I just learned the month of March is #trypod month. A time where podcast hosts encourage listeners to introduce them to friends, family, coworkers. It is a concerted effort to spread the word about this medium. I am not a podcast host, but when I heard about #trypod month I had to write a blog post about listening to podcasts. I have grown to love podcasts, especially as a mom.
I first began listening 5 years ago when I became a mom and it continues to be a mainstay in my weekly life. I know people listen to podcasts for different reasons, but here are the 5 reasons podcasts have benefitted me as a mom
1. I can have adult discussion. Ok I realize I am not actually conversing, but I can listen to adult discussion in my day, even if I don't make it out into the world. I got to meet one of my favorite podcast hosts and told her I felt like I already knew her. She said she hears that a lot from listeners. When I can't get a hold of friends or get out, listening to a podcast is like having a friend over. Obviously a podcast is not a replacement for relationship, but I have found it is a great way to get some adult discussion into my day.
2. I can continue to learn and stimulate my mind. I have learned a lot listening to podcasts. Much of my initial learning about how to make money with an online blog happened while doing dishes and listening to a podcast. I have learned home management skills, personality types, business principles, new literature, ideas for child rearing, food and recipe ideas - to name just a few. The possibilities are endless with what you can learn listening to a podcast. As moms we often don't have a lot of time to read books, so podcasts have been a great way to continue to learn.
3. It adds interest to mundane tasks. I listen to podcasts while cleaning, cooking, folding laundry. I can do a mundane task and listen very easily. And sometimes this even helps me get excited about cleaning because it means I get to listen to a favorite podcast while doing it. I also often listen to a podcast while I am working out at the Y. The length is a perfect amount for a workout. My husband and I also listen to podcast episodes when we go on road trips while the kids are napping or sleeping.
4. It is like going to the library on my phone - best of all podcast episodes are free! I can subscribe to podcasts and they will automatically pop up on my podcast app. I just go in and listen. They stay in my podcast cue and I can listen when I am able.
5. It is just plain fun! Some podcasts are lighthearted, others are more thought provoking. But overall they are a lot of fun.
If you are interested in listening to a podcast but don't know how, my favorite method is to search in the Podcast app on my iphone. It is a default app, so if you have an iPhone it should already be on your phone. You can listen to individual episodes through the app or subscribe to podcasts and new episodes will automatically load. Another method that works well is to search and listen through iTunes. Most podcast hosts also have a webpage where they include show notes from their episodes, as well as a way to listen through that webpage.
One of the podcast hosts I frequently listen to, Tsh Oxenreider, wrote a great blog post about Podcasts, including how to listen to podcasts as well as some of her favorites.
Here is the the NPR press release telling a bit more about #trypod month.
And, here is a list of my favorite podcasts on my favorites page.