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Last Updated on January 14, 2021

20 Motivational Podcasts to Start Following in 2021

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20 Motivational Podcasts to Start Following in 2021

We could all use a little motivation here and there. Sometimes those pick-me-ups are useful for providing us with the inspiration and direction we need to take that next step towards our goals!

This is why I’ve rounded up some of the best motivational podcasts that you should consider listening to and subscribing to for 2021.

1. No More Excuses: Monday Motivation

    It’s no mystery that the trend is to dread Mondays. Nobody looks forward to a full work week ahead of them before they get another chance to lay back, relax, and actually do some of the things they do enjoy.

    But imagine how much better our weeks would be if we were actually motivated for them instead of dreading them.

    This is exactly what the “No More Excuses” podcast is all about. Sandi Ballard helps motivate people for their upcoming weeks, encourages people to be more accountable for their lives, and provides helpful self-improvement tips that we can all take action on.

    Listen to the Podcast Here.

    2. Meaningful Work, Meaningful Life

      The search for meaning and life significant in our careers and personal lives is probably one of the most challenging pursuits we’ll ever encounter.

      Luckily for us, there are a few motivational podcasts out there surrounding this topic which can provide us with useful advice on our journeys.

      Few provide listeners with better advice than Francine’s “Meaningful Work, Meaningful Life” podcast. Through a variety of tips, interviews, and guides, Francine helps us to re-ignite our inner sparks to discover the answers to these truly challenging life questions.

      Listen to the Podcast Here.

      3. The Tim Ferriss Show

        The “Tim Ferriss Show” is one of those motivational podcasts that you won’t be able to stop listening to after you start.

        Author of the best-seller The 4-Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss, interviews individuals from the top of their respective fields to give his listeners an insider examination of exactly what it is that these people do to perform at their best, continually improve, and how to overcome challenges along the way.

        It’s no wonder that so many people have this podcast at the top of their personal lists. The wealth of information one gains about a wide variety of topics is truly astounding!

        Listen to the Podcast Here.

        4. TED Radio Hour

          If you already enjoy TED Talks, then you’ll love TED Radio Hour. For those of you who are not familiar with TED Talks, they’re basically small speech presentations that provide the audience with thought-provoking ideas, inventions, research, and discoveries.

          Hosted by Guy Raz, the TED Radio Hour takes a bunch of these topics around a particular theme and provides us with an hour’s worth of insights to get our minds moving!

          These presentations are then supplemented with side-interviews with the original presenters which only adds to the engaging nature of the content.

          Listen to the Podcast Here.

          5. How I Built This

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            This is another motivational podcast hosted by Guy Raz. Basically, the “How I Built This” podcast immerses listeners into the story of a company for a full hour.

            Though the companies range in the field of expertise and size, these companies are typically highly-reputable.

            The insights presented are invaluable to anyone interested in entrepreneurship. If you’re interested in potentially launching your own idea or company one day, then this is one of the motivational podcasts that you have to try listening to.

            Listen to the Podcast Here.

            6. Art of Charm

              The “Art of Charm podcast” with hosts AJ Harbinger and Johnny Dzubak, walks us through how to master human dynamics, relationships, and becoming your best self.

              This podcast is not only motivational but provides a truly unique perspective from the majority of entrepreneurial-based shows. Whereas most focus on self-improvement, high-performance habits, and steps for business success, the “Art of Charm” focuses much more on the relationship dimension.

              This podcast helps us to understand how to simply become better with people because our success is so highly dependent on our social and emotional IQ. These episodes, if you implement the lessons they contain, will change not only how you perceive relationships, but possibly your whole life focus as well.

              Listen to the Podcast Here.

              7. Mindvalley Podcast

                Vishen Lakhiani, the founder of Mindvalley, hosts this motivational podcast and provides tons of welcomed material encouraging our personal growth.

                It’s quite likely that your personal development journey may be sparked or redirected after listening to a few of the expert interviews hosted on this podcast.

