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Friday non-food treat: September4 minute read

Food should be enjoyable—but it shouldn’t be your greatest source of joy. Each month I focus on a non-food treat that’s boosting my happiness, in the hope that you’ll find some pleasure in it too!


I’m pretty sure the whole world got into podcasts years ago, but for me they’re a fairly recent revelation. I think they’re a wonderful expression of creativity, for two main reasons:

1) They hark back to the satisfying simplicity of radio. Forget the visual assault of television, gaming or internet surfing—podcasts live or die by the quality of the conversation.

2) They are hugely validating. No matter how esoteric your interest, it’s likely someone has done a podcast on it.

What’s more, they’re easy to fit into your day. They make a commute far more stimulating, and wandering round the supermarket aisles becomes engaging. The other day, with the prospect of plugging into a podcast, I even found myself looking forward to vacuuming the house.

I also think there’s something to be said for the way we listen to podcasts. With radio, the source of the sound is generally separate to you. When you listen to a podcast, the headphones tend to be your ears—so it’s almost as if someone is having a conversation directly in your head. There’s something about the intimacy of this way of listening that makes the words all the more affecting.

This rang especially true for me this week. I was listening to ‘Conversations of Inspiration’, a new podcast by Not on the High Street founder Holly Tucker. In this episode, she was speaking to the founder of the The Cambridge Satchel Company, Julie Deane.

Julie recounted her wobbly road to success, and spoke with refreshing honesty about the trials of setting up and running a (wildly successful) business. At one point, she recalled the moment she realised she’d have to open up a new factory so she could complete a backlog of 16,000 orders.

She’d never opened a factory before. She had no idea she was doing. However, she set herself the task of looking at five factories the following day, and told herself that by 5pm, she would have decided on one. She also had to fit all this in around the school run.

Within three weeks, she had a new factory up and running.

She also created her own logo using Word Art. Oh, and taught herself to code her own website. She achieved the primary goal of her business—making enough money to send her children to a good school—within three months.

When referring to these monumental achievements, she laughed and said, ‘Don’t wally about.’

It was an arresting moment—and I’d recommend listening to the podcast to get the full effect. How simple, and yet how profound.

How many of us wait until the perfect time to do anything? How easy is it to talk yourself out of taking action? How tempting is it to put something off until you’d feel better equipped to deal with it?

It always feels easier to maintain the status quo. I think that’s relevant whether you’re setting up a business, overcoming a personal challenge or simply trying to change your dietary habits.

I’ve found myself repeating, ‘Don’t wally about’, at various moments since, and it’s galvanising. I think having Julie Deane’s jovial voice in my head made it feel as though she were talking directly to me—and that’s the beauty of podcasts.

Of course, not every podcast creates such thought-provoking moments, not least because different things resonate with different people. I do feel that you gain something from every podcast you listen to, though. Whether you’re seeking laughter, knowledge or self-insight, it’s worth giving them a go.

For those that are interested, here are some of my favourites (many of which are, predictably, health-focused!):

– The Alex Manos Podcast

– Conversations of Inspiration

– The School of Greatness

– The Doctor’s Farmacy

– Where Shall We Begin?

– Deliciously Ella: The Podcast

– Dr Ruscio Radio

– Positive Health Podcast

– The Emma Guns Show

– Feel Better, Live More

– New Frontiers in Functional Medicine

– Desert Island Dishes

Happy listening, all!

For personalised support, please feel free to get in touch.

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