This might sound stupid, but how do I listen to podcasts?
I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve never listened to a podcast before.
A special thank you to my brave readers who chimed in and asked questions about podcasts. While growing in popularity, podcasts are still relatively new. I decided that it’s time to put podcast shame to rest. In this post, I’ll tell you what a podcast is, how you can listen to them, and why you’ll love them. I’ll even share some of my top picks at the end.
We need a bit of basic knowledge to get started. Then, thanks to modern technology, we can learn as we go. A great way to do this is through podcasts.
What is a podcast?
A podcast is an on-demand, online, audio program. Unlike traditional radio shows that start and end at a specific time, you can start and stop a podcast when it’s convenient for you.
When a podcast reaches a certain number of downloads, the podcaster usually brings on sponsors. But the meaty middle of many podcasts are still commercial free. Most podcast apps have skip forward and back options, giving you the freedom to fly through sections that aren’t relevant to you.
The genres are endless with new podcasts launching daily. Just type the topic you’re interested in learning about into the search feature of your app and you’ll have plenty to choose from. I’ll cover some of my favorites at the end of this post.
How to listen to a podcast?
Most podcasts have a website where episodes can be listened to and downloaded. Many people use apps on their smartphones to listen to podcasts at home and on the go. For iPhone users, the iOS Podcasts app works great. For Android users, I’d recommend using the podcasts feature in Google Play.
Why I love podcasts.
Podcasts are an excellent way to learn about your top areas of interest. For example, when my husband and I were on our journey to financial freedom, The Dave Ramsey Show offered the knowledge, inspiration, and motivation to help us stay on track.
The best thing about podcasts is that they give you the freedom to learn while doing other things. I like to listen to podcasts while driving, exercising, cooking, cleaning, and gardening. If you want to listen to more podcasts in less time, the iPhone app allows you to play back at 1.5 and 2 times the normal speed.
Podcasts are entertaining and make learning fun. We all have different tastes and with so many podcasts available, you’ll surely find someone you connect with.
While most podcasts aren’t entirely commercial free, you’ll immediately recognize differences from traditional radio. Podcasters usually have sponsors, which they typically mention at the beginning or end of the episode. Since most podcasts are niche, sponsors are targeted and relevant. Additionally, sponsors often offer special deals to podcast listeners.
As I mentioned, there are endless genres to choose from. You can find anything from entertainment to the history of the Roman Empire. Here are a few of my personal favorites right now.
- Health and Fitness – Found My Fitness
- Spirituality – On Being
- Marriage and Family – Mama Says Namaste
- Personal Finance – The Dave Ramsey Show
- Career – 48 Days
- Entrepreneurship and Online Business – Smart Passive Income
- Interpersonal Skills – The Art of Charm
- Productivity and Performance – The Tim Ferriss Show
- Innovative Thinking – TED Radio Hour
- Human Nature – Freakonomics
- History – Revisionist History
As I mentioned, these are some of my favorites right now. If you didn’t find anything that piqued your interest here, ask a friend, search Google, or browse your podcast app. I assure you there’s something out there just for you.
According to Statistic Brain, 44 percent of American plan to make a self-improvement or education related resolution this year. If you fall into this category, boost your knowledge and motivation by adding podcasts to your routine.
What are your favorite podcasts?
Share in the comments below.