                Though a wide variety of topics are discussed, there is definitely some favoritism shown towards the mind, relationships, health, and performance.

                So if these topics interest you, make sure you add this one to your list of motivational podcasts!

                Listen to the Podcast Here.

                8. Lead to Win

                  It’s incredible how many useful pieces of information I’ve been able to take away from listening to Michael Hyatt’s “Lead to Win” podcast. Not only has this podcast outlined how I can best go about achieving my career and personal goals, but it’s also helped me understand the steps I should be taking to lead a more successful life!

                  Anyone who is in a leadership role, or looking to take on more leadership qualities, should be listening to this podcast.

                  Hyatt is an expert in the field of leadership and you will not regret listening to some of the invaluable insights that he has to offer.

                  Listen to the Podcast Here.

                  9. Rise Together

                    This is a podcast hosted by the dynamite husband and wife duo Rachel and Dave Hollis. Each of their episodes provides listeners with advice regarding how they can work with others they have relationships with to continually be striving to bring out the best in each other.

                    It truly helps listeners to be more mindful within their relationships and how each of us can work towards becoming better and more supportive partners as well as in our everyday relationships.

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                    Listen to the Podcast Here.

                    10. The Dave Ramsey Show

                      If you’re looking to improve your financial state this year, then add this one to your list of motivational podcasts because this one will serve you endlessly.

                      Simply put, Dave Ramsey is a master of inspiring people to change through life-altering advice on topics such as building wealth, eliminating debt, and personal finances.

                      The proof really is in the pudding with this one. “The Dave Ramsey Show” has been named as one of Apple’s most downloaded shows in 2018.

                      Though people’s opinions may vary about Ramsey’s theories, it’s undeniable that he really knows what he’s talking about and that you will benefit from the financial advice he can provide.

                      Listen to the Podcast Here.

                      11. Entrepreneurs on Fire

                        For the entrepreneurs, or aspiring entrepreneurs reading this article, take special note of this motivational podcast. From identifying your niche to outlining your business plan, the “Entrepreneurs on Fire” podcast hosted by John Dumas has got you covered.

                        This is a daily show through which John interviews some of the top entrepreneurs in their fields.

                        If you want inspiration to shoot for the stars, achieve your dreams, and take your life to that next level as you search for your passion and life purpose, this one is for you.

                        Listen to the Podcast Here.

                        12. Eventual Millionaire

                          The “Eventual Millionaire” podcast hosted by Jaime Masters provides a window into the resources and strategies that these individuals utilize to make huge strides and achieve massive success in their fields.

                          Possibly the most unique aspect of this podcast is its message and promise to teach listeners these money-making strategies while ensuring that they never sacrifice what’s important to them.

                          That may seem insignificant at first, but typically to achieve any type of success we must make huge sacrifices. So knowing that there are strategies out there that help us avoid some of those sacrifices makes this podcast worth a listen.

                          Listen to the Podcast Here.

                          13. The One You Feed

                            From mental health, mindfulness, positive leadership, self-awareness and improvement, all the way to human dynamics, and faith and spirituality this podcast has it all.

                            Eric Zimmer uses his podcast to walk people through some influential ideas regarding what habits and strategies we can each begin utilizing to stay on the positive side of life.

                            In a world that seems increasingly fixated upon the negative and our individual flaws, this podcast is a welcomed breath of fresh air.

                            At the very least, you’ll feel a little more positive in your everyday life. At the most, you could identify a few things that work for you to keep you continually finding that silver lining and motivated to move forward!

                            Listen to the Podcast Here.

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                            14. Happier with Gretchen Rubin

                              Building off the last suggestion is the “Happier” podcast hosted by Gretchen Rubin. She provides some tips and practical advice for becoming happier and strategies that we can use to begin learning new good habits.

                              With all this positivity surrounding you daily, it’ll be difficult for you to begin not feeling a little better, a little more inspired, and a lot more motivated!

