No hour wasted. That’s the motto for doers—for the ambitious and the curious. Don’t spend your mornings half-heartedly listening to a news program or contemplating why we can’t solve the eternal riddle of rush-hour traffic. Instead, take back your attention—your most valuable and scarce resource. With the company of a podcast, you can become more well rounded. You can become interested in something new. You can get perspectives that help you solve the challenges or the day – or, at the very least, you can be pleasantly entertained.
Newcomer to big-name podcast collective Gimlet Media, Heavyweight describes itself as a show where “Jonathan Goldstein goes back to the moment everything changed.” Heavyweight is a podcast about regret, which sounds pretty, well, heavy. But somehow Heavyweight manages to be incredibly uplifting and genuinely funny, even when it’s tackling those small pains which plague us all, like what would happen I didn’t give up on basketball in high school? Or did my first love feel as deeply as I did? Heavyweight is, at its heart, one of the most human podcasts out there – and what better time to reminded of the fine line between beauty and tragedy than first thing in the morning?
Have you ever been frustrated by a door handle that seemed like a push, but was, in fact, a pull? Have you ever wondered where those wacky air-filled dancing guys come from? Or who was the first missing child to be put on the side of a milk carton? These are the stories you’ll find on 99% Invisible, a podcast dedicated to the small things that make up our lives. The episodes are nice and short, ranging from fifteen to thirty minutes long – perfect for a morning commute.
S Town comes from the same group who makes podcasting’s most recognizable names, This American Life and Serial. And, unlike most podcasts, S Town has a defined beginning and end. It is the fascinating, tragic, unbelievable story of a true polymath in an unlikely small town in Alabama. And he believes there’s been murder. It’s a wild ride, with developments and people you’re not likely to forget. Trust, you’ll be looking for excuses to go on long walks just to get to the next episode. My advice: bring a tissue.
Created by National Public Radio, Planet Money makes finance, investing, economics and other topics approachable and genuinely interesting. While understanding the economy can often feel like trying to hold a handful of feathers in a hurricane, Planet Money’s hosts work to keep you updated and, shockingly, entertained.
Since the book by the same name was released in 2005, there hasn’t been a dinner party where some fact gleaned from Freakonomics wasn’t shared. Most of what makes Freakonomics so compelling is the way its hosts and founders connect data and ideas that don’t, on the surface, appear related. They bill their podcast (and radio show) as a place to explore the wrinkles of everyday life and human nature. You’ll certainly have something interesting to share at your morning meetings if you start your day with Freakonomics.