Media of all shapes and sizes keeps us going, whether we binge TV shows, follow the Oscar buzz, or read up on classic novels during the cold winter months. Podcasts have become our new staples for news and entertainment as we’re working out, commuting to work, cooking dinner, or trying to fall asleep.
The year ahead won’t disappoint with the number and scope of podcasts available to consume, whether you need some career motivation, are looking for self-care ideas, or want to be transfixed by a true-crime thriller.
Let’s walk through some of the best podcasts to follow in 2024 and beyond, broken down into categories you may be searching for this year.
This podcast is hosted by author and speaker Nora McInerny, and allows the space for talking about just how hard life can be. Guests tell stories of traumas and trials they’ve been through, helping build a “community of people who get it.”
2. Life Kit
NPR’s Life Kit gives listeners tools and tips for navigating life and continuing to improve themselves. From coping with disorders to working out to managing personal relationships, Life Kit covers it all and is a great resource for ongoing self-development.
The host of Brown Girl Self-Care is Bre, the self-defined “Self-Care Pusher” from Southern California. She talks about how to improve life, with an edge toward women of color, covering everything from spirituality to healthy habits to mental health.
Journalist Mona Chalabi dives into some of our most pressing personal questions in Am I Normal? This podcast is a great place to find validation and to recognize that we’re all trying to do our best to understand how to navigate a healthy, happy life.
Dr. Joy Harden hosts the Therapy for Black Girls podcast, which walks through a range of mental-health-focused topics and personal development. Dr. Harden is a licensed psychologist and focuses on the particular challenges faced by Black women.
This podcast from the Harvard Business Review is a deep dive into what women have to deal with in the workplace, and how discrimination and other roadblocks can get in the way of success. Three women staffers at HBR host the show and interview experts to give listeners advice.
Comedian Deborah Frances-White hosts The Guilty Feminist, which is a podcast all about feminism and the pressures, insecurities, and hypocrisies feminists face today. It provides a dose of humor while navigating pretty intense subjects as Frances-White brings in expert guests for engaging conversations.
On this feminist podcast, two women—Anney and Samantha—cover a wide range of topics that impact women, thinking through the female experience in the context of science, history, and culture.
Nurse practitioner, master of public health, and certified life coach Victoria Albina hosts the Feminist Wellness podcast, which helps women lead more fulfilling lives. Her topics focus on developing self-love and moving past our stuck moments in life.
This ambitiously named podcast is from The Irish Times and is hosted by Róisín Ingle and Kathy Sheridan. They bring in women who are doing amazing things in the world and discuss pretty much anything women could be dealing with, worrying about, or reading about.
11. Code Switch
A group of journalists of color host Code Switch, a podcast that fosters meaningful conversations about race and what it looks like and means in our contemporary society. Code Switch is produced by NPR and was recognized as Apple Podcast’s first-ever Show of the Year.
When you’re looking for true stories and experiences related to diversity and inclusion, The Will to Change with Jennifer Brown delivers just that. She brings in experts like CEOs, authors, and entrepreneurs to discuss what these terms actually mean for today’s workplaces.
Disability Matters, hosted by Joyce Bender, focuses on empowering people with disabilities in the professional realm. The podcast discusses how this community can move up at work and overcome struggles, and episodes are live and include captioning.
14. All Inclusive
The All Inclusive podcast with Natasha Rainey provides strategies and advice to help people innovate their workplaces with diversity and inclusion. She talks to leaders in the field and people from the biggest global companies to provide important conversations and tips for all.
Long-time diversity and inclusion executive Audra Jenkins created Diversity Deep Dive, a podcast that shares “stories of resilience and perseverance against the odds.” Jenkins is focused on creating dialogue around biases, stereotypes, and best practices to help people both understand the landscape and continue to improve it.
16. Your Next Move
Kimberly Brown, career development coach and global diversity talent acquisition leader, runs the Your Next Move podcast. This one focuses on all things leadership development, guiding listeners (with a lean toward women and people of color) through the process of building a professional strategy and meeting their career goals.
