Commuting can be a real drag…

I live in Seattle proper, but trek out to an area suburb each day to the elementary school where I work. Over the last five years of teaching, that adds up to a lot of time in the car. This year, I found a way to make that time more valuable: podcasts. I listened to podcasts years ago when I got my first iPod. I’ve always loved NPR, but have found that podcasts are like NPR but insanely better. Here are a few of my favorite podcasts that have taken my daily commute from hideously boring, to a time I look forward to where I can learn something and improve my life. Get your iPhone ready…

5 Podcasts I Am Obsessed With

1. The Lively Show  You may remember Jess Lively from her days running her accessory business Jess LC, or from the work she’s done in collaboration with many of our favorite bloggers including Kendi Skeen of Kendi Everyday, but these days Jess is living the dream. Her dream, that is, and we’re all lucky enough to learn something from it. Jess is all about living a life with intention, as she puts it, and her podcast is a dose of inspiration and intention for your everyday life. She invites tons of influencers including some amazing bloggers and creatives to share their successes, struggles, and what they’ve learned along their personal journeys.

2. Death, Sex, & Money Anna Sale and her team from WNYC public radio put together a thought-provoking show about “the things we think about a lot and need to talk about more.” The show moves between the three topics listed in the show’s title, and features listener submitted stories along with interviews with famous and fascinating guests. Her interviews with Jane Fonds and Ellen Burstyn and the show about living alone (as I currently do) were so interesting and made me think about life, in general and my own, in completely new ways. It’s a true eye opener and totally addicting.

3. Listen Money Matters Andrew and Thomas are the kings of finance for regular people. They kick back, drink a craft beer or two, and talk about the important things we should all know and think about when it comes to our finances. This show jump-started a lot of the work I’m doing on my finances right now. It’s so casual and relatable that you feel like you’re just chatting about 401Ks over happy hour with buddies. The guys also post regular articles on their website, and send out a weekly email newsletter with financial challenges related to their podcasts. It’s a must listen if you’re looking to up your financial game.

4. So Money with Farnoosh Torabi I’d seen Farnoosh Torabi on various television shows as a financial voice of reason, so when I saw her name pop up on iTunes I was thrilled. She’s smart, and sassy, and is all about women taking control of their financial lives. She conducts interviews with some fascinating people, many of whom I’d never heard of before her podcast, but by the end, was totally enamored with. She asks each guest a series of questions about their first money lessons growing up, how that has impacted their current state of affairs and about the financial turmoil they’ve faced. I’ve learned a lot from these amazing stories.

5. The TED Radio Hour Love TED, but overwhelmed by the sheer number of videos out there? The TED Radio Hour is a great way to get the message of some of the best on your evening commute, so you can look up the full TED talk later when you get home. Each show is centered around a theme, and the team puts together audio clips from related TED speakers, and features short interviews with them later. I’ve found so many amazing TED talks through listening to this podcast, and I learn something new each and every episode.

If you have any favorite podcasts, I’d love to hear about them in the comments. Happy commuting!