Maura Sweeney co-hosts The State of Happiness Talk Radio Show in Tampa Bay

International Podcast Day is more important than we know.

I remember the days of minimal communication, information and entertainment choices. Growing up, I could watch assigned TV programs on CBS, NBC and ABC with two or three additional dry programs appearing on some obscure, local station. There was so much more I wanted to see and learn!

Listening to my car radio was no different. There were so few music choices. “I don’t fit into any of these three or four station formats designed for me,” I mused. “Where can I go to hear music I really like, with sounds and lyrics that truly resonate?” 

Today, that’s all changed and I am one of millions of beneficiaries around the globe taking advantage of a plethora of new options. In ways previously unimaginable, podcasting has opened the floodgates. People from every background and persuasion can produce their own content. Conversely, listeners everywhere can find, subscribe and tune into whatever their interests and curiosities desire.

Podcasting today allows us to connect on a global level. We can explore, compare, challenge and expand our mind, heart and human experience.

Connecting with others, especially on an auditory level, provides one of the most intimate mediums of communication. Podcasting opens up our imagination and senses to the human voice where ideas, rather than prescribed and sometimes biased images, prevail. Listening to podcasts helps us all to make connections with our inner thoughts and beliefs. We’re invited to broaden, rather than limit, our ability to intake, synthesize and consider something new.

Through podcasting, we glean from others what we might never otherwise know. We gain new skills and insights, explore broader points of view, challenge our own dogmas and, at best, discover a world both rich in diversity and unifying to the human condition. In many cases, we can even make some new friends along the way.

In the past few years, I’ve added “Living Happy – Inside Out” podcasts to my videos, books and blogs. For me, podcasting is one of the most satisfying and personal ways to communicate! I can share inspired questions and thoughts that arise naturally from my day. Using the simplicity of my iPhone recorder, I convey reflective questions and personal stories with an inflection and other subtleties that don’t always translate in written form.

That auditory magic creates unexpected bonds between podcasters and listeners alike. I imagine myself speaking to just one person, and I know that each listener feels that connection.

Whether you’re a curious seeker of something fascinating, new or even wonderfully familiar to listen to — or you’re someone with information, entertainment or ideas to share with others — be sure to make today’s International Podcast Day one to join in and celebrate.

Maura is a  Speaker on Influence, Leadership and Emotional Intelligence

Subscribe to her Podcasts on iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play

Visit Maura’s Author page for her 2017 Art of Happiness series

Enroll in her Foundations of Happiness eCourse

Follow her on Twitter | Find her on HuffPost