17. Brown Ambition
From the Cumulus Podcast Network comes Brown Ambition, hosted by financial experts Mandi Woodruff and Tiffany “The Budgetnista” Aliche, author of the New York Times Bestseller, Get Good with Money. The duo provides listeners with a range of financial insights, focused on helping people build their wealth and make better choices in their career paths.
18. Lead to Win
This podcast is focused on strategies and advice for becoming a successful leader. Host Bo Bergen interviews experts and CEOs who talk about their journeys and provide listeners with actionable tips and secrets to succeed.
As marketed, the 9 to 5ish podcast provides “the work advice you need, from women who’ve been there.” Co-founders of the media company theSkimm, Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg bring in experts from many different industries, helping listeners understand what it takes to move up and be effective leaders.
20. Side Hustle Pro
Entrepreneurs and side hustlers should check out Side Hustle Pro with entrepreneur Nicaila Matthews Okome. This weekly podcast gives business owners and dreamers the right strategies to grow from the ground up, with regular interviews with experts and inspiring Black women entrepreneurs.
21. Second Life
Hillary Kerr hosts the Second Life podcast, which walks through how to navigate career changes and brings in CEOs and founders to talk about their professional journeys. Kerr is known for co-founding Who What Wear, a successful international fashion company.
22. The Daily
This New York Times podcast walks through the latest news with a deep dive into one story every day. Journalists Michael Barbaro and Sabrina Tavernise host the series, and they bring in other award-winning journalists from across the globe.
23. Las Culturistas
When you’re looking for culture commentary that’s funny and more lighthearted, follow the Las Culturistas podcast with Matt Rogers and Bowen Yang. The podcast dives into the latest in pop culture and brings in special guests who are trending in the news.
24. The Read
The Read, hosted by New York City transplants Kid Fury and Crissle, fosters discussions about pop culture and the latest news and trends in the hip-hop world. The two hosts are also friends who talk about their personal lives and challenges in entertaining podcast sessions.
Brought to you by iHeartPodcsts, Stuff You Should Know is a general interest resource, covering everything from science to rumors and myths to animal kingdom secrets to pop culture mysteries. Hosts Josh and Chuck help listeners learn about some of the most interesting topics out there, just because.
26. The Journal.
The Journal. is the Wall Street Journal’s regular news deep-dive, featuring hosts Kate Linebaugh, Ryan Knutson, and Jessica Mendoza. The daily podcast gives comprehensive overviews and unique takes on the nation’s latest news about money and business.
27. Crime Junkie
Sometimes you just want to be pulled into a good story. This insanely popular true crime podcast covers a different mind-boggling story with each episode. Hosts Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat are self-proclaimed crime junkies, bringing descriptions and updates of the most interesting stories to listeners each week.
The hosts of Morbid are an autopsy technician and a hairstylist, and they’re not afraid to confront “creepy history and all things spooky.” They walk through gruesome murders and true crime stories that will entertain listeners who also have a morbid curiosity.
If you want a more comprehensive documentary podcast that digs into one crime, opt for Your Own Backyard this year. Host and journalist Chris Lambert provides coverage throughout an impressive years-long investigation into the 1996 disappearance of Kristin Smart, a Cal Poly student.
Less about murder and more about a bizarre scam, the Scamanda podcast takes a look at a decades-long lie told by a woman, mother, Christian, blogger, and purported cancer survivor. This limited documentary podcast series is a pretty wild ride.
Journalist Phoebe Judge, who also hosts This Is Love, focuses on stories from people who have had crimes committed against them or have committed crimes themselves. Each episode is under an hour and tells a gripping story about some kind of crime from the past.
Each season of the Suspect podcast covers a different true crime story. Season 3, “Five Shots in the Dark,” is all about Leon Benson, who was convicted of killing Kasey Schoen in 1998 and spent over two decades in prison. Hosts Matt Shaer and Lara Bazelon, an attorney, investigate what really happened in this case and if justice was really served. The first two seasons of Suspect are also worth a listen.