2018’s Wisdom for Your Ears

In 2018 I’ve listened to an insane amount of podcast episodes.

Listening to podcasts almost replaced listening to music for me. I have a really small selection, but among them is the Jocko Podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, Jordan B. Petersons’s Podcast, and The Ground Up Show.

If you also like podcasts and are increasingly overwhelmed by the sheer amount of content available, here is a small curation of three podcast episodes I highly recommend.

1. Jocko Podcast #98
with Jordan B. Peterson

If you listen to one podcast episode this year, this is the one.

This episode provides a great introduction to psychologist Dr. Jordan B. Peterson, his views, ideas. It’s full of wisdom and knowledge to be absorbed while listening. I’ve found myself pausing and note-taking multiple times.

While you get your fair share on the importance of discipline and responsibility from both of them – which is hardly surprising considering both wrote books about those topics – it doesn’t stop there. You’ll get an understanding of why having a goal in life is so important, to experience meaning, and how to plan your future one step at a time. You’ll also get a glimpse of Peterson’s youth and all kinds of well-told examples of courageous people. There’s also not a lot of politics in this one, which you may or may not like as much.

It’s by far the best episode I’ve listened to in 2018 and literally the last one I’ve listened to (finishing it as late as 31.12.2018, ha!).

2. Jocko Podcast #60
The Rape of Nanking

This was by far the most horrifying and brutal podcast episode I’ve listened to in 2018. I had to pause a few times because I just couldn’t keep on listening to the horrors committed between December of 1937 and early 1938 in Nanking. In this episode, you’ll dive deeply into the terrible war crimes committed by Japanese soldiers during the second Japan-Chinese War in the late 1930s. At some points, the brutality and plain evil seemed incomprehensible – and as a student of history specialized in researching the Third Reich and the Second World War, I’ve read and seen my fair share of evil.

So, why am I urging you to listen to this whole episode?

Because there is no way you’re not grateful for the comfort of your home, the warmth of your bed, and the stability that we have in our western societies after being exposed to that darkness. Seeing the darkness, the evil, and the suffering that is part of our history and is still going on in other parts of the world, makes the light that we can experience in our day-to-day pursuits shine a lot brighter. Exposing myself to Darkness on a regular basis has also killed complaining for me. It seems completely ridiculous after realizing how blessed we are in western societies.

If you find it repulsive to listen to such an episode, then there is all the more reason that you really should. I used to close my eyes to the details of evil, horror, and darkness in the world. It used to be something that’s “out there” but it was never real for me. Listening to this episode and the one about the book “Machete Season” (About the Rwanda Genocide) really opened my eyes and allowed me to be grateful, for the simple things every day in my life: running water, a warm bed, a place to sleep, but also the big things like peace, prosperity, and education.

Darkness reveals the light.

3. The Ground Up Show #73
T.K. Coleman

Probably not many of you have heard about “The Ground Up Show”. It’s a relatively new podcast from the documentary filmmaker Matt D’Avella who shot the documentary “Minimalism” from The Minimalists.

T.K. Coleman was on this episode of the podcast and it’s a relatively short episode filled with little nuggets of wisdom and actionable advice. While the general theme of the podcast is creating something from the ground up, they go a lot further in this one. They talk about how to go about creating something while still learning, documenting the process, content creation, and purpose. How to find your purpose, how to sustain it, and why tracking your progress is really useful with most things you want to achieve. If you’re a content creator, it’s a must-watch but it’s also great for anyone that thinks about starting something new or simply wants to learn from this episode. Also, it’s a must-watch if you think about going to college in the US (they discuss the cons in great detail).

“Dreams don’t come true, decisions do” is a great title and it basically summarizes the advice given in this podcast. There’s something actionable in there for everyone, so you should definitely have a look.

Now it’s your turn! Which podcast episode (or podcast) do you recommend? I’m constantly looking for more podcasts that add value to my life and many others do, too!