My Recent Discovery: I Enjoy Podcasts

podcasts-quote-glen-weldon

I recently traveled for a wedding. While on that trip, I did something I didn’t think would intrigue me so much.

I listened to podcasts.

A few months ago, I downloaded quite a few not really sure when I would listen to them. I downloaded a handful of interviews from the Rhett and Link podcast Ear Biscuits. Rhett and Link are the faces of the ever-popular YouTube channel Good Mythical Morning.

And for those of you who may not know, I love YouTube. I would much rather watch a YouTube video than a hip Netflix show. As a result, I am extremely willing to support YouTubers in their endeavors outside of the platform as well, whether that be Rhett and Link’s podcast, Rosana Pansino’s baking line, or LaurDIY’s pajamas.

I am committed to watching someone’s channel and their professional pursuits take flight. Once I follow you, I am fairly invested.

Yet, truthfully, I did not think I’d really like podcasts because I am not really a fan of audiobooks. Granted, now that I think about it, they aren’t really the same. But, for the longest time, I thought, if I didn’t like one, I wouldn’t like the other.

I don’t like audiobooks because it is extremely difficult for me to follow them. As an English major, I much rather prefer a physical, tangible book over one via headphones. I often get distracted when listening to audiobooks.

And I can’t be that person who listens to something new while completing another task. Therefore, I think if I were to ever listen to an audiobook, it’d have to be one I’ve read a plethora of times, like To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

I can’t be surprised. It is too overwhelming. In order for me to intently listen, I have to completely devote myself to the task.

So, with this mentality, I didn’t think podcasts would work out well for me. But, after listening to Rhett and Link’s Ear Biscuits, I realized I’d been going about podcasts all wrong. My preconceived idea of audiobooks made me think podcasts had to be rigid and polished, like a textbook or college course.

But, that isn’t the case at all. Rhett and Link showed me that all you need for a successful podcast is someone willing to share their story with people willing to listen.

The relational person in me was instantly hooked. I was hooked to the chatty interview style, question and answer podcasts with the main goal of simply connecting with people.

But, even then, it wasn’t about Rhett and Link asking questions and shaping the interview. It was about hearing the interviewee bring their stories to life.

I loved the idea of getting to know YouTubers in an intimate one-on-one setting. I loved getting to hear their back stories and thoughts in their own words. For that hour, I was immersed in the dialogue and I just wanted to know more—so much so that I was sad when each interview ended.

So, now, I am hooked to podcasts. After listening to a handful of Ear Biscuits episodes, I’ve found my genre—people…as if that should surprise me!

In fact, as I write this post, I realize I probably liked podcasts even before listening to Ear Biscuits. I just didn’t know it! For, throughout my communication degree path, I have had to listen to a couple of podcasts called Serial and StoryCorps.

And listening to them were some of my favorite assignments because I am invested in getting to know people. I suppose back then it didn’t seem as exciting because it was required of me. Or, perhaps I refused to disbelieve my preconceived notion.

However, I choose to embrace this new truth now.

I choose to believe podcasts are no longer this conglomerate of boring informational textbook-like resources. Instead, they are just another resource for getting to know people. For hearing stories.

That isn’t intimidating to me anymore. In fact, it is exciting. It is reinvigorating.

So, now I find myself enthralled by the task of finding people-oriented podcasts, like Ear Biscuits, StoryCorps, or Serial.

Needless to say, I would LOVE to hear what podcasts you all gravitate toward. I am invested. The more options the better!

And as for you all, my call is this: Listen to one Ear Biscuits episode, especially one of the older ones back in 2014 or so. Even if you don’t like the style and format of the podcast, I challenge you to get to know any of the people Rhett and Link have interviewed, whether it be Justine Ezarik, Lindsey Stirling, Natalie Tran, or someone completely different.

If anything, listen to get a glimpse of why I enjoy YouTube so much. This call may seem a little selfish. But, trust me, it is worth it.

YouTubers are fascinating people. The platform may be evolving on a daily basis, but I believe the people who originally got started to simply make videos over ten years ago are some of the most genuine individuals.

