We know the feeling: you’re spending time trying to accomplish your goals, but something seems... off. Maybe your morning routine has felt a bit slow, or you just can’t meet deadlines with the same drive and power as usual.
Whether you’re struggling with being productive or just trying to get an extra boost of motivation, tuning into a productivity podcast can be exactly what you need.
How Are Productivity Podcasts Beneficial?
For many, the idea of listening to a podcast about being productive can seem silly. After all, we all have very different lives which require us to be productive in different ways and do very different work. How could some podcast host you’ve never met know the secret to what will make you more productive?
The truth is that many productivity podcast hosts are experts in the niche of productivity. Some of them are life coaches or business consultants, and virtually all of them have experience in helping others’ work habits.
Plus, a lot of productivity podcasts invite new guests weekly. Just by listening to a few episodes of the right series, you could hear invaluable advice from a CEO, an Olympic medalist, a public speaker, or a professor of psychology.
When you read a blog or a self-help book, you’re lucky if you get the perspective of one great author. Podcasts are different, and frequently include an open dialogue where ideas can be talked about in a conversational and digestible way.
Even if you don’t get personalized advice every episode, just listening to people enthusiastically talk about productivity might be beneficial. According to a 2016 study from UC Berkeley, listening to narrative stories (like podcasts) can stimulate and alter the chemistry of your brain.
As we enter 2023, productivity is changing. A lot more of us are working independently, remotely, with new responsibilities, or as freelancers.
Whatever your work challenges might be, it’s great to use the numerous advantages of listening to a podcast for productivity. Let’s take a look at some of the best ones below:
Best Productivity Podcasts
In The 5 AM Miracle, host Jeff Sanders brings his insight as a productivity coach to discuss all things productivity, from cleaning up your workspace to taking breaks, and everything in between.
Sanders’s show mainly consists of medium-length episodes. If hour-long discussions aren’t your thing and 5-minute shorts aren’t long enough for you, The 5 AM Miracle is a great compromise. Most of the episodes are usually somewhere around 30 minutes.
If you are into extended talks or bite-sized chunks, don’t worry. The podcast still has plenty of quick tip episodes, in addition to deeper discussions with a variety of guests.
The show’s episodes with guests are some of its most popular. Sanders interviews notable self-help figures, authors, athletes, corporate executives, and more! This is a place where the podcast really shines, due to the host’s ability to communicate in a friendly, simple way.
In fact, Jeff Sanders’s relatability is a key reason the show has over 10 million downloads! He has a cool demeanor which makes discussions of productivity and healthy habits fun and interesting, and allows his conversations with guests to feel more natural.
So what’s with the name? Sanders believes that healthy habits are best formed before breakfast. The 5 AM part is optional, but beginning the day with productivity is also the philosophy of his book, which shares the name of the podcast.
Above all, The 5 AM Miracle stresses one thing: you CAN do it! The show doesn’t try to narrow down on specific habits that can only be done by a few people. Instead, it talks about productivity techniques that you can start using right now.
Altogether, this podcast is great for someone who wants to get some valuable information and concrete advice without having to invest their time into long, cerebral episodes.
Tim Ferriss basically invented the modern drive for productivity. His bestselling book, The 4 Hour Workweek, has become a manifesto for experimenting in entrepreneurship and occupational independence. His podcast? Even more groundbreaking.
The Tim Ferriss Show can be described as the ultimate productivity show. Ferriss describes it as the place “where it is my job to deconstruct world-class performers to tease out the routines, habits, et cetera that you can apply to your own life.”
Ferriss might be the most well-known of anyone on this list, and he often features high-profile celebrities on the show. Some of his more recent guests include Margaret Atwood, Sarah Silverman, David Blaine, Jane Goodall, and Jordan Peterson.
If you want to hear in-depth conversations with top intellectuals, artists, and performers, this is the show for you. It’s uncommon for Ferriss not to feature a guest, and even less common for an episode to be under an hour in length.
You might not be into this if you’re looking strictly for corporate productivity tips. Ferriss’s episodes always cover a lot of topics, some of which are only loosely related to productivity.