                              Listen to the Podcast Here.

                              15. Hidden Brain

                                This podcast is from the National Public Radio family of podcasts and is definitely one you should consider listening to. This is another podcast that was named as one of Apple’s Most Downloaded shows in 2018.

                                This podcast offers a more scientific approach to understanding why we do the things that we do and helps us to understand not only the world around us but better understand ourselves as well.

                                It will help you to understand what’s driving your behaviors and decisions as well as how you can begin to influence those forces.

                                Not only this podcast very insightful, but it’s also highly entertaining which put it a cut above the vast majority of other motivational podcasts in its niche.

                                Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                16. Changeability

                                  I’ve found that the “Changeability” podcast is great for commuting. Hosts Kathryn Bryant and Julian Illman utilize each episode to provide useful strategies and tools that anyone can implement to bring more success and happiness to their life.

                                  Kathryn and Julian combine information and topics from the fields of science, business, spirituality, entertainment, and sports to generate enriched and engaging discussions on how to manage our minds and how we can begin making changes to more frequently be putting our best foot forward.

                                  Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                  17. Sports Motivation Podcast

                                    This one is for the athletes out there as well as for the people looking to get more motivated about a particular sport or physical activity.

                                    This podcast is hosted by former NFL running back Olaniyi Sobomehim (Niyi Sobo) who aims to provide his listeners with information on how they can dominate during game-day and achieve their athletic goals.

                                    From creating a winning mindset to setting goals, mastering our mental and emotional states, and visualizing our success, there is something for everyone to take away from this podcast.

                                    If you’re into athletics, this is one of the motivational podcasts you won’t want to miss.

                                    Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                    18. Good Life Project

                                      The “Good Life Project” podcast is a great motivational podcast to listen to if you’re looking to raise your spirits quickly and feel a little better.

                                      Simply put, this podcast presents listeners with a variety of stories of people living meaningful, purpose-driven, connected, and engaging lives.

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                                      Additionally, on this podcast, you’ll listen to some of the most influential authors, speakers, and experts talk about the steps and secrets required for inspired living, how our brains work, and alternative approaches we can take to obtain health and well-being when the regular routes are no longer an option.

                                      It motivates us to achieve these types of lives as well and truly shows that joy can be found anywhere in life. What truly matters, is that we understand ourselves well enough to know what this means to us personally.

                                      Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                      19. Inspire Nation

                                        The “Inspire Nation” podcast will be your guide to living the life you’ve always wanted by helping you to reach your highest potential and realize your dreams.

                                        Self-help expert, Michael Sandler hosts this engaging show for an hour every single day, so you’ll always have episodes to choose from.

                                        Topics such as the Law of Attraction, health, spirituality, and personal growth are covered with guests of the show including influential personal-growth gurus, authors, and speakers.

                                        There is a to-be-learned from these individuals, so sit back and enjoy as the wisdom pours out of the speakers and into your ears providing you with useful tips and tricks that you can implement to become inspired in your own life.

                                        Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                        20. This is Your Life

                                          This is another motivational podcast for the leaders out there. Not only will this one motivate you, but the “This Is Your Life” podcast will help you understand how you can grow into the leader you’ve always wanted to be.

                                          Not surprisingly, this podcast is also hosted by leadership expert Michael Hyatt and emphasizes a simple yet vital message,

                                          “Win at Work. Succeed at Life. Lead with Confidence.”

                                          And Michael has been quoted that the purpose of the podcast is to

                                          “give you the clarity, courage, and tools you need to stop all the frenzy and start living with focus.”

                                          The insights that leaders can gain simply from listening to this podcast are invaluable and make it one of the top motivational podcasts in this niche.

                                          If you’re looking to get motivated or become a better leader than do yourself a huge favor and subscribe to this podcast!

                                          Listen to the Podcast Here.

                                          Final Thoughts

                                          And there you have it! 20 of the most impactful, motivational and inspirational podcasts at your fingertips for you to begin listening to this year.

