8 Podcasts to Make the Most of Your Morning Commute

Life-changing listens that will make the time from your home to the office more productive and enjoyable.

Whether your a city-dweller or a suburbanite—your commute to work can sometimes feel like a job in and of itself. Those minutes (and sometimes hours) that tick away between leaving for work and arriving in the office not only feels like wasted time, it can have a major impact on both your mental and physical health.

But what if you could use your commute as an opportunity to learn something new, get inspired for the day ahead, or even get lost in a gut-wrenching real-life murder mystery?

Once again, the all-encompassing world of podcasts can help you do just that. No matter your interests, there’s a podcast to help you pass your commute time with ease.

Pack your charger—your phone’s going to be working overtime with these eight podcasts that will make you wish your commute was longer:

10% Happier with Dan Harris

Can you be ambitious and still strive for enlightenment? This is the question Dan Harris—ABC news anchor and author of 10% Happier seeks to unravel in his weekly podcast. After having a panic attack on live television, Harris dubiously turned to meditation as a possible solution for making his life the slightest bit, well, happier. The rest is history. Now, Harris interviews everyone from the Dalai Lama to Arianna Huffington, attempting to understand how we can balance our success with the ultimate goal of our meditation practice.

Listen to Chef Mario Batali’s take on why meditation is an essential aspect of his morning routine:

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Serial

If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet—and you’re addicted to Dateline, 48 Hours, or just the ID channel in general—this is the podcast for you. One chilling murder investigation is broken up into a season of real life red herons and shocking turns. By the end, you’ll be feverishly downloading the second season, while still in total shock over the finale of season one.

Here’s a sneak peak into the first season of this series. Start listening now:

“It’s Baltimore, 1999. Hae Min Lee, a popular high-school senior, disappears after school one day. Six weeks later detectives arrest her classmate and ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. He says he’s innocent – though he can’t exactly remember what he was doing on that January afternoon. But someone can. A classmate at Woodlawn High School says she knows where Adnan was. The trouble is, she’s nowhere to be found.”

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Modern Love

A complete 180 in subject matter from the previous podcast, this NPR favorite will have you, “fall in love at first listen.” Based off the popular New York Times column sharing the same name, each episode includes a reading from a notable essayist or personality that explores the parameters of love.

Pass your next train ride with Katie Couric’s reading of Leslie Lehr‘s Modern Love essay:

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Revisionist History

I think we’re all more or less aware that our perception of history can’t be 100 percent accurate. That’s why Malcolm Gladwell, author of Outliers and What the Dog Sawset out to record this podcast as a means of re-considering historical givens—”because sometimes the past deserves a second chance.” Subscribe to this podcast for a raw survey of history that will keep you up at night, wondering if you know the whole story about the things you accept as fact.

Here’s an episode about how nominating the outsider can actually perpetuate discrimination against them:

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#GIRLBOSS Radio

Don’t let the title fool you, this podcast is must-listen for anyone on the entrepreneurial path, male or female (okay, especially women though). Sophia Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal and author of #Girlboss, rounds up the most badass women entrepreneurs and asks them your most burning questions. What was your first job ever? How did your company raise? Whether you’re working on a company of your own, or climbing the corporate ladder, Amoruso’s podcast is here to help you re-vamp your hustle.

Check out this invigorating episode featuring Miki Agrawal, founder of THINX underwear:

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Stuff You Should Know

How does the moonwalk work? Who gets to name continents? We know these question have been keeping you up at night, but never fear, they’re all about to get answered. These tidbits are perfect for when you’ve hit an awkward silence during conversation, or just to make yourself sound like a fun fact connoisseur. Prepare to be the most impressive person in the room.

You should definitely NOT tune into this podcast to become an expert on reverse psychology:

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TED Radio Hour

Bringing the much beloved TED Talks to strictly audio, this podcast provides all the brilliant ideas you need to start your day off right. In their own words:

“The TED Radio Hour is a journey through fascinating ideas: astonishing inventions, fresh approaches to old problems, new ways to think and create. Based on Talks given by riveting speakers on the world-renowned TED stage, each show is centered on a common theme – such as the source of happiness, crowd-sourcing innovation, power shifts, or inexplicable connections”

What does it mean to find wisdom at every stage in your life? The great minds behind TED have your answers:

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Happier Podcast

Boost your everyday activities with hacks to make your life just a little bit happier. Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, unravels your routines to discover what you could be doing to add a little sunshine to everything from designing your summer, to how to avoid becoming a hoarder. Her advice seems so simple, yet so profound, that you’ll be left scratching your head, and wondering why you didn’t implement these changes earlier.

Listen to this episode about how instituting outer order can help you cultivate inner calm:

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