82 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 howtofail

    • Books
    • 4.6 • 381 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.

    S9, Ep5 How to Fail: Ovie Soko

    S9, Ep5 How to Fail: Ovie Soko

    I'VE GOT A TEXT...MESSAGE. This week's guest is Ovie Soko, a man who entered the Love Island villa in 2019 and rapidly became iconic by uttering this phrase. But he's so much more than a reality TV star: famed for his laid-back charm and wise advice, Ovie is also a professional basketball player and a soon-to-be-published author. His debut book, You Are Dope, is out next week.
    Ovie joins me to talk about almost getting expelled from school, cheating on a girlfriend and being caught stealing from his mother. Along the way we discuss Black Lives Matter, and his experiences of being pulled over by police in America, Love Island, Nigerian families, faith, relationships, social media and what it means to channel your difference as a super-power.
    What. A. Dude.
    *
    PLEASE PRE-ORDER MY NEW BOOK, THANK YOU! Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong is available here
    *
    To celebrate the publication of Failosophy, I am doing a LIVE show at the newly Covid-secure London Palladium. It is also live-streamed online. If you'd like to buy tickets for either option, you can do so here.
    *
    You Are Dope by Ovie Soko is available for pre-order here.
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com You can buy our fantastic PODCAST MERCH here.

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Ovie Soko @oviesoko
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    • 50 min
    S9, Ep 4 How to Fail: Ruby Wax

    S9, Ep 4 How to Fail: Ruby Wax

    I've wanted to get this guest on for ages and now - hooray! - here she is: the inimitable Ruby Wax. Ruby started out as an actress at the RSC, took a side-step into comedy and had a hugely successful television career, interviewing everyone from Madonna and Imelda Marcos to the Spice Girls. But, after living with depression all her life and a series of breakdowns, she got a Masters from Oxford University in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy and is now a mental health campaigner and author.
    Ruby joins me to talk about mental health, mindfulness, job loss, how to deal with anxiety and comedy as a vehicle for truth. We chat about the influence of her late, dear friend Alan Rickman, the trauma of a difficult upbringing, the time she mortally embarrassed herself in front of Sir Paul McCartney and her spectacular failure at an audition for Saturday Night Live. Oh, and we talk about what happened when she interviewed the future President of the United States, Donald Trump, on his private jet [spoiler alert: it wasn't great].
    And if you enjoyed this episode, Ruby's new book, And Now For The Good News...From the Future With Love is out TOMORROW!
     
    *
    PLEASE PRE-ORDER MY NEW BOOK TOO, THANK YOU! Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong is available here
    *
    To celebrate the publication of Failosophy, I am doing a LIVE show at The London Palladium. It is also live-streamed online. If you'd like to buy tickets for either option, you can do so here.
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com You can buy our fantastic PODCAST MERCH here.

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Ruby Wax @rubywax
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    • 1 hr
    S9, Ep3 How to Fail: Annie Nightingale

    S9, Ep3 How to Fail: Annie Nightingale

    At the age of 80, Annie Nightingale still manages to be one of the most forward-looking and future-facing people I've ever interviewed. She is the legendary Radio 1 DJ - the first woman ever to get a job at the station and now the BBC's longest-serving presenter and a vital force in British music.
    Annie joins me to talk about confronting sexism, breaking the mould, getting the best of of interviewees and what it's like to have met everyone from David Bowie to Paul McCartney to Eminem and Jim Morrison (he didn't impress her much tbf). We also touch on her convent school education, her inability to tell a lie, her failure at A-Levels and her terrible financial planning. She is, it has to be said, a total riot.
    *
    PLEASE PRE-ORDER MY NEW BOOK! Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong is available here
    *
    To celebrate the publication of Failosophy, I am doing a LIVE show at The London Palladium. It is also live-streamed online. If you'd like to buy tickets for either option, you can do so here.
    *
    Annie Nightingale's memoir, Hey, Hi, Hello, is out now.
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Annie Nightingale @aanightingale
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    • 48 min
    S9, Ep2 How to Fail: Mohsin Zaidi

    S9, Ep2 How to Fail: Mohsin Zaidi

    Mohsin Zaidi's memoir, A Dutiful Boy, is one of the most powerful and emotive books I've read this year. It tells the story of his upbringing in a poor pocket of east London, in a devout Shia Muslim community. His family were close-knit and religiously conservative. From a young age, Mohsin knew that his sexuality was a secret he had to hide in a household where being gay was viewed as an inconceivable taboo. Despite these personal struggles, Mohsin became the first person from his comprehensive school to go to Oxford University, later becoming a leading barrister. And then he told his family the truth.
    Mohsin joins me to talk about the realities of being gay and Muslim, about what it means to love your family while keeping your truest self hidden and about how he found the strength to break through the barriers surrounding him in the search for a truly authentic life.
    Trust me, YOU WILL LOVE THIS EPISODE. Mohsin is so eloquent and interesting and sweet-natured and funny that you can't help but fall in love with him a little bit, even when he's talking about such harrowing and difficult experiences. Inspiration is a word that gets bandied around a lot, but Mohsin Zaidi is a man who is wholly worthy of it.
    *
    PLEASE PRE-ORDER MY NEW BOOK! Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong is available here
    *
    To celebrate the publication of Failosophy, I am doing a LIVE show at The London Palladium. It is also live-streamed online. If you'd like to buy tickets for either option, you can do so here.
    *
    A Dutiful Boy by Mohsin Zaidi is out now and available to buy here
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Mohsin Zaidi @mohsinzaidi_ldn
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     
     
