747 episodes

What does it mean to live a good life? What's the role of happiness, meaning, work, love, purpose, kindness, friendship, and more? How do status, circumstance, gender, privilege, race, identity, and more play into the quest to live your best life? These are the questions and topics we explore every week in conversation with leading voices in art, science, industry, and culture, from Brené Brown, Matthew McConaughey, & Bishop Michael Curry, to Austin Channing Brown, Glennon Doyle, Julián Castro, & hundreds of others.
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Good Life Project Jonathan Fields / Acast

    • Education
    • 4.5 • 2.6K Ratings

What does it mean to live a good life? What's the role of happiness, meaning, work, love, purpose, kindness, friendship, and more? How do status, circumstance, gender, privilege, race, identity, and more play into the quest to live your best life? These are the questions and topics we explore every week in conversation with leading voices in art, science, industry, and culture, from Brené Brown, Matthew McConaughey, & Bishop Michael Curry, to Austin Channing Brown, Glennon Doyle, Julián Castro, & hundreds of others.
See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    Jake Wesley Rogers | Embracing What Makes You Different

    Jake Wesley Rogers | Embracing What Makes You Different

    Vogue Magazine named today’s guest, Jake Wesley Rogers, Gen Z's Elton John, but truth is, he is a wildly-talented, 25-year-old singer, songwriter and performer not only dazzles audiences but also stands powerfully in an identity that belongs to no one other than himself. How a queer kid from Springfield, Missouri, went from growing up in the deep South, then studying songwriting in Nashville, TN, to eventually gracing the stages of music festivals like Lollapalooza, headlining for artists like Panic At The Disco! and Ben Platt isn't all that of a mystery once you hear his music—and his story. 
    Jake has this unique way of creating bold, emotional music that tells the stories of his life, yet feels universal at the same time. He invites us all to feel and sing and move and, in no small way, reclaim the parts and stories in our own lives that we’ve left behind. Elton John, himself, sang Jake’s praises while he was a guest on the 300th episode of Elton's Apple Music radio show Rocket Hour, saying Rogers reminded him of himself when he started out. And, all the while, what you’ll experience in this conversation, is how deeply grounded, loving, and intentional he is with everything he does.
    In today's conversation, we dive into Jake's journey in music and life and explore some of the lyrics of his recently released six-song EP Pluto, which has been long-awaited since his signing to hit songwriter Justin Tranter's imprint of Warner Records, Facet Records, in 2020. We unpack the art of songwriting and storytelling and its ability to help us process difficult experiences and explore some interesting asides on identity, finding inspiration, his connection and love for his family, and how important it is for Rogers to keep himself centered and present as the rocket ship that has become his career as an artist takes off. 
    His EP “Pluto” is filled with passionate ballads and poetic lyrics that tell the stories of his most formative years and dealings with love of all forms—from romantic to familial to self-love. And though Jake is early in the years, he’s deeply wise, we can all learn something from his outlook not just on storytelling but on gratitude, joy, and taking life in stride. 
    You can find Jake at: Website | Instagram | Spotify
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Justin Tranter about their life in music and creativity and really finding a place of power and beauty and creative expression.
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    • 48 min
    Abby Wambach | Doing Hard Things & Falling in Love [Best Of]

    Abby Wambach | Doing Hard Things & Falling in Love [Best Of]

    For generations, Abby Wambach’s name has been synonymous with soccer. A two-time Olympic gold medalist, FIFA World Cup Champion, and the highest all-time goal scorer ever, she is an icon. But, that's not the whole story. Not by a long shot. And, funny enough, especially here in the podcast world, she’s become known for a very different story. One centered around love, advocacy, and impact.
    Retiring in 2015 at the age of 35, Abby found herself, for the first time since she was a young child, without a defining identity or path forward. The year that followed brought her to her knees, but then delivered her into her next, even more powerful season of her life. She met and married the love of her life, Glennon Doyle, (who’s been a two-time guest on this show) and became a co-parent to three amazing kids. Funny enough, and we talk about this in the conversation, the first time Abby ever heard Glennon publicly talk about her, and their then-budding relationship was on this podcast. And, as we all know now, they’d eventually team up with Glennon’s sister to launch the wildly-beloved and impactful podcast, We Can Do Hard Things.
    Abby has also redirected the same fierce effort that led her to be a world-class athlete toward becoming an activist for equality and inclusion, a champion of women, queer, and human rights. Her book, Wolfpack, and the movement and company she launched along with it, is a reclamation. It's a call to agency and community. It's a stake in the ground that defines this next, powerful leg in her journey, and her role in our collective journey together.
    We explore this powerful journey, along with many of the deeper motivations, struggles, moments of awakening, defining stories and so much more in today’s conversation.
    You can find Abby at: Website | Instagram | We Can Do Hard Things
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Glennon Doyle about becoming untamed and falling in love.
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    My New Book Sparked | My New Podcast SPARKEDVisit Our Sponsor Page For a Complete List of Vanity URLs & Discount Codes.Zapier: Workflow automation for everyone. Zapier automates your work across 4000+ app integrations, so you can focus on what matters. See for yourself why teams at Airtable, Dropbox, HubSpot, Zendesk, and thousands of other companies use Zapier every day to automate their businesses. Try Zapier for free today at zapier.com/GLP
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    • 1 hr 14 min
    Tara Westover | Educated: The Story Behind the Phenom

