5 Awesome Podcasts For Self-Development

I don't know how much time you spend by yourself, but as a military spouse and someone who commutes for two hours a day, I have a lot of quality "me" time. I've had to learn to transform how I choose to experience this fact from self-pity and the narrative of "being a military spouse is hard" (it is, but had to change my focus) to "look at all this time that I can spend educating myself". 

Enter podcasts. I listen to them all the time. They are a low cost way to learn about how successful people think, act and strategize. You can hear stories about life-changing moments and discover ways to change your thinking that will empower you to be more effective in achieving your goals in career, relationships and life. 

The podcasts that I decided to mention in this article were chosen based on the following criteria:

  • They feature guests who do not fit traditional, standardized molds. And they have created ways to live very well by following an inner calling, purpose, destiny - whichever word works best for your purposes.
  • The episodes often address major challenges more than successful moments, showing that learning occurs during the tough times. 
  • A lot of these shows address a notion that I've been obsessed with: finding the intersection between creativity and wealth.
  • The hosts are intelligent and open-minded, capable of having conversations with people who have different world views and experience the world in a different way without getting all weird.
  • I'm constantly being introduced to people I've never heard of and totally having my mind blown by these podcasts. In an awesome way.
  1. Tim Ferriss - The author of the Four Hour Work Week and Four Hour Body interviews high performers from all walks of life and tries to uncover the habits, thought patterns and practices that have gotten them to where they are. 
  2. The Moment With Brian Koppelman - The writer of Rounders and Billions (which you should upgrade your cable package to Showtime immediately to start watching) speaks with actors, writers, poker players and other fascinating people that he keeps company with to identify The Moment, or in most cases, the moments, that have delivered the guest to the life that they are currently living. And very often, the life they are living is a total study in the intersection of wealth and creativity.
  3. How To Be Amazing  - Michael Ian Black, comedian and author of two books, interviews athletes, television personalities and other people who he deems to be amazing and deconstructs how they achieved said amazing status.
  4. The James Altucher Show - James Altucher has a background in finance and speaks with a lot of his peers. What I enjoyed about this podcast was the revelation of creativity behind the seemingly banal numbers-driven world of money. People who make a lot of money think in very different ways. This podcast doesn't just speak with finance luminaries; this is the podcast where I was first introduced to The Moment's Brian Koppelman and my obsession with Billions began.
  5. WTF with Marc Maron - I love this podcast. If you listen to the early episodes and go all the way through (which is not difficult to do, the interviews are compelling, the guests fascinating) you can start to hear the transformation of the host. Through the years he's become more present, grown into himself and matured. As wonderful as the interviews are, the arc of the life of the podcast is an illustration of creating life on your terms. It's a beautiful thing.

What podcasts would you add to this list? I would love to hear in the comments!