     

    • 57 min
    S9, Ep1 How to Fail: Adam Buxton

    S9, Ep1 How to Fail: Adam Buxton

    IT'S SEASON NINE AND I FEEL FINE, BABY! And we open with a humdinger - the podcasting king, comedy legend and all-round thoroughly decent bloke that is...[drum roll + X Factor announcer voice]...ADAM BUXTON.
    Adam joins me to talk about misdirected perfectionism, dropping out of university, mid-life crises and what it means to be a parent after the death of your own. We talk about privilege, being sent to boarding school aged nine, whether he feels rivalry with his astonishingly successful friends (*coughs* Louis Theroux *coughs*) and about what makes a bad spoon. That's not a euphemism, by the way, we do literally talk about bad spoons.
    Adam is such a lovely man and it was an honour to have him on How To Fail, especially given that his podcast always charts higher than mine, the bastard. He is so funny - listen out for the anecdote involving wrapping scaffolding in multi-coloured ribbon - and he introduced me to the brilliant concept of having a mind like a sat nav, which is to say: if something doesn't go according to plan, the challenge is to find another route to the destination.
    I like that. I hope you like the episode. It's good to be back.
    *
    PLEASE PRE-ORDER MY NEW BOOK! Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong is available here
    *
    Ramble Book by Adam Buxton is out (in physical form) next week. You can pre-order it here.
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Adam Buxton IS NOT ON SOCIAL MEDIA...wow
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     

    • 1 hr 5 min
    S8, BONUS EPISODE! How to Fail: Gloria Steinem

    S8, BONUS EPISODE! How to Fail: Gloria Steinem

    GLORIA STEINEM. Gloria ACTUAL Steinem.
     
    For this very special bonus episode, I had the absolute honour of interviewing one of my all-time heroes, the feminist activist, writer and icon, Gloria Steinem. And yes, I'm still pinching myself.
     
    We talk about her failure to understand her mother, her failure to be at her father's deathbed and her failure to learn lessons quickly enough - yes, we go deep... She also talks to me about how, at the age of 86, she is joyfully outliving society's expectations of her; of how fear can often be a sign of growth (let that sink in), about how 'anger is an energy cell', about how we are 'linked not ranked', about not having children, about spending a lifetime combatting misogyny and racism and sexism and injustice, and about the counteracting forces of love and compassion and friendship which keep her going. If you've been watching the Mrs America miniseries about the battle for equality, then this is a MUST-LISTEN, even if I do say so myself.
     
    I love Steinem's work so much that I often quote her in my own - the book of How To Fail is a classic example (she's in the 'Anger' chapter) - and so to be given a chance to meet her, albeit remotely, was honestly a life highlight. She did not let me down. In fact, she exceeded my wildest expectations.
     
    Whoever said never meet your heroes clearly never met Gloria Steinem.
    *
    If you've enjoyed this season of How To Fail, you might like to join me for a livestream event I'm doing on 2nd October to mark the launch of my new book Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong You can book here
    *
    The Truth Will Set You Free, But First It Will Piss You Off, an illustrated collection of Steinem's best quotes, is out now and available to buy here.
    *
    How To Fail With Elizabeth Day is hosted by Elizabeth Day, produced by Naomi Mantin and Chris Sharp. We love hearing from you! To contact us, email howtofailpod@gmail.com

    Social Media:
    Elizabeth Day @elizabday
    Gloria Steinem @gloriasteinem
    How To Fail @howtofailpod 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    • 57 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
381 Ratings

381 Ratings

ZJW100 ,

Brilliant!

Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant podcast. Amazing guests and thoughtful intelligent questions leading to valuable insight and life lessons. Frisky brilliant. And I could listen to Elizabeth Days voice for hours..... can you binge listen a podcast?? Hmmm I think I just did!

RMJ712 ,

An International Must Listen!

I don’t know Elizabeth does it but she so genuinely empathetic with her interviewees. She asks incredibly relevant, constructive, and smart questions. I keep having this experience of wanting to know more from an interviewee and then she asks the very thing I was wondering, its honestly a superpower ! Through weeks of listening I’ve been learning that we all have our own experiences of failure. This commonality could have the power to bind us through these times of isolation and division. Thank you Elizabeth for normalizing this topic and for sharing your empathy with the world! The fan girl in me is screaming I LOVE YOU from the crowd !!

LewisKIT ,

Mohsin Zaida, what a wonderful man!!

What a wonderful podcast, Elizabeth I’m with you, I welled up many times during the podcast too!!

Mohsin Zaida your a wonderful human being, the world needs more people like you 😊 xx

Ps please can A dutiful boy be released on Audible 😁👍🏻

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