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How mental health podcasts can help you feel less lonely

With podcasts becoming a popular form of media, we list twelve of our experts' favourite ones

Podcasts can feel truer to the experience of being heard because it uses listening, a core idea of therapy
Podcasts can feel truer to the experience of being heard because it uses listening, a core idea of therapy (Andrea Piacquadio (Pexels))

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Podcasts give us a sense of being a part of a community. It helps to listen to someone else's story about themselves, creating a feeling that you aren't alone. Also, podcasts can feel truer to the experience of being heard because it uses listening, a core idea of therapy.

Also read: How to ensure that you stick to your new year's health resolutions this year

Experts list out their personal favourite podcasts which one can follow for knowing more about psychology and mental health.

Divija Bhasin, Counselling Psychologist, New Delhi

Divija Bhasin
Divija Bhasin

Respectfully Disagree

I came across this podcast a few months ago, one of the first few podcasts I heard. This podcast offers conversations about society and culture, which directly impact mental health, including taboo topics which definitely need more attention. I like how it is fun to listen to - not very preachy and gets you to think about your perspective and maybe even change it sometimes.

Therapy In A Nutshell

 It is a self-help podcast created by a certified psychologist who gives advice based on evidence-based techniques. I like that it offers tips that many therapists would also give in therapy, unlike other self-help books/podcasts, which may be just the opinions of people who aren't psychologists. I am usually not in favour of self-help related media because I find that it can cause more harm than good. Everyone is different, and what works for you may not work for others. But this podcast seems to give advice that we all can use in our day to day life. I think it's helpful considering not many people have access to therapy in our country. Something is better than nothing.

The Overthink Tank

I like how this podcast talks of different life experiences and how they impacted the speakers. It talks of mental health in a straightforward and relatable manner. It's lighthearted, and even though the topics are "heavy", it is spoken about in a fun way. It's also interesting to see the guests-- usually popular creators, comedians etc.--talk about things we all go through in life. 

Samriti Makkar Midha, Clinical Psychologist, Mumbai

Samriti Makkar Midha
Samriti Makkar Midha

The Happiness Lab with Dr Laurie Santos

Dr Laurie Santos is a Yale professor who has studied the science of happiness. The podcast delves into many emotions and how we navigate and process them. Their perspective towards feelings resonates with me. As a therapist, I focus on recognizing and acknowledging emotions as they are messengers telling us what we are feeling. Identifying the right emotion is a step towards effectively dealing with the situation by embracing what is going well and what is not.

Narrative Therapy: An Animated Conversation by Kat Morse

This podcast takes you on a path of self-reflection and deepening psychosocial understanding of how we view ourselves, our relationships and the decisions we make. This is done interestingly-- through conversations around children's animated movies. I found this podcast very engaging because I trained in narrative therapy. The podcast helps to talk about complex, nuanced, and sometimes overwhelming concepts in an easy and relatable way.

Also read: Five teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh that will always stay relevant

What's A Man by Deepa Narayan

As the podcast's page states, "The goal of this 10-episode podcast series is to open up public and compassionate conversations about what it means to be a man in India today. Based on 200 in-depth interviews with middle and upper-class boys and men, including those across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum, the series explores men's experiences in homes, schools, and offices in the exercise of power and practice of love." The podcast invites conversations around men and the pressures they experience in our culture. We can't talk about gender inequalities and end violence against women until we address stereotypes and prejudices faced by all of us due to the gender we identify with and what it means to be of that gender in our society.

Dr Fabian Almeida, Consultant Psychiatrist, Fortis Hospital, Mumbai

Dr Fabian Almeida
Dr Fabian Almeida

Gopal Gaur Das

I like this podcast because Gaur, a former engineer turned motivational speaker and lifestyle coach, offers simplicity and relevant slice-of-life wisdom without being spiritually overbearing. I relate to his contemporary examples from our everyday lives that delve into life's simple truths, which we often take for granted. 

Huberman Lab

Dr Andrew Huberman is a professor of neurobiology and ophthalmology at the Stanford School of Medicine. He gives us the science and science-related tools for essential aspects of everyday life in these podcasts. The best part is that, rather than shifting from one topic to another, these podcasts stay focussed on a particular topic for a whole month. This really helps clarify concepts and put into practice all that has been recommended.

Psychology Unplugged

 Dr Corey J. Nigro picks up relevant topics from mental health and demystifies the information around it, helping to work towards a better, balanced view of psycho-education. In this COVID19 scenario, when mental health issues have risen exponentially, this surely is the need of the hour. 

Also read: Do we really need 10,000 steps a day?

Dr Aleeka Kumar, Clinical Psychologist, Mumbai

Aleeka Kumar
Aleeka Kumar

Duff the Psych

This podcast comes close to simplifying and addressing the problems at hand. It often points you in the right direction and corrects some notions you could be falsely applying to what you are going through.


 It does not have a direct correlation with mental health. But it does address simpler states of loneliness and stress.

Tim Ferris

 I found his podcast on learning to swim better quite helpful. However, I think a more realistic appeal of a podcast lies in either being able to help you to explore specific areas better, such as sports, travel, or just stories.

Also read: How to stay resilient through the third wave



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