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You Are What You Listen To: 11 Podcasts To Inspire Yourself

You Are What You Listen To: 11 Podcasts To Inspire Yourself

The key advantage that audio brings us is convenience. We can listen while we’re commuting, exercising, or working, and the growth of podcasts are just starting.

As the popular saying goes, “You are who you surround yourself with.”

The same applies to what you read, what you watch, and in this case: what you listen to.

I’m an avid listener of podcasts, and I’ll get my hands on any show that will give me an edge in life.

To make your life simpler, here are 11 podcasts to inspire yourself.

1. Lewis Howes

Show: The School of Greatness
One-word description: Inspirational

Lewis Howes has been exploding in the podcasting scene over the past year and is consistently ranked as one of the top podcasts on the Health category of iTunes.

Notable guests on The School of Greatness includes Arianna Huffington, Tony Robbins, Tim Ferriss, and more, where they share how their journey started from the beginning to greatness.

With Lewis’ School of Greatness Book coming out in a few months, he has been putting out episodes 3 times a week, which includes guest interviews and solo rounds. My personal favorite is his 5-minute Fridays.

Lewis-Book

    2. Tim Ferriss

    Show: The Tim Ferriss Show
    One-word description: Analytical

    After hitting the NYTimes list with all 3 of his books, Tim Ferriss has been “experimenting” with his podcast show, which was awarded “Best of iTunes” in 2014.

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    The theme of The Tim Ferriss Show is “de-constructing excellence,” and with Tim’s vast network, he brings on the top performers in different industries to ask them questions like “what is your daily habit” and “who’s the first person you think of when you hear the word ‘success’?”

    With Tim’s quirky personality, you’ll also get to enjoy some random questions like “who’s the first person you think of when you hear ‘punchable’?”

    timferrissshowart-500x500

      3. James Altucher

      Show: The James Altucher Show
      One-word description: Transparent

      When most people think of James Altucher, they think honest, transparent, and vulnerable.

      James is not afraid to reveal it all, and help his listeners and readers learn from his mistakes, successes, and lessons.
      The great thing about James as a host is his curiosity.

      He’s willing to go above and beyond to ask his guests questions that the audience is already thinking in their heads.

      jamesaltucher

        4. Gary Vaynerchuk

        Show: The #AskGaryVee Show
        One-word description: Spontaneous

        Gary Vaynerchuk made it to the scene in the “Vlogging” world through his first show, Wine Library TV.

        Although The #AskGaryVee Show is intended to be “Video first,” he’s always keeping podcast listeners in mind by explaining the visuals of what’s happening on his show – and an added dose of spontaneity.

        Known as a social media guru, each episode is based around his fans asking him 3-5 questions on average on social media, where Gary gives his honest answer in return.

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        If you want your questions answered and a chance to be on the show:
        Tweet @garyvee with your question and #askgaryvee in the tweet.

        garyvee

          5.Gretchen Rubin

          Show: Happier with Gretchen Rubin
          One-word description: Happy

          Gretchen is a well-known NYTimes Best Selling author, mostly known for her book, Happiness Project.

          She’s now extending this brand and fanbase into audio with her new show, Happier with Gretchen Rubin, that she hosts with her sister Elizabeth Craft.

          The podcast is already getting millions of downloads within only a few months of launching.

          If you’re looking to increase your happiness in life, Happier with Gretchen Rubin is worth checking out.

          GretchenRubin_2343089b

            6. Jack & Suzy Welch

            Show: WelchCast
            One-word description: Sharp

            Jack and Suzy Welch may be defined as one of the most “Powerful Couples” of this decade.

            While Suzy is a former editor-in-chief at Harvard Business Review and a NYTimes Best Selling Author, Jack is recognized as one of the greatest CEO’s of all time from his success at General Electric.

            If you want to get career advice and tips from some of the most successful people of our time, tune into the WelchCast.

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            welclhcast

              7. Tai Lopez

              Show: Tai Lopez Show

              One-word description: Insightful

              Tai is famous for reading “a book a day” and provides insightful summaries from the best books he reads.

              What’s great about Tai’s reviews is not the simple summaries of his books, but his own personal anecdotes and lessons in life that he shares alongside the book reviews.

              tai

                8. Chalene Johnson

                Show: The Chalene Show
                One-word description: Energetic

                As a fitness trainer, social media expert, life coach, author, and speaker, there seems that there’s very few things that Chalene can’t do.

                What stands Chalene out from others is her level of energy that she brings to each episode, in addition to the insights and advice she provides on social media and business growth.

                If you want to get pumped and become a better business owner along the way, check out The Chalene Show.

                chalene

                  9. Brian Rose

                  Show: London Real
                  One-word description: Deep

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                  Have you ever met someone that can sit down with you in one moment, and a few hours fly by without you even noticing?

                  The host of London Real, Brian Rose, teaches us how to be a great listener, while bringing on amazing guests to share their journey from successful entrepreneurs, creatives, authors, and more.

                  Notable guests include: Robert Greene, Aubrey De Grey, and Guy Kawasaki.

                  london-real

                    10. Kevin Rose

                    Show: The Foundation
                    One-word description: Savvy

                    The Foundation is a classic for any tech entrepreneurs wanting to learn from the best. Host of the show, Kevin Rose, is the founder of Digg and currently acts as a Partner of Google Ventures.

                    What’s amazing about The Foundation is the quality of production and the guests that Kevin brings on, such as Elon Musk.

                    foundation

                      11. Jordan Harbinger

                      Show: Art of Charm
                      One-word description:
                      Idiosyncratic

                      The title of this show describes it all. Jordan Harbinger brings his charm with every episode, and teaches his listeners on how to become extraordinary men, along with his guests.

