How Podcasts Have Helped Me Heal
I’m a podcast fanatic. My morning routine isn’t complete without a good podcast keeping me company. I can’t even remember how I first came to listen to podcasts, or how I even discovered they were a thing. All I know is, once I did – I never went podcast-less again, and they were a significant part of my healing journey with endometriosis.
When I stumbled upon the podcast world, I had severe fatigue, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and was suffering from isolation, as I couldn’t keep up with my social life. Podcasts addressed every issue I was dealing with in really real and honest ways, and so I thought I’d share how in case they can help you too...
The type of endometriosis management journey that I’ve gone on isn’t really one that your average consultant or GP suggests or has too much knowledge about. Therefore, I’ve had to source my information from books, studies, and experts. Whilst there are podcasts about endometriosis, I really enjoyed listening to health-related podcasts that weren’t directly to do with endometriosis. It’s nice to have a break from the endo talk, and also, there’s so much you can glean from stories that aren’t exactly the same as yours.
Rich Roll’s podcast is incredible, not only because of his wealth of awesome guests, but his own inspirational story from alcoholic to athlete, which inspired me to create a stronger, fitter home in the body I live in – even with my condition.
Jessica Murnane’s One Part Podcast features guests from all over, but leans more towards health and wellness. I’ve learnt so much about specific foods, food groups, lifestyle choices, etc. that can help me work with my health (especially energy/fatigue) to feel better overall. It also helps that she’s a fellow endowarrior!
This might be sad to admit, but listening to people having a real, unscripted conversation, can help hugely when you’re feeling lonely or isolated. It allows you to join in on something without physically partaking, and it’s of course comforting to hear a human voice.
I found that the podcasts which helped me feel less alone were the podcasts that dealt with issues of humanity; loneliness, hardship, resentment, depression, joy, love, happiness – the whole spectrum. These conversations not only directly addressed some of the problems I was dealing with, but also took me out of my own head space to see life from a different perspective.
The Rob Cast is a spiritual podcast exploring what it means to be human, and his episodes have helped me create a life that’s more fulfilling and connected. Another great podcast is Harry Potter and the Sacred Text, a podcast where the hosts read Harry Potter as if it was a holy book and study it for the life lessons it can bring us. Both podcasts are full of joy, laughter and incredible insight, and never fail to make me smile and feel good.
Other podcasts that can help with isolation are comedy podcasts or chat shows like The Guilty Feminist, and narrated serials like Serial and Black Tapes.
It might sound far-fetched to say a recorded show, by someone you don’t know, by someone who doesn’t even know what you’re going through, can help with mental health. But an improvement in my mental health has been the biggest benefit I’ve experienced from becoming a podcast addict.
The reason being is because famous or not, the hosts and guests of these podcasts are real people, and there’s something about podcasting that really encourages people to open up. You get real life stories, real vulnerabilities, real reflection. Listening to how someone else coped with depression, or how your role model was on the verge of packing it all in due to anxiety, not only helps you feel less alone, but it gives you hope that you can make it through to the other side too.
I always found that the podcasts I listened to offered genuine and practical advice; sure a lot of the shows are conversational and chatty, but at the end most will round up with some tips for the listeners to take away.
Jessica Murnane covers depression, anxiety and mental health quite often in One Part Podcast whilst Rob Bell really gets into the deep soul-searching questions that can haunt you when you’re in the grips of depression and despair. I also really like Radio Headspace, the Headspace app’s podcast, deep diving into mindfulness and being more present in our lives. I don’t think it’s running anymore, but you can explore previous episodes in the site’s archives.
People with endometriosis may also have bladder issues. Have you experienced overactive bladder (urinary frequency or urgency)?
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