Growing up, my parents always listened to NPR. As a parent now myself, I finally understand why. I always remember my dad listening to NPR in his truck whenever he drove us anywhere. I always wanted to listen to my station, but I understand now as an adult why he wanted to listen to his station instead. He always had a strict rule that whoever is driving chooses the radio station (of course, this was long before SiriusXM radio or CarPlay…). He drove a minimum of forty-five minutes to and from work every day, so the time in his truck was to get ready for the day or unwind after it.
I cherish the time when I can listen to music while doing activities other than driving. We all have to clean or do the necessary, but boring, tasks, so why not make it go by faster? I find popping in at least one earbud helps to take the edge off some of the stress while accomplishing tasks. I find this helpful especially when we get home from picking up the kids and then struggling to unpack backpacks, pack next day lunches, and fix dinner.
NPR offers so many options other than music, news, and games. I used to love trying to guess the answers to “Wait Wait….Don’t Tell Me” just like when watching jeopardy. The game show always reminds me of the movie “O Brother Where Art Thou?” for some reason. There are so many podcasts these days that I get overwhelmed sometimes. Yes, they offer the news but also so many science stories as well as heartwarming stories. I find it heartwarming so many go back to a radio broadcast whether it’s via radio or the internet just like before everyone had a TV or computer in their house.
I fondly remember listening to Opera during my senior year of undergrad school to deal with the stress of a Capstone project. I understand how calming NPR can be now and am glad they are still broadcasting in such a capacity. This is your friendly reminder that so many things can be self-care including listening to a podcast while doing other things. Make the effort to recharge doing the things you love.