The Most Important Thing I Learned from These Personal Development Podcasts

In a previous article, I mentioned how I became interested in listening to the motivational talks of a dead old man named Jim Rohn. I watched some of his videos on YouTube. From there, I began to listen to podcasts in general. best personal development podcasts

I listen to podcasts for one reason – they motivate me. I’m well aware that motivation should come from within rather than relying on external forces. But there is just something so powerful about hearing someone else’s story and how they overcame challenges in their life, especially when I need a little extra push.

Listening to podcasts has made me enjoy things that I once found difficult. If you’ve read the book Atomic Habits, it mentions one of the best ways to make good habits is to make them more appealing. I used to drag myself into exercising and doing house chores, but now, I have something to listen to while completing these tasks.


For example, I know it would take me 30 minutes to finish my workout routine, so I’ll find a podcast that is 30 minutes long to help me stay on pace. As my mind wanders, my physical being is already doing what needs to be done. Before I knew it, I’m already finished with my workout and was able to do two things simultaneously: that felt great!

If you’re wondering what podcasts I listen to, here they are:

3 Best Personal Development Podcasts I listen to

The Minimalist Podcast

The Minimalist Podcast: One of the best personal development podcasts of today

The Minimalist Podcast has been a lifesaver for me. I’ve always wanted to live with less, but it’s hard when you don’t know how, and there are so many things that society tells us we need to be happy. This podcast teaches the basics of living a simple life without clutter- physical, emotional, mental, and digital – plus they’re witty!

The School of Greatness Podcast

School of Greatness Podcast - Lewis Howes: One of the best personal development podcasts of today

This podcast features incredible interviews with some of the world’s most successful and influential people. Lewis Howes, the podcast host, taps into his guests’ genius to learn how they achieved success by combining intelligence and character with emotional intelligence. I love the questions he asks – more profound than just “What did you remember from your childhood?” or “How did you get where are now?”.

The Mindset Mentor

The Mindset Mentor Podcast: One of the best personal development podcasts of today

Rob has a voice like no other. He’s able to speak about mindset topics in such an exciting way that it makes you really think and question the best ways to approach things, so they don’t seem impossible anymore. Listening to him is like getting coached by the coolest guy on the block who just happens to have “been there.” His podcast is truly a gem!

The Most Important Thing I Learned from these Podcasts

I don’t think I could pick one that’s my favorite. The podcasts I mentioned above are all different, but each has their own merits and advice for listeners. But more than the self-development lessons, there’s one thing I realized while listening to these podcasts -that to achieve greater heights, you must be willing to confront one thing that most people find uncomfortable to face.

Can you guess what this one thing is?

If you think this one thing is fear of change, fear of failure, or fear of rejection, it’s not. It’s deeper than that.

Still, it involves fear.

It’s the fear of dealing with childhood trauma.

Childhood trauma is not always a bad thing. This can be one of your main anchors to strive for success in life. In fact, in the three podcasts I mentioned above, the hosts repeatedly say how their childhood traumas made them stronger and more intent on winning.

  • The hosts of the Minimalist Podcast, Joshua and Ryan, both grew up developing traumas in homes where alcohol and drug abuse were rampant.

  • Lewis Howes, the host of The School of Greatness Podcast, lived with the pain and deep trauma resulting from childhood sexual abuse.

  • Rob Dial, the host of The Mindset Mentor, has been vocal about how his parents struggled with alcohol addiction and how it greatly affected him while growing up.

How I’m dealing with my childhood trauma

I was born into a very chaotic household. My parents were together, but they’re emotionally distant since I can remember. I never saw them showing affection for each other. I don’t even remember the last time we shared a meal as a family, and it would never happen again as I already lost my dad last year.

Loud screams, huge fights- it’s all just become the daily norm to me.

The environment I was in created a deep mental and physical trauma that triggers when I hear someone raise his voice or see people fighting. I just freeze and hyperventilate.

As a result, I became a people-pleaser. I was too afraid of confrontations or misunderstandings. I’d instead raise a white flag than raise tension with anybody. I’ve always craved for peace since that’s the very thing I don’t have at home. And as we all know, we all crave something we rarely have.

Although I’m very open and outrageous when I’m with my friends, I’m the very opposite at home. I have my own world. This is one of the reasons why I get so many things done while I’m at home because it’s the only thing I can do to distract myself from the dysfunctionality of my family.

I’m a high-risk taker when it comes to finances, but I play safe when it comes to things that deal with emotions.