Blessings,

Renata

Thank you dearly for taking time out of your lives to read my blog! Your support means the world to me. I praise God you found this blog, whether you stumbled upon it accidentally or sought it out intentionally.

I’d LOVE to hear from you all! Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me at coffee.soothes.the.soul@gmail.com.

I pray God would bless you and be with you always, no matter where you find yourselves in life.

He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. – Romans 4:25 (NIV).

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LA 2028: Let the Adventure Begin

LA-2028-victory-Eric GarcettiNearly a year ago, actually 364 days, to be exact, I wrote a blog post about my bucket list goal to one day witness the Summer Olympics in person, even it meant leaving the country. It was within that week I discovered that Los Angeles was a contender for the 2024 Summer Olympics.

Well, it is official: The Olympics are coming back to the United States. The International Olympic Committee made their vote official on Wednesday, September 13.

Paris 2024. LA 2028.

I AM ECSTATIC.

I am a firm believer in God’s timing and His perfect plan. I don’t think it is a coincidence at all either that one of the YouTubers I follow, iJustine, finally got to have one of her biggest dreams come true this week, too. She got to attend an Apple keynote speech.

Not only did she get to attend an Apple keynote speech, but she got to do so in the new Steve Jobs Theater. She got to be there for the event marking 10 years of the iPhone. I definitely prefer Apple over Android. But, I don’t love Apple products as much as iJustine does.

Nevertheless, the happiness I feel for her and being able to watch her dream come true is incredible. For, even in the short three years that I have been subscribed to her, I am well aware of her love and appreciation for all things Apple. I am aware of her resounding passion.

And that is why I am ecstatic about the Summer Olympics coming back to the United States in 2028. My passion for the Olympics parallels iJustine’s passion for Apple. Lord willing, I will do all I can to be there 11 years from now.  The official announcement is one step closer to that dream coming true.

Now, I can diligently start saving. Now, I can look forward to an event that manages to bring the entire world together.

Most importantly, the official announcement, paired with iJustine’s Apple keynote adventures, remind me that good things come to those who wait. iJustine has dreamt about going to a keynote speech since she was 10 or 11, long before she even knew what a keynote speech was. Twenty plus years later, her dream came true.

I’ve dreamt about going to the Olympics since I was about 15 years old. So, if it is part of God’s plan for me to be there, it will be a dream 19, if not twenty plus, years in the making. That’s incredible. For me, that’s worth the wait, for it’s a dream in the making.

Also, good things come to those who enjoy a product, company, or event with the same wholehearted devotion and enthusiasm, whether they are there in person or watching via a television or computer screen.

Good things come to those who believe in their passions, no matter the following, comments, or weird stares that may come along. Back to the Lord’s perfect timing, iJustine said on the same day, she hit 4 million subscribers and got the official email from Apple inviting her to the keynote, which said, “Let’s meet at our place.”

In a separate video, iJustine she took the time to thank her subscribers. She also said others have said comments like, “Wow, you’ve been on YouTube for over 10 years and you are just now getting to 4 million?”

And her response to that? “Yeah, I did. But, you know, I am still here. I am still making videos. And I still actually really genuinely love what I am doing.”

So, there you have it. Los Angeles will host the 2028 Summer Olympics. In 2028, the entire world will follow the sun. In 2028, Lord willing, my husband and I will be there to witness history.

Until then, I will continue to appreciate the Olympics for their goodness and glory from the comfort of my home, just as iJustine will continue to be wholeheartedly devoted to Apple no matter how many other products she has from them or their competitors. For, at the end of the day, she will always rank Apple as the best of the best.

For now, I will relish in it. I will thank God for His perfect timing for myself and iJustine. I will thank God for planting this strong desire and passion in my heart so many years ago.

I cannot wait to see how the journey toward getting there unfolds. I am certain that as long as I still have a blog I will continue to write about the journey one step at a time. I know I am in for quite the adventure. You better believe it is one I am more than willing to take.

