3 Must-Have Podcasts

Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations

This was one of the first podcasts that I discovered, and now it sits in my podcast library as one of the holy grails. I found it while flipping through the pages of O, The Oprah Magazine a few summers ago and knew that I had to have it. If you ever ask me why I subscribed to the magazine, I wouldn’t know how to answer you. I wanted it along with the closeness, wisdom, and maybe success of Oprah that I would hopefully share if I read the magazine once, twice, or maybe three times a month.  

The knowledge “Super Soul” provides keeps me coming back for more. If you’re not familiar with her, which I highly doubt, Oprah is a media powerhouse and philanthropist. Her podcast is centered around the lives of celebrities, monks, authors, and politicians — people from all walks of life — who share their values and beliefs, tips on how to live a fuller life, as well as advice on how to be more present in our daily lives. New podcasts are typically released two to three times per week. Albeit, her podcasts are a bit lengthy, ranging from 30 minutes to more than an hour. As I rarely finish an episode in one sitting, I’ll stop and resume periodically throughout the day. Sometimes, I might even split up a podcast into two or three days or even throughout a whole week. I’ve learned everything from meditating on my way to classes to analyzing my inner critic with Oprah, and I can’t wait to learn more. I invite you to join me; you won’t regret it.

Passing Through by Nneka J

Recently, amid midterm chaos and exam preparation, I discovered this podcast through a middle-of-the-night conversation with a friend. I have  been grateful ever since. “Passing Through” not only transcended my expectations, but has also impacted my life in more ways than one. It follows both the blessings and mishaps of  Nigerian and Cambodian-American storyteller and creator, Nneka Julia, who highlights all of her memories with such detail, grace, and honest introspection through travel across time and space.  

Her stories detail her inner struggles, feelings, and ultimately her own vulnerability in loving, reflecting, and growing into the woman that she is today. Her podcasts range between 10 to 20 minute per episode and are perfect for breaks between classes or even from studying. New episodes come out every week, although occasionally longer. Listening in has helped me with introspection; while I am still far from perfect (not that I would I aim to be), baby steps are being taken. From the awkwardness of growing up to the complexities of relationships and the discovery of self, not only are her podcasts relatable, but they also pose questions that foster personal introspection and self-analysis, which is incredibly humbling and comforting.

Earn Your Happy by Lori Harder

While the previous two podcasts are more serious and deal with heavier subject material, Lori Harder’s “Earn your Happy” is one of the most positive, encouraging, and uplifting podcasts I’ve come across. Its upbeat theme song lifts you out of whatever funk you’re in and inspires you to change your life habits for the better. Her podcasts lengths vary greatly, ranging from under 15 minutes to over an hour, with new podcasts released two to three times per week.

Her energy and positivity are contagious and are a great way to kick start your Monday. Lori Harder is a model and author with an unyielding love for spreading her inspiration and motivation with others. Like “SuperSoul Conversations,” her podcast also features other celebrities, authors, and friends who share their own experiences, tips, and struggles that tie into the current day’s theme.

Although these are my go-to podcasts at the moment, there is honorable mentions that I would like to highlight - “Be Jesus and Jollof” by Yvonne Orji and Luvvie Ajayi. Tune in for Nigerian antics and comedy, and of course, lessons on life.

I hope that this selection appealed to you in some way or at the very least, served as the stepping stone to your own path towards podcast (and self-) discovery.