People talk to themselves -- a lot. With studies showing that our internal dialogue clips along at a pace of 4,000 words per minute, we cram a lot of thoughts into our day. And the person listening on the other end is us.
That would be great if those 4,000 words were full of self-affirmation and motivating talk, but they're not: Up to 70 percent of our "mental chatter" is negative. Because we believe our self-talk, that negativity can overwhelm our positive, energizing thoughts and put a damper on our motivation.
That's why getting others' voices into our heads can sometimes be a very good thing. By absorbing others' encouraging words and exposing ourselves to different ideas, we can put ourselves in a much more positive headspace. Here are five podcasts whose hosts will help you do just that.
1. "Happier Podcast" with Gretchen Rubin
Gretchen Rubin, the author of "The Happiness Project" and several other books on seeking happiness and improving oneself, hosts "Happier." Founded on the idea that life is a project in which we are all experimenting to find what makes us most fulfilled, Rubin and her co-host, Elizabeth Craft, discuss habits and triggers to help adopt new perspectives. The podcast has covered a range of topics, including how to quit an addictive app, why examples carry more power than good advice, and how our happiness intersects with others'.
2. "The Stay Grounded Podcast" with Raj Jana
Raj Jana, the Chief Brewing Officer at JavaPresse Coffee Company, runs the "Stay Grounded" podcast. JavaPresse's mission is to transform ordinary coffee rituals into extraordinary daily experiences, ensuring they offer a moment for people to pause, center themselves, and fuel the rest of their day, and Jana's podcast follows the same theme. He invites people from a variety of backgrounds to ruminate on happiness, success, and how our daily rituals and routines can tie into creating both. His episodes run the gamut, featuring reflections inspired by entrepreneurs like Daymond John from "Shark Tank" and focusing on topics as diverse as putting yourself first and using fear to fuel happiness.
3. "The Lively Show" with Jess Lively
Jess Lively, a business coach-turned-wellness guru, uses online classes, as well as "The Lively Show," to fulfill her quest of helping others live their dream lives. Based on the belief that listening to our intuition and focusing on our values and intentions can influence what's to come, Lively aims to offer uplifting insights and goal-driven looks into the business world. The show features interviews with guests like Elizabeth Gilbert of "Eat, Pray, Love" fame; in recent episodes, the podcast has covered everything from self-love to cryptocurrency.
4. "Good Life Project Podcast" with Jonathan Fields
Jonathan Fields manages Good Life Project, a mission- and education-based effort that includes classes, summer camps, and the "Good Life Project" podcast. Designed to share ideas about living a "fully engaged, fiercely connected and purpose-drenched life," the podcast pledges to follow a real-world approach that leads to long-lasting change and happiness within the lives listeners have already built. Offering tools and strategies, the podcast interviews well-known names like Seth Godin and Brené Brown and discusses subjects ranging from reclaiming one's identity to learning the art of good conversation.
5. "The School of Greatness Podcast" with Lewis Howes
Lewis Howes, a former professional Arena League football player, is a lifestyle entrepreneur, a current member of the USA men's Olympic handball team, and the host of "The School of Greatness." The podcast aims to inspire listeners by sharing the experiences of leading athletes, business people, and celebrities to underscore "what makes great people great." The show has hosted a variety of guests, including Gary Vaynerchuk, Ray Lewis, and Andy Grammer; it's touched on topics ranging from setting boundaries for healthy relationships to choosing what creates a spark in us.
It's not a bad thing that we talk to ourselves a lot -- but the words we choose to say to ourselves can be defeating. By taking the time to listen to podcasts designed to motivate and invigorate us, we can start filling our heads with more positive phrases. If we push ourselves toward success, not away from failure, we may truly find success -- and that will really give us something to talk about.