My father’s death was a wake-up call to me. I realized that life is too short of suppressing our thoughts and feelings. All of this made me realize how important it is for people to speak up. To be vocal enough to be understood.

At this point in my life, I have never been as open and as vocal to my family as before. And I think this is the start of the healing process I’ve always needed since I was a child.

Dealing with childhood trauma

“Give me a child until he is 7, and I will show you the man.”


During our first seven years, our brain develops at an intense pace. It’s like a sponge that absorbs everything you throw into it. This is when we are learning skills and how to function in society as well as in our own lives.

The environment that you grow up in, no matter if it’s a very supportive and caring one or a harsh and abusive one, will significantly impact what kind of person you will become.

We’re full-grown adults with unresolved childhood traumas.

Everyone has a different experience with trauma. Although some people may have dealt with something worse than others, one thing is for sure: our childhood trauma is something that significantly dictates how we respond and react to life.

The traumas we had will dictate our attachment style. And it’s crazy to think that the way we attach ourselves in relationships is closely related to how our trauma played out.

The traumas of childhood can profoundly affect your sense of self and be a significant cause of mental restrictions that will keep you from living your best life.

Being able to identify where you lie on this spectrum is an essential step in healing.

PS: This article from Rob Dial about childhood trauma is one good read.

Final Thoughts

I speak from experience as I’ve had to deal with my own trauma. It was hard enough for me just being a child, but it became even harder when the traumatic events that happened in my life began to change how I interacted and related to other people.

At this point, I believe that unless we ask deeper questions and make time to go deeper into ourselves, the effects of our childhood traumas will always resurface in one way or another. We will always react or behave the same way a little differently every time, but still, get the same results every single time.

And we will constantly be repeating history.

I believe that the mind can only heal if it is given time to explore and understand itself and its own past traumas that are affecting us in present-day life.

We need to take a step back, look for patterns of behavior or reactions, and then make conscious efforts to break those patterns.

It takes courage and radical vulnerability, but you can start by sharing your story.

Success means differently for every one of us. One might look successful based on societal standards but has a failed mark on their own success metrics.

And unless we’re willing to confront that heavyweight that is pulling us down, we’ll never be able to rise above to see what true success means for us.

The key takeaway here isn’t that you’re successful or not. It is realizing how much power and control you have in your own life when you take the time to confront and be completely honest with yourself.

Sheila is a civil engineer by profession but has switched careers to become a copywriter. She loves making sales through stories that are relatable to the average person. She's also a sucker for memes and thinks she’s the funniest person in the world (even though she knows that’s not true). Her favorite drink is Kopiko Brown coffee, but she'll also take tea or beer if it's offered.


  • Jojisilia Villamor

    The podcasts you mentioned seem interesting. I will check them out. I’m currently listening to the audio book “Stealing Fire.” It’s a non-fiction ebook that talks about altering consciousness to stop the mind from the constant chatter it creates. Altering consciousness also increases creativity in finding solutions to complex problems. Maybe this would also interest you 🙂

  • Jullian Robin Sibi

    I love that you listed down some podcasts here! I listen to some myself which inspired me to start one. 😀 There’s a lot of hope for people who have childhood trauma if it means you get to learn and be stronger to go through life.

  • Margaux Camaya

    I’m glad that your own personal experiences motivated you and made you a capable and talented person. It didn’t limit you nor stop you from achieving your own goals and success. I’ve also tried listening to podcasts but I’m more of a visual person compared to an auditory one.

    • Sheila

      Thank you Marg! I’m also more of a visual person and it’s just recently that I got fascinated listening to podcasts especially if my eyes are too strained to read something hahaha

  • Armie

    Sheila, know that I love how you put so much thoughts and love into your entry every week. You’ve been consistent since day one. On this particular post, thank you for your podcast list (will defo check them out) and for being vulnerable. I hope we could meet in person one day and I am sure we have endless topics we can talk about. Let’s tag along Roneth and let’s visit Charen in Japan. Let’s tag Ms. Jojie along, too. One day, when this pandemic is over.

    • Sheila

      Thank youuu Armie! And yes please, maybe we can also have an online meetup once again since it’s kind of hard to meet physically atm.

  • carlo olano

    I haven’t been listening much to podcasts but years back I was also into it and I learned a lot as well. My favorite back then was the Art of Charm and I think after reading your article, I want to check on it once again. I’m also curious about that minimalist podcast since I’m writing an article about living with less now. I guess it’s too late to listen to an episode since my deadline is in an hour hahahaha.

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