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Monday, 25 April 2016

My Favourite Podcasts Part i

I've been mentioning for quite a long time now how much I've got into listening to podcasts over the past year or so. Living in London without a car and Exeter when I'm at uni where I wouldn't really need to drive anywhere even if I had the option, I do a lot of walking. And I love that actually. I find that walking never fails to help me clear my head if something's on my mind and, if not, that it's just incredibly relaxing, no matter how appealing staying in bed all day can be. But sometimes I get a little bored of all the thoughts running around my head and, while music can tune those out a little, I found myself really wanting to listen to something that would engage my mind a bit more if that makes sense.

With that in mind, I opened the Podcasts app on my iPhone for the first time since buying it. And, not to be overdramatic or anything, but it has totally changed my walking life. I also find listening to ten minutes of a podcast episode if I can't sleep helps to prevent me from getting to the point where I just want to scream because I know how tired I'll be the next day even though I'm trying all I can to get to sleep. We've all been there... right?

Anyway, most of the podcasts I listen to week in, week out, I've come across from others' recommendations and so I thought I'd finally get around to sharing my own. I've cut them down to my favourite ten podcasts and am going to share five of those with you today and then five on Friday. The ones I'm telling you about today are generally the ones I tend to listen to more in the week when I'm walking to uni lectures or making myself dinner and the ones I'll share on Friday are more ones I like to listen to at the weekend when I just want to relax and really listen to the podcast. That's not to say that I don't concentrate when listening to these ones, just that I find it easier to multi-task while still absorbing what they're saying with the ones below.

So, without further ado, here are five of my favourite podcasts of the moment ::

1 // Woman's Hour - BBC Radio Four's Woman's Hour must have been the first podcast I subscribed to. I can't remember exactly where I heard about it from but I saw that they seemed to be discussing incredibly interesting topics and, having listened pretty regularly for a year now, can confirm this is a hugely insightful podcast. They always have a range of guests on the show, from author Cheryl Strayed to singer Carrie Underwood to UK junior doctors discussing their current issues with government so there is something for everyone. Their discussions are always incredibly informing and I love to listen to Woman's Hour to broaden my horizons on a given issue. Well worth a subscription if you ask me!

2 // Ladies Who Lunch - This podcast is a pretty new one, having launched its first episode just under a month ago, but I am already obsessed with it. Its premise is that it's a conversation between YouTubers Ingrid Nilson and Cat Valdes discussing "topics often left out of polite conversation". With episodes so far talking in depth about friendship, feminism and objectification, online dating and body image, these ladies have created a podcast that always leaves me wanting to hear more and kinda wanting them to be my best friends.

3 // The Lively Show - Ah, The Lively Show. This was my second ever subscription on recommendation by Rosie and I don't think I've missed an episode since I subscribed. Jess seems like such a lovely person and the premise behind her podcast is that she's trying to cultivate a life lived with intention, something I'm sure we'd all like to aspire to. Each week, she interviews someone about their story and how they're living their life ensuring they stick to the values they want their life to be centred around. I mentioned the Alisa Vitti episodes on pleasure as being particular highlights of mine and I'm also really enjoying Jess' bonus episodes in which she's started discussing her monthly favourites. Such a great podcast.

4 // Dear Hank and John - I've loved John and Hank Green's YouTube channel for a good couple of years now, I get the impression that they're such genuine people, so when I heard they were launching a podcast just under a year ago, I was pretty fast to subscribe. This is such a funny (despite the many conversations about death) and uplifting podcast (again despite the many conversations about death). John and Hank essentially take questions listeners have emailed in and give their famously dubious advice. It can go from being very light-hearted to talking about the meaning of life in mere minutes and I kind of love that about it.

5 // Week in Westminster - Two BBC Radio Four recommendations in one post?! I know, I know I must seem like such a granny. But the truth is I am unashamedly a complete politics nerd and find it really interesting. While when I was doing politics A Level it was incredibly easy to keep up with it, at uni (where I'm studying history and philosophy) it takes more of an effort. Listening to this podcast, which, as the name suggests, essentially sums up the goings on in Parliament from the given week, makes it all a lot easier and less arduous to keep up to date with what's going on. If you're looking for a way to understand what's going on in politics without giving yourself a massive headache I'd really recommend you give this a listen.

Let me know if you're subscribed to any of these/other podcasts and what you think! I'll be back on Friday to share five more of my favourite podcasts. Have a wonderful week in the meantime!

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