The Earned Life

Lose Regret, Choose Fulfillment

by Marshall Goldsmith

In his new book, The Earned Life: Lose Regret, Choose Fulfillment, Marshall Goldsmith — world-renowned Executive Coach and New York Times bestselling author — offers a potent but simple approach that accommodates both our persistent need for achievement and the inescapable “stuff happens” unfairness of life.
Goldsmith implores you to avoid the Great Western Disease of “I’ll be happy when . . . .” He offers practical advice, with exercises, aimed at helping you shed the obstacles (especially the failures) of imagination that prevent you from leading a fulfilling, satisfying life.


About the Book

In The Earned Life, Marshall Goldsmith challenges your unproductive attachment to outcomes and reveals the key to living unbound by regret, by helping you connect to something greater than the isolated and fleeting achievements of careerism:

“We are living an earned life when the choices, risks, and effort we make in each moment align with an overarching purpose in our lives, regardless of the eventual outcome.”

That’s the definition of an earned life. But for many of us, that pesky final phrase is a stumbling block: “regardless of the eventual outcome.” Not being attached to the outcome goes against everything we’re taught about achievement and fulfillment in modern society.

In Goldsmith’s The Earned Life you will learn —

How to accept the present with the Every Breath Paradigm.

What is stopping you from creating your own satisfaction with life.

The internal and external factors that determine success and fulfillment.

How having no choice can lead to fulfillment.

The Action, Ambition, and Aspiration model.

Opportunity or Risk: What are you ‘over-weighting’ for?

How to find your One-Trick Genius (OTG).

The 5 Building Blocks of Discipline.

The lost art of asking for help.

How to close the gap between what you plan and what you do, with the Life Plan Review.

How to make ‘earning your life’ into a habit.

How to take the delay out of delayed gratification.

The importance of credibility and empathy in leading an earned life.

The 5 recurring themes of an earned life.

Who is it for?

The Earned Life is for anyone who thinks they’ve reached the limit of their ability to achieve fulfillment in their lives.

If you are tired of feeling that you are only as great as your last achievement, or if you are saddled with regret for opportunities lost, this book will start you on a fresh journey to living the life you know you were meant to live.

About Goldsmith

Marshall Goldsmith has been recognized as the world’s leading Executive Coach and the New York Times bestselling author of many books, including What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, Mojo, and Triggers. He received his Ph.D. from the UCLA Anderson School of Management. In his executive-coaching career, Goldsmith has advised more than 200 major CEOs and their management teams. He and his wife live in Nashville, Tennessee.

Available for preorder on

What People Are Saying about The Earned Life

“For anyone who wishes to align their efforts with a life of meaning, Marshall Goldsmith is a fabulous companion, guide, and cheerleader.”

John Dickerson

Chief Political Analyst, CBS News

Hubert Joly

former CEO, Best Buy

“Through his wonderful coaching and friendship, Marshall Goldsmith has, without a doubt, helped me become both a better leader and a happier person.”

Amy Edmonson

Professor, Harvard Business School

“The advice in this book can help you keep on achieving and, at the same time, do a better job of finding peace and happiness in the process.”

“The Earned Life is Marshall Goldsmith at his best — insightful, empathetic, and practical, all at the same time.”

Jeffrey Pfeffer

Professor, Graduate School of Business, Stanford