Monday: Money Diaries
I kick start the week with the Money Diaries podcast to refocus myself on work and shift my mental space back to professional matters as opposed to the (often pink gin fuelled) shenanigans that went down over the weekend.
In each episode a listener – or ‘diarist’ as they’re called in line with the brand – submits a question or awkward situation to do with finance which may be of a personal or professional nature. I’ve found a lot of the questions to be very relatable, especially as a business owner.
Call me British, but I find discussing money excruciatingly uncomfortable, so having a podcast which breaks down the fundamentals without being too judgey is a fantastic source of information. As it is an American podcast, a few of the references don’t apply here and some of the terminology used differs from that which we use in the UK, but overall the tips and facts dished out are invaluable, especially in a world where female financial autonomy is on the up but much of the legislation is yet to adapt.
Tuesday: The High Low
How could I draw up a podcast list without including this juggernaut of the podcast world?
Hosted by journalists Dolly Alderton and Pandora Sykes, The High Low is a fab listen for those bookish bods amongst us. I like to listen to The High Low on a Tuesday as it gives me enough time to treat myself to one of their literary recommendations in time for a read at the weekend. (Yes, I have heard of Amazon Prime, but I try my very best when it comes to books to support independent stores – the majority will order in a book on your request if they don’t have your choice in store.)
Wednesday: In The Country
A very new podcast, In The Country is the latest creation of West Sussex based entrepreneur Hollie-Ella.
Although – as the name would suggest – the subject matter is pretty niche, aspects of business, personal achievement, struggle in the sports world and brand development are discussed which could still be of interest to those with more of an urban lifestyle. Plus, it’s always constructive to support a fellow female branching out with a new project!
Thursday: The Bodcast
The daughter of daytime TV royalty Richard and Judy, Chloe Madeley has built her own fitness brand with a number of no-nonsense sell-out books under her belt and now a podcast all about improving physical health.
In each episode, a fellow fitness fanatic joins Chloe to discuss fads, bust body myths and debate what really works when it comes to getting a sweat on.
I am by no means a gym bunny – I work out, but I don’t think I’ve ever turned down a Jaffa Cake in my life – so some of the references in terms of what needs to be done to reach peak fitness aren’t exactly relevant to me. I found it particularly astounding to learn that Chloe won’t even have a solitary block of Toblerone on a Friday night as it’ll mess up her finely tuned nutrition plan, and this is not the level of commitment I am prepared to give my endeavour for some sort of bikini body (whatever that means). Therefore, a few of the references and recommendations are quite extreme and only applicable to those heading to the gym seven times per week, but in general the podcast is really motivational and educational for those with an interest in the gym.
I find listening to The Bodcast on a Thursday to be ideal, because by this point in the week I am ready to sack off the gym in favour of having an extra hour in bed, so the motivation is just what I need to haul my lazy behind onto the treadmill.
Friday: Off Menu
Warning: Do not listen to Off Menu if you are hungry or when you’re food shopping. You’ll find yourself packing out the trolly with more decadent treats than you can wave a credit card at.
Hosted by comedians Ed Gamble and James Acaster, Off Menu follows a very simple format where each week a guest chooses their all time favourite starter, main course, side order, dessert and drink with a couple of questions along the way to provide context for the guest’s choices.
Light-hearted and anecdotal, it’s perfect for an end of the week listen.
Saturday: Full Disclosure with James O’Brien
My Saturday mornings are normally spent trekking across the country with one of the horses in tow for some competition or another, the downside of which is that I am usually on the road by 7am having woken up to clean the horses at an ungodly hour. After such an early alarm and given that most normal people are still sound asleep at this time on a Saturday morning, I’m not in the mood to listen to anything too high energy during my journey, although I do need something engaging to keep me awake – this is where Full Disclosure comes in.
Each episode sees a guest interviewed by radio presenter James O’Brien about their life and career in a manner which really digs to the heart of why their lives took a certain path and why they chose to pursue high pressure, high responsibility careers.
I am not a massive fan of O’Brien – I find him to be the type of person I would least like to be sat next to at a dinner party. However with all of that said, I cannot deny that I enjoy his interview style and the way in which he gives his guests the confidence to share deeply personal details whilst refraining from sycophancy. His guests include Ed Miliband, Lenny Henry and Adam Kay to name but a few of the fascinating figures.
Sunday: Desert Island Discs
You cannot beat a classic! With decades of episodes in the library, Desert Island Discs is a cathartic podcast jam-packed with life stories and intriguing nuggets of unknown information about some of modern culture’s most revered figures.
Each guest picks eight tracks that they simply could not live without if they were cast off to a desert island for the rest of their years. The host – currently Lauren Laverne – walks the guest through their reason for choosing each track in tandem with a chronological dissection of their life and career.
I could not even begin to list my favourite Desert Island Discs episodes as there are simply so many that I’ve adored. Not all of those favourite episodes have been focused on figures of whom I was previously aware – sometimes the best ones are those which open my eyes to people I’d never heard of but who have led extraordinary lives, and by the end of the episode, when they’ve been cast off to this ever illusive desert island, I’ve found myself eagerly ordering their autobiography, hungry for more details on their captivating achievements.
Whittling these podcasts down to one per day took longer than writing the post itself, simply because I listen to so many podcasts that choosing just seven was pretty taxing. I haven’t completely discarded the list of podcasts which didn’t quite make the cut for this post, as I’ll be sure to write up another soon with some more shout outs to podcasts which I’ve loved listening to of late. In the meantime, happy listening!