Tibetan artists in Norbulingka Institute, Dharamshala, India
Tibetan artists in Norbulingka Institute, Dharamshala, India

Driving in India is a test of patience. And a waste of time.

A few months ago, I decided to try an experiment while driving to office, about a 30 minute ride each way. The experiment was: Podcasts.

Turns out, I had uncovered something amazing. Podcasts made me forget the time I spend on the road, and instead opened a window to a world I didn’t know existed. I now found an opportunity to hear interviews and stories, of lives of people, in far away places. People, whose stories, I would otherwise never have heard.

Here is a list of podcasts I really enjoyed, or were super thought-provoking. If you like these, please bookmark this post. I will constantly update this as I come across more interesting podcasts.

List of Podcasts

  1. [Tim Ferriss Interview] Pavel Tsatsouline on the Science of Strength and the Art of Physical Performance: Fundamentals of Strength training, kettle bell, no-nonsense, fitness, and many things under the world.
  2. [Tim Ferriss Interview] General Stan McChrystal on Eating One Meal Per Day, Leadership in the Military, Special Ops, and Mental Toughness: An interesting interview on Leadership challenges in the military and what can we learn from them, for navigating the civilian world.
  3. [Tim Ferriss Interview] The Scariest Navy SEAL Imaginable…And What He Taught Me: An interview with Jocko Willink about training for jiu-jitsu, managing fear, leadership in SEAL teams, fitness and discipline.
  4. [NPR TED Talk] Courage: Understanding courage in people – talks by some remarkable people, with remarkable achievements.
  5. [NPR TED Talk] Keeping Secrets: Secrets in the world.
  6. [NPR TED Talk] Quiet: A Man who did not speak for 17 years. And the importance of Quiet.
  7. [NPR TED Talk] Unstoppable Learning: A fantastic experiment on how children can learn without any teachers.
  8. [Stuff You Should Know] How the Berlin Wall Worked: The amazing history of the wall that divided East and West Germany for 28 years.
  9. [Stuff You Should Know] How Black Boxes Work: An understanding of black boxes on the planes, and their history. Very fascinating.
  10. [Stuff You Should Know] Does Owning a Gun Change your Behavior: Gun Control, and the psychological impact of owning a gun. It isn’t what you think it is.
  11. [Stuff You Should Know] How Bitcoin Works: An explanation of Bitcoin.
  12. [Stuff You Should Know] Can you test a Nuclear Weapon without a Fallout?: A history of the various nuclear weapon tests conducted on Planet Earth, and their repercussions.
  13. [NPR Hidden Brain] Tribes & Traitors: What Happens When You Empathize with the Enemy?: The more trauma an individual or a group has experienced, the harder it can be to acknowledge the suffering of the other side. A look into the life of a former Israeli paratrooper and a Palestinanian professor who empathized with the other side.
  14. [NPR Hidden Brain] In Praise of Mess: Why Disorder May Be Good For Us: In this episode of Hidden Brain, economist and writer Tim Harford talks about how an embrace of chaos is beneficial to musicians, speechmakers, politicians – and the rest of us.
  15. [Farnam Street] Interview with Naval Ravikant: Words of wisdom on life, decision making, the importance of reading, meditation and a lot of other topics. This is one of the best podcasts I have heard. You can also read the audio transcript here.
  16. [Farnam Street] Trust Battery - Interview with found of Shopify: In this podcast, Shane Parrish interviews the founder and CEO of Shopify, Tobi Lütke. Tobi’s insights on topics such as excellence, diversity, culture, building long lasting companies, talent attraction, etc. are truly thought-provoking! The audio transcript is here.
  17. The Seen and Unseen - A podcast series on Indian Politics, Economics and Public Policy hosted by Amit Varma, provides an in-depth analysis on various topics relevant to Indians today. Some notable episodes that I really liked:
  18. [Tim Ferriss Interview] Jim Collins — A Rare Interview with a Reclusive Polymath: Jim & Tim discuss a LOT of topics, including how does Jim plan his day, how he keeps his creative impact high, his daily diary, book writing (Good to Great, Build to Last, etc), importance of quality sleep, Jim’s learings from Peter Drucker and much more!

I usually listen to podcasts on the Apple Podcast App, but you should be able to find these podcasts on any podcast app like Stitcher, Spotify, YouTube, etc.

Expertease Podcast

I have recorded a few podcasts for the Indian technical audience, called Expertease, where I talk to accomplished friends & colleagues on all things technology. Check it out here: Expertease Podcast.

[This blog was last updated on 27-May-2021]