Goins, Writer

On Writing, Ideas, and Making a Difference

019: Andy Andrews: What a Change in Perspective Can Do for You [Podcast]

Andy Andrews headshot

In this interview, I talk with New York Times best-selling author and world-renowned speaker Andy Andrews about his new novel, The Noticer Returns.

We also talk about what it takes to tell a great story and why we all need a little more perspective.

Andy Andrews has been called “one of the most influential people in America.”

How a Daily Writing Habit Makes You a Better Person

Notebook photo

When people ask me about my writing habits and I tell them that I write every day, they sometimes reply, “Oh, I could never do that.” As if it were a choice. The truth is it’s not. Writing, for me, is more of a compulsion – something I have to do. Otherwise, I just don’t feel like myself.

The Small But Soul-Crushing Word You’re Using Every Day


I am notoriously bad at over-committing to things, at misjudging my time and packing my schedule full of tasks I can’t possibly accomplish. My wife will tell you this. So will my calendar. I am obsessed with yes.

I don’t know why I do this. Maybe it’s my people-pleasing nature, my need to be liked and accepted — some accomodation for never being the popular kid in middle school, I guess.

018: Gretchen Rubin: The Habits That Lead to Happiness [Podcast]

Man flying in the air

When asked what we want out of life, many of us respond with a simple answer: “I want to be happy.” But what we often don’t realize is what we need to actually transform our lives.

Have you ever taken a moment to clarify what being “happy” means to you? What if there were actionable steps that you could take to day to reach it? That’s the very question that sent Gretchen Rubin on her journey.

Why You Should Solve Your Own Problems: The Story of Designing My Own Blog Theme

Solve your own problem

The most important life lesson I’ve learned from the Internet is this: solve your own problems and then share the solution.

If you want to get the kind of attention your work deserves and build an audience around your words, the best strategy is to share your struggles and talk about what you did to overcome them.

016: Lewis Schiff’s Road to Success: Monetization, Innovation, & Failure [Podcast]

Photo credit: Mark Sebastian via cc

I’m often challenged to think differently about a long-held belief. It’s scary, but I experience growth every time I face the fear and rise to the challenge. In this episode of The Portfolio Life, Lewis Schiff challenges our ideas about becoming successful in our chosen careers.

The Secret to Having a Marriage That Never Goes Stale

The Secret to Having a Marriage that Never Goes Stale

After a recent life-changing trip to Italy, I called my best friend to—well, let’s just be honest, I called to brag.

We had traveled together during college, and I wanted to relive some of those memories with him, while sharing my latest experiences in Europe. After finishing telling him about the trip, he said the saddest thing I had heard in a long time.

015: Turning Obstacles into Opportunities: Counterintuitive Advice from Author Ryan Holiday [Podcast]

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Most of us think that to be a writer, we need to study writing. We imagine (or dread) going back to school to get an advanced degree in creative writing. But Ryan Holiday chose another path.

He realized that he could learn a lot more about writing and marketing books by studying at the feet of the people doing exactly what he wanted to learn.

The Most Trying Part of Living a Good Story

Sam and Frodo

I don’t know what life is like for you, but for me it can sometimes seem difficult.

There are things I want to do — aspirations and dreams I have for myself. And much to my surprise, I don’t always get to do that. So I huff and puff and through my little tantrums. And then I remember.

It’s a simple lesson I regularly preach to the choir, one I relentlessly remind other writers and communicators about all the time. And ironically, one I am terrible at practicing.

014: Is Content Really King? [Podcast]

Content Is King

Content is not king. Content is a fat, dethroned monarch, dis-empowered of his royal ability to influence. And he lost that power a long time ago. In other words, your words are not enough. I almost wish they were.

I know plenty of brilliant writers who don’t get the attention they deserve. Will their work eventually get noticed? Maybe. Some day. But why not now? Why not today? Because we’re believing a lie.