Ah, 2020. What a wild, heartbreaking year it’s been—one that’s kept us on our toes in ways bad and good and mediocre. It’s a year that has, for the most part, kept us confined to our homes and, as a result, has encouraged us to turn to simpler forms of entertainment to bide our time. Said entertainment came in the form of Zoom calls, a lot of streaming, and plenty of listening to podcasts too.
Today we’re sharing our team’s favorite podcasts from 2020, in case you’re looking for a morsel of entertainment and distraction to keep you occupied while cooking or going for a walk around the neighborhood or driving around town. If you have any podcast recommendations you’d like to send our way, please do share them in the comments!
This show is thirty or so minutes of true-life tales of murder, mayhem, and the macabre that affected royal families throughout history. My favorite episodes covered the lives and deaths of all of Henry VIII’s wives.
This is technically not a podcast but rather a serialized story. The Two Princes is a fairy tale not too unlike the ones we grew up with: handsome princes, feats of daring, and evil curses, with a positive LGBTQ message. Season three has incorporated songs into the narrative and is requested daily at my house.
I love this podcast for exactly what its name implies. I love personal growth and this show is an individual, artful, approachable take on that topic. The podcast hosts graciously explore the lessons they’re learning and how they are integrating them into their own lives.
Kate recently introduced me to this podcast. At its core, it’s a beautifully guided meditation that helps me find center in my life. It’s relaxing, empowering, centering, and grounding, and I’d highly recommend it.
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The Daily covers timely political and human interest topics alike in an investigative, empathetic manner. It’s the news I need without the anxiety.
This podcast includes insightful, timely reflections and thought-provoking conversations. It’s one of my favorite weekly listens.
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In a year heavy with news media and combative politics, this podcast was oddly soothing for me. History often serves as a good case study for big shifts in our culture because we have the benefit of hindsight, and this podcast dives deep into the misconceptions and misinformation that gets lost in the shuffle. If you want to dive in but are not sure where to start, the five-part series on Princess Diana is brilliantly nuanced, informative, and heartbreaking.
This podcast covers exactly what the title states. The host of the award-winning true-crime series, Criminal, Pheobe Judge reads us a mystery novel a chapter at a time. Who doesn’t want to escape to another world narrated with a voice like THAT?
This show includes practical tips on how we can all feel better each day, brought to us by reputable journalist, Dan Harris. Through interviews with experts on a wide range of topics, the podcast covers everything from mindset shifts to micro-habits that can change our days for the better.
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I LOVED discovering this podcast in which fiction writers read their work to the podcast audience. It’s soothing, evocative, and well worth a listen.
This is not a feel-good podcast in any way, but it’s incredibly interesting nonetheless. In each episode, the hosts unpack cults and why exactly people are so drawn to them. If you liked The Vow or Scientology and the Aftermath, this podcast is a good, watered-down version of those documentaries.
Naomi Ekperigin is one of my favorite comics out there, and when I discovered she hosted a podcast with her husband, Andy Beckerman, I was absolutely delighted. On the podcast, Naomi and Andy interview couples of all kinds—be it partners, siblings, or friends—about their relationships. It’s a very funny, highly insightful show I’d recommend to anyone.
Bad on Paper is hosted by Grace Atwood (of The Stripe) and Becca Freeman. In weekly episodes, they dive into conversations about life, dating, careers, and more, while also interviewing guests from a variety of backgrounds. It’s one of those shows that makes me feel like I’m listening in on a conversation with two friends—a welcome respite from plenty of time spent alone this year.
In this podcast, comedian Nicole Byer interviews guests about their relationships and dating lives while sharing experiences from her own end of the spectrum. The interviews also delve into discussions on careers, politics, and more. It’s a hilarious, intriguing exploration of human nature, which, in my humble opinion, is the makeup of many of the best podcasts out there.
BY Jackie Saffert - December 21, 2020
Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.