These are the best podcasts and audiobooks I’ve found for top performance, emerging technology, and business trends from listening to hundreds of podcasts and a couple of years worth of audiobooks.
Best Podcasts for Top Performance
1. Anatomy of Next
One of the things I love about online content at the moment is greater access to the ‘good news stories’. The Anatomy of Next is a treat. It showcases current, upcoming and longer-term technology and the effects on humanity through storyline and interviews with world experts in genetics, tech, and beyond. What’s rad about it is that it’s dispelling many of the dystopian/destruction future storylines often in Hollywood blockbuster movies (think: Terminator). It’s useful in seeing the future brightly.
2. Blockchain tech and digital tokens
Check out the favourite podcasts and audiobooks here.
3. Kevin Kelly
IDEO Futures and Kevin Kelly creatively explore the future (Soundcloud and iTunes Episode 37). Fascinating.
4. James Altucher Interviews
A wonderful conversation between James and Gary Vaynerchuk on the realities of working hard and becoming an entrepreneur, hustling and gaining freedom in life.
Adam Grant and James will help your creativity and original thinking.
5. Tim Ferriss Interviews
Tim Ferriss podcasts are interviews with people who are operating at best-in-the-world level. Learn from the best! Enjoy their wise and calm perspectives. Tim is the author of the ‘Four Hour’ books that are really useful for developing your mindset to identify greater productivity, performance and to be globally-aware. Access podcasts through searching for Tim Ferriss in the Podcasts app on your smartphone or head here. These are my favourite interviews with top performers across various professions in suggested listening order:
Kevin Kelly (#164) – AI, Virtual Reality and The Inevitable
Joshua Waitzkin (all episodes)
Maria Popova (especially useful if you do Social Media production)
Marc Andreessen (#163)
If you’re interested in productivity and gaining increased focus, Tim Ferriss also provides insight beyond his book (which is a great introduction) through these podcasts where he shares his personal experiments and what has worked:
Episode 13: “Productivity” Tricks for the Neurotic, Manic-Depressive, and Crazy (Like Me)
Magic of Mindfulness: Complain Less, Appreciate More, and Live a Better Life
Episode 6: 6 Formulas for More Output and Less Overwhelm
Episode 9:The 9 Habits to Stop Now – the Not-To-Do List
Episode 17: The Power of Negative Visualization
Lazy: A Manifesto
How to Earn Your Freedom
How to Practice Poverty and Reduce Fear
How to 10X Your Results, One Tiny Tweak at a Time
How to Avoid the Busy Trap (And Other Misuses of Your Time)
6. Arianna Huffington
Get up to speed on why 8 hour sleep a day helps productivity.
7. Voices of VR
“VR” stands for Virtual Reality = Next big thing. Get on it: the Voices of VR podcast 🙂
8. The Future of the Internet
This Freakonomics podcast investigates “Is the Internet Being Ruined”. Interesting analysis of the big players such as Facebook and aspects of privacy, as well as potential solutions. Well worth a listen.
9. No Such Thing as a Fish
“The QI researchers (known as ‘elves’) host a weekly podcast to half a million subscribers, where they discuss the most interesting facts they’ve unearthed that week.”
Fascinating, witty and good fun. Really diverse topics, you’re sure to learn something new. This episode (iTunes Ep 127 here) covers objects left on the moon, the earthquake-proof bed, men-only flights and comic sans font.
10. Elizabeth Gilbert Interviews
Feeling a creative block? Check in to the great insights in Episode 207 of Elizabeth Gilbert’s Magic Lessons.
11. Stacking the Bricks
Amy Hoy and Alex Hillman help creatives, consultants, small business owners, entrepreneurs and freelancers grow their online presence, business and set up their online marketing systems to attract relevant leads by first finding a niche group of customers and deeply researching and analysing their needs.
Their Year of Hustle roadmap explains their system. Enjoy their podcasts – my favourites are:
1 – How Pat Maddox went from 0 subscribers to over $3k MRR in 10 days
EP12 – “I’m shipping ebombs, now what?” – From Pain to Product with Nick Piegari
EP13 – Justin Weiss’s shift from side projects to successful product launches
EP18 – Our Profitable Mess (and how we’re cleaning it up)
EP19 – A Swift Kick in the Ass (The Game of Business)
EP20 – A Swift Kick in the Ass (Accountability)
EP 22 – How to make an offer they can’t refuse (Outreach Masterclass with Kai Davis)
Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success by Cal Newport. Develop this marketable skill, it’ll be worth it. Exceptional book with practical tips that repeatedly (and usefully) popped into my head weeks after reading. Unique.
Cal’s “Be So Good they Can’t Ignore You” is fabulous too. “He debunks the passion hypothesis (that you need to follow your passions to find work you love) and courage culture (that you need to be emotionally brave too) and instead highlights people who have developed their experience and skills (career capital) prior to using it for greater autonomy, income, flexibility and more.” Although the audiobook is repetitive, its concise length and clearly presented arguments make it well worth the listen.
“The Art of Learning: An Inner Journey to Optimal Performance” by master Josh Waitzkin is a peaceful, kind offering of clever learning and high performance tools, including insightful stories from Josh’s life in uncovering top human performance. Enjoy this one.
Kevin Kelly’s “The Inevitable” – within 6 hours of listening you’ll be up to date with the 12 tech forces that are shaping our future. I found listening to this at 1.25 speed worked well and the 6 hours took me about 3 week in amongst listening to other media.
“Ready Player One” immerses you in a VR future – great for strategists and future thinkers to better imagine aspects of what could come to be. Have a bit of fun!
The Industries of the Future by Alec Ross. Fascinating.
Care about your company’s culture and doing things differently (exceptionally)? Get into “Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman – Including 10 More Years of Business Unusual” by legendary Yvon Chouinard & Naomi Klein.
The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer. Entertaining, wise and insightful.
Radical Candor: Be A Kick-Ass Boss Without Using Your Humanity has great leadership tips for building exceptional teams as does “Extreme Teams: Why Pixar, Netflix, AirBnB, and Other Cutting-Edge Companies Succeed Where Most Fail” by Robert Bruce Shaw.
Ryan Holiday’s “Ego is the Enemy” is exactly what you’d hope for.
Love yourself like your life depends on it by Kamal Ravikant (Kamal’s brother Naval mentioned above) is soothing (well done Kamal!) and basic and strengthening. Kamal and Naval are successful entrepreneurs and Silicon Valley’s investors.
Grit by Angela Duckworth hones in on attributes and activities that can build perseverance.
Pop over here for favourite blockchain and cryptocurrency audiobooks.
I download a few at a time to my iPhone so I can listen whether or not I’m connected to the internet.
Oh! And I’m a fan of Jaybird headphones and Apple Airpods so learning can happen quickly, anywhere. Clever earphones have had me learning many more hours a week for a while now.
Have a favourite? Let us know so this list continues to be alive with useful tips.
Check in here regularly as I update this list.
Happy learning and doing!
Last update – 29 January, 2018.
Original post – May, 2016.