For a number of fans however, this is what makes the show truly great. Listeners love knowing that a two-hour episode will feature lengthy conversations about any topic that can lead to a better life. You might learn about how Navy SEALs train or you might hear about the potential of psychedelic medicine. Whatever you learn will be informative and valuable.
Many productivity podcasts discuss the work of productivity experts and no one else. In The Tim Ferriss Show, you might hear from a nutritionist, speaker of 10 languages, alternative medicine advocate, negotiation expert, actor, medical doctor, or professor. It’s a great choice if you’re looking to expand your worldly knowledge while you get more productive!
If you’re trying to find a podcast for productivity that combines practical tips with moral support, The Intentional Advantage is the show for you. Like many productivity podcasters, host Tanya Dalton is a public speaker and author that’s dedicated years to studying and writing about productivity.
But her business-oriented background gives her podcast an extra sense of strength and passion not found in other shows. Dalton started a business from scratch with only 3 employees, which grew to 7 figures in less than two years! Moreover, she did so while prioritizing a healthy work-life balance and maintaining a strong sense of discipline.
The show manages to find a healthy balance in format and content that appeals to a wide audience. Each episode is about 35 minutes on average and usually focuses on a specific area of self-improvement.
Dalton’s life lessons are mindset oriented. Instead of discussing the latest in productivity technology and methods, you’ll find episodes with titles like “Living On Purpose” and “Letting Go of the Perfect Plan”. This is the genius of the podcast: it gives motivational advice to everyone instead of appealing to a specific niche.
Even for productivity podcasts, this one is especially upbeat and exciting. There’s just something about Dalton’s attitude and perspective on life that makes listeners feel like they just had a strong cup of coffee. It’s truly inspiring and goes to show that her philosophy of mind over matter is truly possible.
The Intentional Advantage has a sense of authenticity that other podcasts just lack. Dalton doesn’t just give you obvious tips and try to sell you a course; she explains what decisions to make in order to truly make your life better.
One example is her recent decision to quit social media. If you know anything about businesses or marketing in the 21st century, you know how important social media is: it can show us what the latest trends are and what people are paying attention to, but it’s also a huge time waster and total productivity killer.
It’s easy to see that this podcast cares about its listeners. Every episode is filled with well-researched, practical advice. Frequently, Dalton will read fan mail and answer questions personally. Guests aren’t a common occurrence of the show, but that only leaves more room for the motivation to speak directly to the listener.
Overall, it doesn’t matter if you want hard science or motivational support. The Intentional Advantage is a great podcast for productivity.
For people looking to seriously maximize their productivity, Jocko Willink’s Jocko Podcast is the perfect choice. Willink (a retired Navy SEAL Commander) and his co-host Echo Charles discuss self-discipline & leadership on a whole other level, pioneered by Willink’s philosophy of “extreme ownership”.
This philosophy, detailed in Willink’s bestselling book of the same name, is all about taking responsibility for everything in your life, even the things you can’t seem to control. That isn’t to say that Willink believes in unhealthy self-blame. The strategy is focused on trying to take responsibility for more and more parts of your life-long term, eventually giving you total freedom and control over your life.
This idea that “discipline = freedom” is another core component of Willink’s ideas on productivity and task management. It’s the basis of many core ideas discussed throughout the show.
These episodes are long. They are known to have a number of reappearing guests, most of which are tenured veterans with a keen understanding of military strategy and history. Each episode is usually centered around a historical conflict, combat manual, or great warrior.
Listeners can appreciate the detail and focus baked into every episode of Jocko Podcast. In episodes that cover the contents of combat manuals, Willink will usually read and analyze every sentence of the manual from start to finish, sometimes dedicating up to 8 hours (throughout multiple episodes) on one passage.
You might be wondering what all this military stuff has to do with being productive. Actually, a lot more than you think. This show is made for entrepreneurs, business executives, and anyone trying to add order to their lives.
Military strategy has long been incorporated into the world of productivity, and it’s done brilliantly on Jocko Podcast. You’d be hard-pressed to find a leader or diligent worker who hasn’t heard of books like The Art of War (another book covered on the show). Every episode describes invaluable traits that all leaders and productive people should have.
