as lessons that help us to succeed. If that isn’t a motivational message for your mornings, then we don’t know what is.
Pop Culture Happy Hour
Every Friday this smart, informative podcast drops into your podcast app and will instantly make your weekends better. It’s part of the NPR offering, which is one of the biggest radio stations in America, and focuses on critical takes on pop culture.
If you’re the kind of person who loves to be the first to binge-watch a Netflix show, tell your friends about a true crime drama or see the buzzy Oscar-winning drama at the movies, you need to listen to this podcast. Each week they tackle the most talked-about piece of pop culture of the moment, which could be anything from the Netflix comedy Russian Doll to a new Beyonce album, dissecting it in clever, conversational detail. They end the episodes with a rapidfire round of things that are making each co-host happy that week, which is sure to put a smile on your face.
The Goop Podcast
Love it or hate it, you can’t deny that Goop knows how to deliver what its audience wants. In their inaugural podcast, Gwyneth Paltrow’s wellness empire continues to do just that, creating a space for honest conversations about health, wellbeing and modern living.
Some of them are hosted by Paltrow herself, like the interviews with Oprah and Dax Shepherd. Others feature Goop editors sounding off on zeitgeisty wellness topics. But each episode will draw you in and get you thinking about something that might not have been on your radar before.
Offline with Alison Rice
Preening selfies, perfect meals and picture perfect sunsets, we all know that social media is a highlight reel for your life. But Alison Rice isn’t interested in the highlight reel. On her interview based podcast, she speaks to some of Australia’s biggest influencers like Sara Donaldson and Eleanor Pendleton about the truth about social media and the gulf between their online personas and their offline selves.
For many of her interview subjects, this conversation is one of the most in-depth and honest talks that they have ever had on the topic of social media, and many of them discuss authenticity, privacy, anxiety and more in a way that is truly inspiring. Queue this up for your commute and prepare to be blown away.
Boss Files With Poppy Harlow
Seasoned CNN journalist Poppy Harlow’s podcast has pulled together a line-up that boasts guests from (but not limited to!) Starbucks founder Howard Schultz to Dr. Priscilla Chan; Glossier’s Emily Weiss to legendary legal icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg; Warren Buffet (!) to Melinda Gates and asks them how they did it (whatever ‘it’ might be), and discusses varied topics related but not limited to leadership, business and innovation. It’s a must-listen. . . but before you do, please hand us a broom to clean up all the names we just dropped.
From Clique Media Founder Hilary Kerr (you know, the group that brought us Who What Wear, MyDomaine and Byrdie Beauty) comes this delightful, easy-to-listen to series of inspirational chats with women who’ve seen wild success… on their second (sometimes third!) career. From celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin to, ahem, Jessica Alba and Mandy Moore, Kerr’s in-depth episodes remind us that career changes are not only possible but packed with potential, and wherever you’re at in your career—it’s never too late to dream differently.