“Who listens to the radio anymore?”
I looked at the lanky teenager who asked the question and replied that it has been years since I’ve turned a dial looking for something to listen to. With the ever increasing popularity of “on demand” options, why would I want to get stuck listening to someone else’s choice for music, news, or edifying content?
In truth, I love the option of on-demand content. Whether I pull up Spotify to listen to music or my podcast app to listen to content—I love being able to choose what I want to listen to when I want to listen to it.
5 Reasons You Should Love Listening to Podcasts
I’ve been an avid podcast listener for years. Currently, I subscribe and listen to 17 podcasts (the number has been as high as 48)—many are sermons or Bible-based subjects, but I also have podcasts on topics such as health, business, finance, productivity, manhood, and communication. Most of these have weekly episodes, and though there are a few other podcasts I pick and choose from when there appears to be a good episode, I try to listen to every episode and stay up-to-date with these 17.
Yes, it takes some time—but that is the great thing about podcasts: it is on-demand content that I can take with me wherever I go. In fact, let me give you five reasons why I love podcasts and think you will too:
1. On-Demand Content
This is probably the greatest reason for podcasts in my mind. I live a busy life and I admit its hard to find time to listen to edifying content—but podcasts allow me to pick and choose what I want to hear when I want to hear it. I subscribe to a few great podcasts and listen to them while I drive, work out, cook, clean, or a variety of other activities (which means it doesn’t take any additional time in my day to listen!).
2. Podcasts focused on a variety of topics, themes, and subjects
Not only can you control the influences (what podcasts you hear), you literally have thousands of choices of podcasts. Yes, that can appear overwhelming, but I love being able to be choosy with who I listen to and allow a voice in my life. There are continually new shows being created in every niche, so if you think you might like to listen to a podcast on a particular subject, there is likely one out there.
I had a great friend who use to say, “If it’s free, it’s for me!” I love podcasts because you can get endless content without spending a penny. Many podcasts give you incredible content–and you can sometimes learn more about a subject via podcasts than you could if you attended college classes (and you have to pay for college classes). It has often been stated that if you drive 12,000 miles a year, in three years time, if you listen to audio programs (like podcasts) in your car, it is equivalent to two years of college education. Whether or not it is true, using time to listen to podcasts gives you a boost in your understanding and propels you forward faster.
4. Many Podcasts Have Show Notes and Resources
Many podcasts today refer listeners back to a page on their website where an outline of the podcast is located along with any resources mentioned in the podcast. It may not seem like much, but this added benefit can help you locate information and resources quickly as well as help you scan text quickly for reference. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve listened to a podcast and later went to the show notes page to download a bonus freebie, look up a book mentioned, or grab a quote that was used.
5. A Community
One of the neat, and perhaps unexpected, things about podcasts is that it invites you to become a part of a community. People who listen to similar content become a tribe or community following the podcast. You can receive help with certain topics or situations and you can seek advice from others who share similar passions (whether through online forums, the podcast facebook page, etc).
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If you haven’t started listening to podcasts, I highly encourage you to do so. Podcasts have been a rich blessing in my life as I’ve looked for insight on a variety of topics.
Where to Start?
Hands down, the main hub of podcasts is still iTunes. iTunes has the biggest selection of podcasts—and whether or not you have Apple products, iTunes can be a great way to find a new podcast.
It’s simple to start—find a podcast you like, hit subscribe, and every time a new episode is released (for many podcasts it’s weekly), that episode/show will automatically appear in your iTunes.
Need a couple recommendations? Granted these are biased, but I strongly support the new podcasts in the Bravehearted Christian Podcast Network (and not just because the new deeperChristian Podcast is one of them):
Other Recommended Podcasts
For note, many of these podcasts are not Christian but they do have practical advice for certain topics. Please understand that I don’t wholeheartedly recommend everything they say or do (ie: please be Biblically discerning as you listen).