Top 7 mental health and well-being podcasts of 2021

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The past year and a half has been a trying year for Hongkongers. With unique challenges and a fear of unpredictable circumstances being thrown at us, Covid-19 was the largest contributor to employee mental health decline across the city. According to a survey conducted by the City Mental Health Alliance Hong Kong (CMHA HK), it was revealed that 27% of employees in the city have experienced mental health problems in the past 12 months. But it was also found that mental health has risen to become a priority in many Hongkongers lives. 

“growing efforts by employers to improve workplace wellbeing are now being recognised by employees, with attitudes towards both mental health and mental ill health showing positive signs of change as awareness increases and more employees feel able to reach out for support,” said Dr. Zoë Fortune, CEO of CMHA HK.

To help navigate through tough times, we recommend seven mental health podcasts for sound advice and navigating through tough times.  

1. Talking Mental
Hosted by Hong Kong-based bilingual Aaron Stadlin-Robbie, Talking Mental is all about mental health. Each episode, a different guest is interviewed to discuss their expertise in the field and various light topics such as sleep, medication, and lifestyle. Recognising the stigma that surrounds mental health issues in the city, the podcast navigates through these topics in a non-judgmental, educational and informative way.

2. Ten Percent Happier
Hosted by the author of the New York Times best selling book of the same name, Dan Harris expands his Ten Percent Happier journey through meditation. Featuring meditation coaches, scientists as well as other experts across the field, listeners can dive into the conversation of mental well-being and discovering their own path to discovering a more fulfilled and happier life. 

3. The Hilarious World of Depression
Using humour as a tool to lift and understand the dark veil that is depression, The Hilarious World of Depression, an award-winning hit podcast hosted by veteran humorist and public radio host John Moe, invites listeners in on the conversations he has with guests who have dealt with depression and managed to find a reason to laugh along the way. After all, laughter is the best medicine.

4. Unlocking Us with Berne Brown
“Let go of who you think you’re supposed to be; embrace who you are”, says American professor, researcher and number one best-selling author Berne Brown. In her latest body of work, Unlocking Us with Berne Browne is a podcast that explores the universal experiences of being human. From trauma, self-esteem, resilience and healing, she, along with her guests of field experts, unpack the bravest moments to the most brokenhearted experiences, while navigating through the deeply human parts of who we are so that we can live, love, parent, and lead with more courage and heart. 

5. On Purpose
Following the viral spread of his wisdom-filled videos on his YouTube channel, former Hindu-monk, award-winning storyteller, podcaster and one of the most followed personalities on social media, Jay Shetty, serves up a podcast as your on-the-go well-being companion for a more purposeful, mindful and productive lifestyle. Offering deep, meaningful conversations with a diverse lineup of high-profile guests, from the late Kobe Bryant to musician and song writer Alicia Keys to intellectual and best-selling author Yuval Noah Harari.

6. Terrible, thanks for asking
Does anybody else feel that awkward pinch of discomfort whenever they are asked, “how are you?”. Don’t worry — you’re not alone. In Terrible, thanks for asking, podcast host and author Nora McInerny breaks through the superficial layers of “How are you” and “Fine, thanks” by offering her platform for her guests to share their real, complicated and honest feelings about how they really are. The episodes are sometimes sad, sometimes funny, often both but always relatable.

7. The Lavendaire Lifestyle
A podcast on personal growth, art and lifestyle for the youth that shares weekly inspirations, guided meditation and real-talk conversations with varied guests that will offer your teens a platform to find a connection and hopefully feel a little less. Hosted by Hong Kong entrepreneur Aileen Xu whose podcast is ranked among the top in iTunes’ Self Self and Mental Health categories.