175 episodes

How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is a podcast that celebrates the things that haven’t gone right. Every week, a new interviewee explores what their failures taught them about how to succeed better.

How To Fail With Elizabeth Day Elizabeth Day

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 187 Ratings

How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is a podcast that celebrates the things that haven’t gone right. Every week, a new interviewee explores what their failures taught them about how to succeed better.

    S16, Ep4 How To Fail: Spencer Matthews on alcoholism, the death of his brother and surviving reality TV

    S16, Ep4 How To Fail: Spencer Matthews on alcoholism, the death of his brother and surviving reality TV

    SPENCER MATTHEWS! I confess, I enjoyed this conversation SO MUCH. It's not just because I'm an unabashed viewer of Made in Chelsea from the early days.* It's also because I've watched Spencer transcend his (decidedly not great) reality TV persona to become a successful entrepreneur, broadcaster, husband and father. I've always had a soft spot for him even though I've never actually known him, partly because he's got a great sense of humour and real self-awareness. All of which makes him a delight to interview.
    He joins me to talk about his failures in reality TV, his realisation that alcohol was becoming a problem in his life, the subsumed grief he felt after his beloved older brother Mike died while climbing Everest and his own desire to pursue extreme sporting endeavours. Please listen, even if you have preconceptions. We got on so well, and I really valued his openneness - I truly felt I could ask Spencer anything: and I often did.

    *If you're also a die-hard MIC fan, I get him to talk about that iconic break-up scene with Louise by Putney Bridge. It's a riveting insight into how reality TV is made. You're welcome.

    --

    Spencer's podcast, Big Fish, is available to listen to here
    Clean Co non-alcoholic spirits are available to buy here
    The Michael Matthews Foundation, set up in memory of Spencer's late brother, is a charity which funds education projects in Africa and Asia. You can find out more, and donate, here.

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod

    Spencer Matthews @spencermatthews

    • 1 hr 3 min
    S16, Ep3 How To Fail: Yusra Mardini - how a teenage Syrian refugee became an Olympic swimmer against unimaginable odds

    S16, Ep3 How To Fail: Yusra Mardini - how a teenage Syrian refugee became an Olympic swimmer against unimaginable odds

    I can't find the right words to do enough justice to Yusra Mardini's story. I think it's best that you just listen to the episode. Suffice it to say, she's one of the most impressive people I've ever met. Yusra grew up in Damascus. When war broke out, she and her sister embarked on a perilous journey to Germany to seek asylum. En route, they nearly died when the dinghy they were using to cross the Aegean sea had an engine failure. Yusra and her sister Sara - both competitive swimmers - jumped overboard and helped to pull the boat to safety, saving all 18 people on board.
    Yusra went on to compete in the 2016 Olympics, to become the youngest ever UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador and to publish a memoir that has now been made into a Netflix movie, The Swimmers.
    Listen now to hear Yusra telling her story. It's unbelievably powerful.

    --

    The Swimmers is available to watch on Netflix

    --

    Choose Love does amazing work for refugees. If you'd like to donate or learn more, please visit their website here.

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod

    Yusra Mardini @yusramardini

    • 58 min
    S16, Ep2 How To Fail: Alex Jones on fertility, mental health and the time she locked King Charles in the toilet

    S16, Ep2 How To Fail: Alex Jones on fertility, mental health and the time she locked King Charles in the toilet

    TW: miscarriage; infertility.

    Oh Alex Jones, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways... Like many of you, I already felt I knew Alex before I met her. She is one of the most trusted and famliar faces on our TV screen as co-host of BBC's The One Show. But in person, she was EVEN lovelier than I could have imagined: warm, funny and totally genuine.
    She's currently presenting an extraordinary documentary series on the W Channel which saw her train as a fertility assistant at one of Britain's leading clinics. Making Babies is one of the most emotional - and accurate - portrayals of fertility I've ever seen.
    Alex joins me to talk about this, as well as her own experience of miscarriage. We talk about how she got fired from her first job for a number of hilarious professional errors of judgement - including the time she locked the future King in the toilet. And we discuss her self-perceived failure to understand the mental health challenges faced by loved ones, including her husband. It's such a brave and authentic conversation and I'm really grateful to her for opening up about it to me.

    --

    Alex Jones: Making Babies is being broadcast on the W channel on Thursdays at 8pm. The channel can be found on Freeview, SkyTV and Virgin Media.

    --

    Failosophy for Teens: A Handbook for When Things Go Wrong by Elizabeth Day is my first ever book for young adults is out now, available here.