Blessings,

Renata

 

The Creative Process: Publish and Let Go

Creative process-Jonathan-IveThere are few times in my blogging life where I get to write about something in full detail the moment I am inspired to do so. Thankfully, right now, is one of those times. I am going to take full advantage of it.

Within the last 10 minutes, I just watched a YouTube video that captivated me and kept me at the edge of my seat. It is about train hopping by YouTuber Marcus Johns, who is a diligently aspiring film maker and director.

He was one the handful of YouTubers I started following thanks to a nonchalant YouTube recommendation. Most of the time, the YouTube recommendations are far from something I would actually enjoy, for YouTube is notorious for assuming once you watch one type of video, the platform algorithm assumes that’s all you want to watch.

For once, YouTube got a recommendation right. I was intrigued by Marcus, especially because he is a devout Christian. So, I stuck around not really knowing what would come of it.

Well, here I am a few months later, after subscribing to both him and his wife, Kristin.

I can’t quite describe it, but there’s something inspiring and intriguing about following and supporting fellow creatives. The creative person in me loves it. Quite frankly, this post is one of the many times fellow creatives inspire me to do the same in the best way I know how—by writing.

The writer in me is enthralled when I find an unapologetic and energized storyteller. The writer in me is mesmerized by people who can take a seemingly boring storyline and turn it into an entertaining masterpiece, whether it be six seconds, 10 minutes, or a full-length future film.

That’s why I watch YouTube. That’s why I see films. I may know next to nothing about filming or video production, but I do know a thing or two about storytelling. I do know a thing or two about keeping people intrigued. I do know a thing or two about being real, honest, and transparent.

So, Marcus had me hooked, when I found his most recent video was Episode 1 of a train hopping documentary called “Yard Boys.”

What intrigued me the most to watch the video was something he said in his video previewing the eight-part episodes documentary. He said he put the documentary out on YouTube because he just needed to let it go. He needed to stop it from occupying his life.

The writer in me totally got it. I was already going to watch the episode, but that snippet from him ensured me this would be a quality documentary.

In one of my previous blog posts, I challenged myself to finish the unfinished blog posts I have. Part of finishing the unfinished that we work so meticulously over is knowing when to let go of those pieces. It is knowing when enough is enough, despite our expectations, whether they are high, low, or non-existent.

Honestly, I think it says a lot about a creative person to know when to run with an idea and when to walk away from it, too. I think it says a lot to decide, “I could put more work into this. But, I am tired of it occupying my time, energy, and well-being, so I won’t.”

I think it says a lot about a creative person to embrace the imperfections of a piece.

However, doing so is probably one of the most difficult parts of creativity. I struggle to do so with every single blog post I publish. This one is no exception, I assure you. The perfectionist and grammar nerd in me has a tough time embracing the flaws of my own work. I think that’s because I am my own worst critic, more than anything else, honestly.

Time and time again, I have to pull myself out of the creative trap that is so easy to fall into. I constantly struggle with the tug and pull of being proud of my work but also being genuine in my work.

As a result, I am willing to let go of mistakes here and there for the sake of honesty and transparency. I am willing to walk away from a piece knowing I am publishing it in God’s timing, not mine.

I am slowly learning to let the content speak more than the details. After all, I started this blog to share the message of Jesus Christ, not be a perfectionist, which I must remind myself on a consistent basis.

Therefore, if the message is something you are proud of and it is loud and clear, the details and imperfections that are more than likely only noticeable to you—the creator—will not matter in the end. In fact, by God’s divine grace and mercy, they will probably only make your story that much more meaningful.

So, I say kudos to Marcus Johns. I say thank you for sharing this piece with us. Thank you for simply putting it out there, regardless of the format.

If I’ve learned anything from this blogging journey, it is that the hardest part is hitting that publish button. But, by the grace of God, it is the easiest part as well.

For, in that moment, we ultimately have no control over it. In that moment, we can finally let it go and, as Marcus said, “Well, here it is. I hope you like it.”

Blessings,

Renata