Expertise. That’s the word that can best describe the conversations that Erik Fisher has with his guests on Beyond the To-Do List.
Every episode has a guest, and each one of them is an expert in whatever field of productivity and well-being they’re discussing. Medical doctors, psychologists, and academics at the top of their field are the typical kinds of people you’d find on the show.
Episodes usually average about 45 minutes each, and they’re packed full of fascinating problems and solutions that productive people encounter throughout their day-to-day activities and lives. Rather than only looking at basic productivity stuff (to-do lists, planning, motivation, etc.), the show looks beyond that, and into actual mental health improvement, hence the name.
Some of us can feel burnt out after listening to too many productivity podcasts, especially when modern work culture has us constantly feeling like we need to get more done.
Fisher sees this problem, and his show addresses it well. Beyond the To-Do List doesn’t have episodes on “getting more done”. It has episodes on getting good sleep, the power of having fun, and growing happiness.
A truly productive person is one whose life is full of quality mental/physical health, mindfulness, and joy. Why? You can’t maximize your productivity without putting yourself first. This podcast operates with that fact as a guiding principle, and knows how to blend mindset shifts with concrete, step-by-step instructions.
We’re all suckers for podcasts that have great chemistry between the hosts. It’s the reason why shows like Stuff You Should Know are so huge. If friendly banter and relaxed attitudes are an important part of your podcast experience, Focus On This will be right up your alley.
Hosted by three friends (Blake, Courtney, and Verbs), this laid-back show is all about discussing typical productivity topics in a business-casual sort of way. Episodes are typically around 30 minutes and include a lot of silly dialogue and casual conversation.
If you’re looking for something a bit less organized in structure, you’ll enjoy Focus On This. Don’t get it confused though: the productivity methods taught in this show are anything but disorganized. It’s all based around the “Full Focus” method, which prioritizes focus on:
- 1 annual goal.
- 3 weekly goals.
- 3 daily goals.
The whole idea of Focus On This is to build productive habits in a fun, proactive way. The motto of the show is “Start loving Mondays!” and typical episodes include topics like procrastination, building momentum, and mastering the “Full Focus” method.
Overall, the podcast is highly successful in teaching productivity in a way that builds on gratitude and celebration while avoiding extreme work ethic.
Are you looking for bite-sized chunks of amazing productivity advice? The Mindset Mentor is the podcast for you! The host, Rob Dial, is a major social media influencer with over 3 million Instagram followers. But he has more than just street cred, studying with figures such as Jay Shetty, Tony Robbins, and Ram Dass over the past 2 decades.
It’s not hard to see how Dial has become so popular on social media. He has a unique sense of charisma that makes him seem so down-to-earth and relatable, especially for someone who has worked with so many legends in his career.
Much of the show’s fan base consists of business owners and productivity enthusiasts alike, which explains why The Mindset Mentor is one of the most downloaded and respected podcasts on this list. Dial explains human psychology in a way that’s relevant and easy to understand, with a simplicity that appeals to millions.
Another huge selling point for the show is the length of each episode. With an average runtime of less than 20 minutes, it’s easy to digest without taking in an overwhelming amount of information. This short time frame also makes the main message of each episode more powerful. Some recent topics include “The Secret to Self Love”, “3 Steps to Break Through Mental Barriers”, and “Comparing Yourself is Killing Your Joy.”
This show is highly beneficial for people who don’t have time to sit through hour-long episodes, or anyone who simply wants only the most meaningful, motivating content.
In Conclusion: Finding a Podcast for Productivity
The above list showcases a variety of amazing podcasts to jumpstart your productivity in 2023. Whether you’re looking to study the productivity habits of great historical leaders or simply get some quick advice from an easy-going group of friends, this list has something for everyone.
Above all, we recommend mixing and matching podcasts to see which one fits best for you! We all absorb information differently, and each show on this list presents different strategies in different formats. We hope this article can serve as a starting point in your search for the best productivity podcasts. Good luck!