Is coronavirus anxiety hitting home? These life-affirming self-care podcasts can help you to de-stress and relieve anxiety, as well as teaching you need-to-know strategies that can help improve your emotional wellbeing.
This surreal new world of coronavirus we live in is a scary place indeed.
Not only do we have to contend with the cabin-fever pressures of lockdown, but many of us are also battling to save businesses or care for loved ones under conditions that feel almost impossible. And all that before you even count the impact of a relentless, stress-inducing news cycle into the mix.
There are shows which revolve around honest conversations about mental health, others that aim to help listeners create a sustainable work-life balance, and still more that teach the value of mindfulness and meditation.
So shut down those notifications, line up one of these listens and get ready to discover a few easy ways to better look after yourself – we promise the world will still be there when you’re finished.
Self-care podcasts: Untangle
Produced by the people behind the Meditation Studio app, Untangle focuses on “inspiring, uncensored stories from people who have untangled from society’s giant rule book to create a meaningful life”. Each episode will teach you how to slow down, reduce your stress levels and create a feeling of calm when you need it most. However, be warned – after listening to just one episode, you may well become convinced that meditation is the answer to all of the world’s problems.
Self-care podcasts: The One You Feed
The One You Feed revolves around an ancient parable that says we all have two wolves within us: one good, and one bad. The one that wins is the one you feed. So every week, creators Eric Zimmer and Chris Forbes curate conversations with experts across the mental health sector on how to feed your good wolf, and create a life worth living. Zimmer is a former heroin addict turned behavioural coach, and together, the pair tackle a full range of topics from healing poetry to grief mechanisms and how to steady a spiralling mind.
Self-care podcasts: Talking in Circles
In this podcast, host Laura Miller navigates strikingly honest conversations about mental health and work with writers, creatives and generally brilliant women (and a few men). While it’s helpful and interesting to simply hear others open up about the things they don’t usually talk about, there are also plenty of strategies to be gleaned for dealing with the common stresses of work and life.
Self-care podcasts: The Pineapple Project
The Pineapple Project podcast from Australia’s ABC Radio is all about taking life’s “prickly bits” and making them that much sweeter and easier to deal with. Hosted by journalist Jan Fran, it’s a little lighter than many wellbeing podcasts in the genre – you can expect a generous sprinkling of spoofs, kooky sound effects and Fran’s trademark humour – but the subject matter is often quite heavy. Themes vary from overcoming social anxiety to funeral planning for amateurs. A lovely, reassuring listen, even in the darker territory it navigates.
Self-care podcasts: Selfie
Excellently billed as “a podcast about self-care and other shit”, this podcast sees Sarah James and Kristen Howerton discuss the healthier approaches we can all take to our everyday lives. Sarah is a blogger while Kristin is a psychotherapist, and together they bring both social and scientific research to their refreshing and open conversations about finding better ways to look after the mind, body and spirit.
Self-care podcasts: Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations
Oprah Winfrey has been teaching fans to “live your best life” for years, so it should come as no surprise that she has a podcast dedicated to the importance of taking time for yourself. SuperSoul Conversations sees Oprah interview thought-leaders, best-selling authors and spiritual luminaries about their journeys to personal fulfilment, and she also chats to health and wellness experts about the most appropriate and effective ways we can look after ourselves in a challenging world.
Self-care podcasts: Feel Better, Live More
Author and GP Dr Rangan Chatterjee is the kind of medical pro you want in your life. The aim of his podcast is to break down healthy living into easy, digestible steps via interviews with leading researchers and wellbeing experts. He’s empathetic yet practical in his approach, and the advice he unveils – covering physical, emotional and spiritual health – can be used to used to bring about real-life changes from day one (no quackery required).
Self-care podcasts: The Thrive Global Podcast
Arianna Huffington is no stranger to the perils of neglecting self-care. As the story goes, she had been working 18-hour days, and was at home checking her emails, when she collapsed from exhaustion – breaking her cheekbone in the process. The incident proved a wake-up call for Huffington, who has since dedicated much of her career to encouraging others to prioritise and safeguard their own wellbeing. This interview-based podcast contains a wealth of advice about how you can protect yourself from burnout and overwork, and go from “surviving to thriving”.
Self-care podcasts: The Minimalists
Cult favourites Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, AKA The Minimalists, have built a career around helping people learn how to live with less. In this podcast, they expand that concept to all areas of life – from tackling digital saturation to guidance on how to remove toxic relationships from your life. While their advice on creating a minimalist lifestyle can be brutal (basically, get rid of all your stuff) they also share lots of sensible and actionable advice for learning how to live a healthier, more mindful, life.
Self-care podcasts: Happy Place
In her critically acclaimed podcast, Fearne Cotton expands upon the ideas she wrote about in her 2017 book Happy by interviewing a number of high profile friends and celebrities about their experiences with mental health issues and learning what brings them joy every day. Guests so far include Dawn French, Paloma Faith, Matt Haig, Tom Daley, Maisie Williams and Poorna Bell, all whom have provided helpful insights for staying upbeat and positive when faced with the daily stresses of a hectic, fast-paced treadmill.
This feature was originally published in 2018 and has been updated throughout
Images: Getty / Courtesy of podcasts
Helen Booth is a London-based writer, digital editor and part-time maker who loves interiors, crafts and keeping tabs on trends. She also co-founded the weekly newsletter Lunch Hour Links.