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod

    Alex Jones @alexjonesthomson

    • 1 hr 8 min
    S16, Ep1 How To Fail: Rick Astley on never growing up, never giving up and how a difficult childhood shaped his success

    S16, Ep1 How To Fail: Rick Astley on never growing up, never giving up and how a difficult childhood shaped his success

    We're back for a brand new season. Well...you didn't think we were ever GONNA GIVE YOU UP did you? (See what I did there?)

    My childhood self is utterly thrilled that we get to open Season 16 with the legendary Rick Astley. The singing superstar who gained worldwide fame in the 1980s with hits such as Never Gonna Give You Up and who is now being discovered by a whole new generation thanks to the viral internet phenomenon known as Rickrolling (don't worry - I didn't know what this was either: he explains it on the pod). Now 56, Astley has 8 consecutive UK top 10 hits, more than 40 million album sales and 3 million TikTok followers to his name. Besides which, he's a thoroughly nice man.

    We talk about his difficult upbringing, his failure to grow up and his inability to give up drinking good wine. Prepare yourself for a lot of entertainment, some laughs, a side-order of self-deprecation and yes, a few tears too.

    --

    My Plan To Save The Planet, the new album by Rick Astley is out now and avaiable to order here.

    --

    Failosophy for Teens: A Handbook for When Things Go Wrong by Elizabeth Day is my first ever book for young adults and it's out TOMORROW, 5th January 2023, and available to purchase here.

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod

    Rick Astley @officialrickastley

    • 1 hr 4 min
    S15, BONUS EPISODE! How To Fail: Roman Kemp on mental health, male suicide and failing to be Batman

    S15, BONUS EPISODE! How To Fail: Roman Kemp on mental health, male suicide and failing to be Batman

    TW: discussions around suicide

    The period between Christmas and New Year can be tough for many. That's why I wanted to bring you an episode designed to help you feel less alone, where my guest talks openly about his own mental health and his desire to make others take care of theirs.
    Roman Kemp has presented the Capital FM breakfast show since 2017, attracting a weekly audience of almost six million. In August 2020, his best friend and the producer of his radio show, Joe Lyons died by suicide. Lyons’ death was deeply shocking to all who loved him, leaving Kemp bereft, angry and searching for answers. Kemp went on to present an acclaimed BBC documentary on male suicide and wrote a bestselling book, Are You Really OK? packed full of personal reflections and practical advice.
    Here, Roman talks about the impact of Joe's death, about this own mental health and destigmatising the conversation around these issues. Along the way, we chat about his failed driving test, his failed career moves and what it was like having George Michael as a godfather (pretty great, as it turns out). A moving, enlightening and ultimately uplifiting conversation. I hope you take something from it. If you've been affected by any of the issues raised in this episode, call Samaritans for free on 116 123.

    --

    Are You Really OK? by Roman Kemp is out now. The charity set up in Joe's name is here: Joe's Buddy Line

    --

    My new book for young adults, Failosophy for Teens, is a handbook for when things go wrong and is out on 5th January, available to preorder here

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod

    Roman Kemp @romankemp

    • 41 min
    🎤 How To Fail LIVE: Craig David on racism, bullying and having the courage to open his heart again

    🎤 How To Fail LIVE: Craig David on racism, bullying and having the courage to open his heart again

    All this week, I'll be dropping the recordings of our How To Fail live shows, held at Shoredtich Town Hall earlier this year.

    On our final night, we welcomed Craig David to the stage and we were treated to a beautiful, vulnerable conversation (with added singing!) Craig brought such generosity and open-heartedness to this event, both with me and with the audience. Listen to be uplifted, inspired and also to hear Craig's note-perfect rendition of Fill Me In during the Q&A.

    --

    This episode was recorded live at Shoreditch Town Hall on 8th October 2022 and sponsored by Stripe & Stare https://stripeandstare.com/

    --

    What's Your Vibe? by Craig David is out now https://www.waterstones.com/book/whats-your-vibe/craig-david/9781529109726

    --

    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted and produced by Elizabeth Day. To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    --

    Social Media:

    Elizabeth Day @elizabday

    How To Fail @howtofailpod 

    Craig David @craigdavid

    • 1 hr 36 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
187 Ratings

187 Ratings

StLambertGal ,

All Episodes Wonderful…

and the Geena Davis interview in particular!

Always. Well. Done.

kelcanada ,

Long time lover of this podcast

Rob Delaney episode made me laugh and cry. Thank you

bex.ercise ,

Very Inspiring!

Inspiring content packed with actionable insight. A must listen!

Top Podcasts In Society & Culture

Apostrophe Podcast Network
Go Goat Sports
iHeartPodcasts
Michael Hobbes & Peter Shamshiri
Glennon Doyle & Cadence13
Apostrophe Podcast Network

You Might Also Like

Elizabeth Day and Emma Reed Turrell
Fearne Cotton
Jessie Ware
Pandora Sykes
Annie Macmanus
The Guardian