The podcast is a relatively new phenomenon that allows us to digest information while on the move. Whether related to music, sports, lifestyle, and the like, we just plug-in, switch on and get going. However, the podcast space has become somewhat saturated in recent years, and finding audio gold is akin to discovering a needle in the proverbial haystack. However when you do, there are some inspirational and educational podcasts cultivated by individuals encouraging you to step out of comfort, push the boundaries and empower your inner selves. Want to know three podcasts that fit this mould? Of course you do.
Be a ‘man’. ‘Man’ up. If you’re a ‘man’, you would do X Y and Z. I’m sure I can speak for most, if not all men in that we’ve heard these statements at some point in our lives. I know I definitely have. These beliefs surrounding how to act as a man have been indoctrinated into the fabric of society for as long as can be remembered, and ultimately can manifest themselves in our actions and thoughts. Again, I can attest to this from personal experience. It’s the illusion of masculinity, and we’ve always believed it applied in society to fit the natural order. But it has to stop, for the sake of the men and women whom this problem afflicts, and in order for society to move forward - away from prehistoric notions of superiority.
Professional sport. A dominator of media outlets. A magnet attracting thousands of fans who flock to mass events on any given weekend. A creator of bonds between like-minded fans; a cultivator of rivalries against the opposition. A generator of those longing feelings of involvement, validation and belonging. The athletes who grace the sporting arenas are often put on pedestals, and subsequently praised and revered for their athletic capabilities – and in most cases, rightly so. Some of the best athletes in history have captured the imagination of many with their ability, skill, winning mentality and desire to compete successfully in their respective fields. Fueled by passion and professional pride, athletes use the stage they are on to exhibit their talents and realise years of hard work. But the world of sport in recent years has taken a sharp turn away from the integrity and passion of honest sporting competition, towards the economically-driven world of corporate commercialism. Ownership of large sports franchises, eye-watering sums of money generated from television rights and merchandising, corporate sponsorship and athlete management have all contributed to the monster that is the commercial side of sport - more money than ever is changing hands across all forms of professional sporting competition. This level of corporate and commercial influence has changed sport forever, and it begs the question; is professional sport now purely an entertainment industry? Or does it remain a realm where the main focus is on the integrity and professionalism of athletic competition on the biggest stage?
I didn’t think I’d ever partake in the process of writing a blog post in a month of Sundays. I didn’t ever think I’d ever make the gargantuan shift—after 29 years of eating an animal-based diet—towards a plant-based, vegan lifestyle. But 2017 was a year where for me—and no doubt many others on this path—there was a shift in mind, body and soul. So let me try —try being the operative word here—to extol the virtues of this now-mainstream state of being; a way of living that, once an open mind and a glance towards the bigger picture are focused on, will actually leave you thinking "you know what, I sort-of understand it."