                                          Some of these may be new to you, some you probably already listen to. Regardless, I hope that this list has piqued your interest and encouraged you to check out a few of these motivational podcasts.

                                          Also, if you have further suggestions for motivational podcasts people should consider please either send them to me directly or leave your comment down below for other readers!

                                          More Inspirational Podcasts

                                          Featured photo credit: Blaz Erzetic via unsplash.com

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                                          Mark Lynch

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                                          Published on September 27, 2021

                                          What Is Incentive Motivation And Does It Work?

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                                          What Is Incentive Motivation And Does It Work?

                                          We’ve all needed a bit of inspiration at some time in our lives. In the past year or two, that need most likely has grown. Who hasn’t been trying to shed those extra pounds we put on during the pandemic? Who hasn’t felt the need to fake a little enthusiasm at joining yet another Zoom call? Who hasn’t been trying to get excited about trekking back into the office for a 9 to 5 (longer if you add in the commute)? Feeling “meh” is a sign of our times. So, too, is incentive motivation, a way to get back our spark, our drive, and our pursuit of the things we say we want most.

                                          In this article, I’ll talk about what incentive motivation is and how it works.

                                          What Is Incentive Motivation?

                                          Incentive motivation is an area of study in psychology focused on human motivation. What is it that gets us to go from couch potato to running a marathon? What spurs us to get the Covid vaccine—or to forgo it? What is it that influences us to think or act in a certain way? Incentive motivation is concerned with the way goals influence behavior.[1] By all accounts, it works if the incentive being used holds significance for the person.

                                          The Roots of Incentive Motivation

                                          Incentive motivation’s roots can be traced back to when we were children. I’m sure many of us have similar memories of being told to “eat all our veggies” so that we would “grow up to be big and strong,” and if we did eat those veggies, we would be rewarded with a weekend trip to a carnival or amusement park or playground of choice. The incentive of that outing was something we wanted enough to have it influence our behavior.

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                                          Growing up, incentive motivation continues to play a major role in what we choose to do. For example, while we may not have relished the idea of spending years studying, getting good grades, pursuing advanced degrees, and graduating with sizeable debt from student loans, a great many of us decided to do just that. Why? Because the end goal of a career, a coveted title, and the associated incentives of financial reward and joy in doing something we love were powerful motivators.

                                          One researcher who believes in the power of incentive motivation is weight management expert, co-author of the book State of Slim, and co-founder of the transformational weight loss program of the same name, Dr. Holly Wyatt. Her work with her clients has proven time and again that when motivation fizzles, incentives can reignite those motivational fires.

                                          “Eat more veggies, exercise, keep track of my weight: These things and more DO work, but bottom line, you gotta keep doing them. Setting up rituals and routines to put your efforts on auto-pilot is one way. And along the way, the use of both external and internal motivators helps keep people on track. External motivation sources are those things outside of ourselves that help to motivate us. They’re powerful, like pouring gasoline on a fire. But they may not last very long. Internal motivators are more tied into the reasons WHY we want to reach our goals. In my State of Slim weight loss program, we spend a lot of time on what I call ‘peeling back the onion’ to find the WHY. I think the internal motivators are more powerful, especially for the long-term, but they may take longer to build. They’re the hot coals that keep our motivational fires burning.”

                                          Examples of Incentive Motivation

                                          In the way of incentive motivation, specific to the external motivators, Dr. Wyatt challenges her clients to commit to changing just one behavior that will help them reach their weight loss goals. Clients must then agree to a “carrot” or a “stick” as either their reward for accomplishing what they say they will do or as their punishment for falling short. Those incentives might be something like enjoying a spa day if they do the thing they said they would do or sweating it out while running up and down the stairwell of their apartment building a certain number of times as punishment for not following through.

