7 Ways to Absorb and Retain Podcast Knowledge | Day 25/30

7 Ways to Absorb and Retain Podcast Knowledge | Day 25/30
This entry is part 25 of 30 in the series 2019 BLOG CHALLENGE

This was not today’s prompt, but I wrote it anyway. 

What do you do with Podcasts beyond listening for entertainment, cultural awareness, personal improvement, inspiration, connecting, expanding ideas and perspectives, or seeking information and gaining expertise on a particular topic? How do you get actively and emotionally involved with what is being said? How do you listen, take in information at a deeper level, and hold onto it longer for future use?

I ask these questions because there was a point in my get-into-podcasts phase when I would consume a full episode and come out of it with zero gains. It felt like a waste of time. It had to change.

Here’s how to learn through Pods:

Photo by Matthew Guay on Unsplash

1. Have a notebook nearby

Mental notes are useless, at least to me. With the easy accessibility of note-taking apps, fewer people still use physical notebooks to capture and retain interesting information. Whichever tickles your fancy have it close by. I can’t recall how many blog topic ideas have come out of listening to a podcast and writing down a few notes.

Make written summaries to explain to yourself what you consumed.

2. Make use of the Pause and Rewind buttons

I’m one of those annoying people to watch or listen to anything with. Nothing passes. And if it does, I rewind until I get it. Then I hit pause because multitasking is at the bottom of my abilities list. It is then that I take a moment to reflect on what has been said and then write down some interesting bits.

Some people re-listen over multiple sessions.

3. Increase the listening speed

Speed up the pace to get the most out of an episode in a shorter amount of time. Increase it to just above where you’re comfortable. This way, you have to stretch yourself, but you can still understand and retain everything being said. Over time, the mind naturally adjusts to the higher rate and sounds normal. Once this happens, increase the speed again.

Slow down when;

→Listening or the very first time

→Listening to more complex content

→You want to relax and be entertained.

4. Share in conversation or through recommendations and reviews

I love sharing podcast recommendations and reviews, whether offline or online. There’s no way you can forget what an episode or show was about if you mention it to someone else or create interesting discussions from it.

5. Treat it as a referral/resource center

Make use of metadata on the description bar that usually publishes show notes, a timeline, and links to the host or guest’s website for further exploration. You can also get quality references/resources from the episode itself as the host takes you on a journey of different topics.

6. Follow up with a similar podcast

It helps to follow up a podcast you’ve just listened to with another podcast on a similar topic, in which similar issues are covered but maybe from a slightly different perspective. Make use of the search button on your podcast apps, as most now show similar episodes if you type in a keyword or phrase.

7. Make an action step

The main takeaway here is don’t just write down notes or do further research, then do nothing with the information. Personalize the information by translating an idea into a meaningful action step to apply to your life. This can be either through tasks, action plans, content creation, actionable changes in your continued personal growth, etc.

Reflect and apply.

Series Navigation<< We Can Coexist Peacefully in Sexual and Racial Diversity | Day 24/30A Family Story in Pictures | Day 26/30 >>


  1. June 26, 2019 / 1:27 pm

    Please recommend podcasts you listen to?

    • Lila
      June 26, 2019 / 11:08 pm

      I listen to loads depending on the topics. Which formats interest you the most? Storytelling or solo commentary or just conversational?

      • June 27, 2019 / 7:55 am

        Story telling and conversational

      • Lila
        June 27, 2019 / 10:53 pm

        Okay check out Stuff Mom Never Told You, Reply All, Modern Love, The Read, The Receipts, Do you even blog, Podcaster’s roundtable, Hidden Brain, The ground Up show, Human Interest Podcast

        Start with these I’m sure you’ll like one or two. Reach out if you need more specific ones including African.

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