My current reading/ watching/ listening list

I subscribe to a bunch of newsletters, blogs, websites and video channels that have a focus on wellbeing.

It makes total sense when you consider my job involves communicating these concepts to others 🙂

I thought I’d share the best of the ones that I currently subscribe to.

I don’t recommend you try to follow all of them yourself. You probably already have a lot of email coming in. But adding one or two and seeing if you get value from them over time is something I’d recommend [note: I often use the time spent adding things to my reading list as a time to remove things I am not enjoying/finding useful]

The path of mental health and wellbeing is one you’ll walk your entire life and the teachers and resources that you collect along the way will influence the directions you take. Surround yourself with good quality content and you are much more likely to adopt habits and practices that build your wellbeing over time. I like the term ‘information diet‘ to refer to the content we consume, particularly online. The better the information sources, the more positive an impact they have on our lives.

So here are the resources I subscribe to that regularly fill my email inbox with useful wellbeing-related content. Most of these have personal relevance. Some are also directly useful for my work at Flinders. Some are Australia specific, so keep that in mind.

I’ll update this list as I add more sources to my weekly read. Note that many of these have corresponding social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook etc), so you might decide to follow them on those platforms, rather than email.

Health and Mental Health

Stanford University’s Student Wellbeing Page – yes it is focused on Stanford students, but there are lots of generic wellbeing articles of value on their site.

Greater Good In Action – science-based practices for a meaningful life. An initiative of the Greater Good Science Center.

ABC Newsletters – Specifically select the news you want to get from Australia’s best news source (in my opinion). I get the science and health ones. You can even sign up to get a mental health specific newsletter.

Blue Zones Newsletter – learn how the longest living people in the world achieve this great feat and establish habits in your own life that mimic these behaviours.

Nutrition Facts – daily videos on fascinating nutrition topics

Psyche – “a digital magazine from Aeon that illuminates the human condition through psychology, philosophical understanding and the arts.” I am a big fan of their ‘guides‘ which tackle practical strategies for real-world experiences.

Psychwire – answers from world-leading experts in behavioural science on a range of mental health themed questions.

Weekend University (WU) – a recent addition to my list, WU involves lectures from varied people making psychology concepts more accessible.

Relationships

Marriage Minute – email newsletter from the Gottman institute with brief tips for building better relationships.

Better thinking and productivity

Effectiviology – a website exploring concepts from psychology and philosophy.

College Info Geek – US focused but lots of excellent content on studying and productivity.

Farnam Street – articles and links on how to be a better thinker. I particularly like the podcast attached to this site “The Knowledge Project” with Shane Parrish in which he speaks to people who are high performers in their respective fields to try and work out what their most beneficial strategies are.

Cal Newport’s Study Hacks Blog – tips on productivity and focused work.

Scott Young – articles on learning and productivity.

Learning Scientists – scientific research on learning to make you a better learner or teacher.

Huberman Podcast – a fantastic podcast exploring neuroscience-based tools for better sleep, productivity, stress management, focus and more.

The Thesis Whisperer – definitely one for those of you completing a PhD or similarly large written project.

Life skills

School of Life – Wide range of articles, tools, classes, books, games and more on that explore the philosophy of living – how to live a ‘good’ life.

BPS Research Digest – psychology research, digested, to help you apply it to living a better life.

Big Think – Insights on many different topics from thought leaders.

Financial wellbeing

Moneysmart – articles on all aspects of managing your finances including links to supports for those with money troubles

Spaceship Learn – articles with a focus on investing

Strong Money Australia – a blog by an average guy on how to achieve financial independence

Raiz Invest Blog – articles focused on investing

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts – learn about the latest science on nutrition in bite-sized video chunks

Nutrition Made Simple – great YouTube channel from physician, research scientist, science communicator, speaker and writer Gil Carvalho

Plant Chompers – Another great YouTube channel of an earth scientist who discusses plant based diets.

Meditation

I utilise two apps for my meditation training. Both require a subscription for full access.

Waking Up – this meditation app digs deep into understanding conscious experience and the functioning of one’s mind. You can get a 30 day free trial via this link.

Ten Percent – this meditation app provides practical applications of mindfulness to everyday challenges. Ten Percent also provide a free newsletter which has great articles on meditation practice.

Self-help books

There are so many self-help/self-development books on the market and everyone’s requirements are unique, it is very hard to make specific recommendations.

Thus I have two pieces of advice.

  1. Sign up to Goodreads and track your reading and use reviews and recommendations to find new books. You can find me on there. The goal isn’t to find the ‘perfect’ self-help book. The goal is to sample many different ones and find the ideas and constructs that resonate with you and help you make practical improvements to your life.
  2. I do consistently recommend two books that I think help describe an overarching process for self-improvement, rather than make specific suggestions. They are Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg and Atomic Habits by James Clear.

Some bonus ones

Mynoise.net – the ultimate online noise generator. I use it to create sounds that help me focus and relax.

Brainfm – another audio generator that creates music/sounds specifically for study, relaxing and sleep. I often combine it with MyNoise.

Insight Timer – massive catalogue of lessons and meditations on various topics.

YouTube Music – everyone needs a source of great tunes. Spotify and Apple Music are similar services.

A note about reducing one’s information intake

Whilst I encourage you to build an ‘information diet’ that consists of high quality resources that help you lead a better life, it is possible to find oneself drowning in emails, podcasts, books etc.

If this is the case, a good starting point is an email cleanse. Unsubscribe to all those newsletters and news sources that you don’t actually read or don’t allow you to build a better life. I recently went on a bit of an email cleanse, and unsubscribed to well over 30+ sources that I rarely read. In the subsequent days, the flow of content coming into my email was dramatically reduced which had a noticeable (positive) impact on feelings of urgency and tension.

It is a balancing act. Finding the right amount of information to keep you growing and learning, but not making you feel overwhelmed or like you are always running behind.

Is there a wellbeing focused newsletter that you receive that brings knowledge and wisdom into your life? Let me know in the comments below.

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