                      Receiving over a million downloads per month, The Art of Charm is the go-to place for any men looking to become more successful in their personal and professional lives.

                      artofcharm

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                        The Productivity Paradox: What Is It And How Can We Move Beyond It?

                        The Productivity Paradox: What Is It And How Can We Move Beyond It?

                        It’s a depressing adage we’ve all heard time and time again: An increase in technology does not necessarily translate to an increase in productivity.

                        Put another way by Robert Solow, a Nobel laureate in economics,

                        “You can see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics.”

                        In other words, just because our computers are getting faster, that doesn’t mean that that we will have an equivalent leap in productivity. In fact, the opposite may be true!

                        New York Times writer Matt Richel wrote in an article for the paper back in 2008 that stated, “Statistical and anecdotal evidence mounts that the same technology tools that have led to improvements in productivity can be counterproductive if overused.”

                        There’s a strange paradox when it comes to productivity. Rather than an exponential curve, our productivity will eventually reach a plateau, even with advances in technology.

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                        So what does that mean for our personal levels of productivity? And what does this mean for our economy as a whole? Here’s what you should know about the productivity paradox, its causes, and what possible solutions we may have to combat it.

                        What is the productivity paradox?

                        There is a discrepancy between the investment in IT growth and the national level of productivity and productive output. The term “productivity paradox” became popularized after being used in the title of a 1993 paper by MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson, a Professor of Management at the MIT Sloan School of Management, and the Director of the MIT Center for Digital Business.

                        In his paper, Brynjolfsson argued that while there doesn’t seem to be a direct, measurable correlation between improvements in IT and improvements in output, this might be more of a reflection on how productive output is measured and tracked.[1]

                        He wrote in his conclusion:

                        “Intangibles such as better responsiveness to customers and increased coordination with suppliers do not always increase the amount or even intrinsic quality of output, but they do help make sure it arrives at the right time, at the right place, with the right attributes for each customer.

                        Just as managers look beyond “productivity” for some of the benefits of IT, so must researchers be prepared to look beyond conventional productivity measurement techniques.”

                        How do we measure productivity anyway?

                        And this brings up a good point. How exactly is productivity measured?

                        In the case of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, productivity gain is measured as the percentage change in gross domestic product per hour of labor.

                        But other publications such as US Today, argue that this is not the best way to track productivity, and instead use something called Total Factor Productivity (TFP). According to US Today, TFP “examines revenue per employee after subtracting productivity improvements that result from increases in capital assets, under the assumption that an investment in modern plants, equipment and technology automatically improves productivity.”[2]

                        In other words, this method weighs productivity changes by how much improvement there is since the last time productivity stats were gathered.

                        But if we can’t even agree on the best way to track productivity, then how can we know for certain if we’ve entered the productivity paradox?

                        Possible causes of the productivity paradox

                        Brynjolfsson argued that there are four probable causes for the paradox:

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                        • Mis-measurement – The gains are real but our current measures miss them.
                        • Redistribution – There are private gains, but they come at the expense of other firms and individuals, leaving little net gain.
                        • Time lags – The gains take a long time to show up.
                        • Mismanagement – There are no gains because of the unusual difficulties in managing IT or information itself.

                        There seems to be some evidence to support the mis-measurement theory as shown above. Another promising candidate is the time lag, which is supported by the work of Paul David, an economist at Oxford University.

                        According to an article in The Economist, his research has shown that productivity growth did not accelerate until 40 years after the introduction of electric power in the early 1880s.[3] This was partly because it took until 1920 for at least half of American industrial machinery to be powered by electricity.”

                        Therefore, he argues, we won’t see major leaps in productivity until both the US and major global powers have all reached at least a 50% penetration rate for computer use. The US only hit that mark a decade ago, and many other countries are far behind that level of growth.

                        The paradox and the recession

                        The productivity paradox has another effect on the recession economy. According to Neil Irwin,[4]

                        “Sky-high productivity has meant that business output has barely declined, making it less necessary to hire back laid-off workers…businesses are producing only 3 percent fewer goods and services than they were at the end of 2007, yet Americans are working nearly 10 percent fewer hours because of a mix of layoffs and cutbacks in the workweek.”

                        This means that more and more companies are trying to do less with more, and that means squeezing two or three people’s worth of work from a single employee in some cases.

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                        According to Irwin, “workers, frightened for their job security, squeezed more productivity out of every hour [in 2010].”

                        Looking forward

                        A recent article on Slate puts it all into perspective with one succinct observation:

                        “Perhaps the Internet is just not as revolutionary as we think it is. Sure, people might derive endless pleasure from it—its tendency to improve people’s quality of life is undeniable. And sure, it might have revolutionized how we find, buy, and sell goods and services. But that still does not necessarily mean it is as transformative of an economy as, say, railroads were.”

                        Still, Brynjolfsson argues that mismeasurement of productivity can really skew the results of people studying the paradox, perhaps more than any other factor.

                        “Because you and I stopped buying CDs, the music industry has shrunk, according to revenues and GDP. But we’re not listening to less music. There’s more music consumed than before.

                        On paper, the way GDP is calculated, the music industry is disappearing, but in reality it’s not disappearing. It is disappearing in revenue. It is not disappearing in terms of what you should care about, which is music.”

                        Perhaps the paradox isn’t a death sentence for our productivity after all. Only time (and perhaps improved measuring techniques) will tell.

                        Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                        Reference

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