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                                          Whatever they choose, the goal must be something they really want, and the incentive must be something that matters to them enough to influence their behaviors in reaching those goals. Some people are more motivated by some sort of meaningful reward (a carrot) whereas, other people are more motivated by some sort of negative consequence or the taking away of a privilege (the stick).

                                          Another example of incentive motivation is playing out currently with companies and government entities offering perks to people who get the Covid vaccine. Nationwide, offers are being made in the way of lottery tickets, cash prizes, concert seats, free admission to events and discounts for food, and even free drink at local restaurants and bars. The list of incentives being offered to the public to increase vaccination rates is pretty extensive and quite creative.[2]  These incentives are financial, social, and even hit on moral sensibilities. But is this particular incentive motivation working?

                                          Remember that a key to incentive motivation working is if the individual puts importance on the reward being received on the ultimate goal. So, not all incentives will motivate people in the same way. According to Stephen L. Franzoi, “The value of an incentive can change over time and in different situations.”[3]

                                          How Does Incentive Motivation Differ from Other Types of Motivators?

                                          Incentive motivation is just one type of motivating force that relies on external factors. While rewards are powerful tools in influencing behaviors, a few other options may be more aligned with who you are and what gets you moving toward your goals.

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                                          Fear Motivation

                                          In many ways, being motivated by fear is the very opposite of being motivated by incentives. Rather than pursuing some reward, it’s the avoidance of some consequence or painful punishment that sparks someone into action. For example, married couples may “forsake all others” not out of love or commitment but out of a fear that they may be “taken to the cleaners” by their spouses if their infidelities are revealed.

                                          Another example wherein fear becomes the great motivator is one we’re hearing about more and more as we’re coming out of this pandemic—the fear of being poor. The fear of being poor has kept many people in jobs they hate. It’s only now that we see a reversal as headlines are shining a light on just how many workers are quitting and refusing to go back to the way things were.

                                          Social Motivation

                                          Human beings are social creatures. The desire to belong is a powerful motivator. This type of social motivation sparks one’s behavior in ways that, hopefully, result in an individual being accepted by a certain group or other individuals.

                                          The rise of the Internet and the explosion of social media engagement has been both positive and negative in its power to motivate us to be included among what during our school days would be called “the cool kids” or “cliques” (jocks, nerds, artsy, gamers, etc.). We probably all have experienced at one time or another the feelings associated with “not being chosen”—whether to be on a team to play some game or as the winning candidate for some job or competition. Social rejection can make or break us.

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                                          Before You Get Up and Go…

                                          Know that, especially during these challenging times, it’s “normal” and very much “okay” to feel a lack of motivation. Know, too, that external motivators, such as those we’ve talked about in this article, can be great tools to get your spark back. We’ve only touched on a few here. There are many more—both external and internal.

                                          Remember that these external motivators, such as incentive motivations, are only as powerful as the importance placed on the reward by the individual. It’s also important to note that if there isn’t an aligned internal motivation, the results will more than likely be short-lived.

                                          For example, losing a certain amount of weight because you want to fit into some outfit you intend to wear at some public event may get you to where you want to be. But will it hold up after your party? Or will those pounds find their way back to you? If you want to be rewarded at work with that trip to the islands because you’ve topped the charts in sales and hustle to make your numbers, will you be motivated again and again for that same incentive? Or will you need more and more to stay motivated?

                                          Viktor Frankl, the 20th-century psychiatrist, Holocaust survivor, and author of the best-selling book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is quoted as having said, “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.” As important as external motivators like incentives may be in influencing behaviors, the key is always to align them with one’s internal “why”—only then will the results be long-lived.

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                                          So, how might incentive motivation influence you and your behavior toward goals? Knowing your answer might keep you energized no matter what your journey and help to further your successes.

                                          Featured photo credit: Atharva Tulsi via unsplash.com

                                          Reference

                                          [1] Britannica: Incentive motivation
                                          [2] National Governors Association: COVID-19 Vaccine Incentives
                                          [3] verywellmind: The Incentive Theory of Motivation

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