    Tara Westover | Educated: The Story Behind the Phenom

    If you haven't heard of Tara Westover's memoir Educated. yet, you're in for a real treat. Her massive blockbuster book recounts her time growing up in rural Idaho with a dad who viewed the outside world with deep fear and a conspiratorial bent and kept the family isolated and forbidden from pursuing public school education. Tara, who never saw the inside of a classroom until she was 17, retraces her steps from her survivalist childhood to her remarkable journey to earning her Ph.D. at Cambridge. She spent her time in Idaho working in her family's junkyard, learning about herbal medicine from her mother, a self-taught herbalist and midwife, and plotting her great escape. Ultimately, she graduated magna cum laude from Brigham Young University, and in 2014, she earned a Ph.D. in history from Trinity College, Cambridge, became a Writer in Residence at the Harvard Kennedy School, and was selected as a Senior Research Fellow there. 
    When it came time to tell her own story, Tara wrote the book she needed to write for herself. Her truth. Her story. That's it. But just as she has her own story to tell through her own lens, so does each person in her family. This reality pushes us to wonder and question how quickly society has become to put people in categories or boil their existence down to a single instance or even statement. So how do you do justice to your own narrative when the stakes are the ability to ever reconnect with your family for the rest of your life? And is it even possible? 
    In today's conversation, we explore Tara's story, but we also go deeper into her creative journey, her desire to make meaning and to write. To build her own life. And we talk about what happened leading up to the book's publication, as well as how that moment affected her in ways she could've never seen coming and the conflict between being loyal to her family and being loyal to herself. We explore how the ensuing years have led her into a new phase of self-discovery and revelation, in part, because of the stunning global success of the book and also the near-overnight exposure of her and her story to millions of people around the world.
    So like I said in the beginning if you've never heard of this book before —and even if you have— you're in for a real treat today. 
    You can find Tara at: Website | Instagram
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Elizabeth Gilbert about the power and also concerns that come from writing your truth, then sharing it.
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    • 58 min
    Jenna Kutcher | How “Are” You? No, Really.

    Jenna Kutcher | How “Are” You? No, Really.

    When's the last time you've answered the question, "How are you?" honestly? 
    Whether small talk is a good thing, a bad thing or just a thing is a matter of passionate debate. But, the bigger issue is - when it is time to get real. Both with other people, and also with ourselves? And what are we losing, what parts of ourselves, our relationships, our lives, are we forsaking when we hide behind the facade of social propriety? 
    There comes a time when it's crucial to move beyond the surface level if we want to invite deeper and more fulfilled connections into our lives and find a community that will support and uplift us. So today, I'm joined by Jenna Kutcher to talk more about this idea of diving deeper below the surface in all parts of life to spark meaningful connections and, ultimately, a more authentic and rich life. 
    Jenna Kutcher is a born-and-raised Minnesota wife, mom, and wildly-successful educational entrepreneur who aims for two things daily that I can totally respect: helping others wake up to life and staying in comfy pants. After leaving a mainstream, yet largely life-sucking career that was a complete misfit for her, she found her way into art, photography, and eventually creative entrepreneurship. And, she began to realize, life is just so much bigger than she imagined, and success was not what she’s always been told. 
    And, as is her bent, the minute she learns something she loves to share, so she founded and hosts the now top-rated The Goal Digger podcast, where Jenna’s helped thousands redefine success and chase dreams through her decade-long work as a leading online educator. Her first book, How Are You Really?: Living Your Truth One Answer At A Time, is this deeply open guidebook to being alive that's chocked full of both provocative invitations to rethink life, as well as detailed guidance to lead you forward in a way that moves closer to your heartbeat, your people, and the good life that awaits you.
    There are too many fascinating nuggets that touch on so many elements of living a good life throughout this conversation, like the importance of asking for help, how to navigate change in life and business while remaining grounded, and the difference asking that age-old question with a simple tweak, "How are you, really?" could make in all our relationships. So if you're on a mission to own your life rather than the other way around and feel more alive, good things are in store for you in this chat with Jenna. 
    You can find Jenna at: Website | Instagram
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Amanda Palmer about being open, vulnerable, and real.
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    My New Book Sparked | My New Podcast SPARKEDVisit Our Sponsor Page For a Complete List of Vanity URLs & Discount Codes.AquaTruAir Doctor
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    • 1 hr 8 min
    Florence Williams | What Heartbreak Does to Your Body (and what to do about it)

    Florence Williams | What Heartbreak Does to Your Body (and what to do about it)

    Heartbreak. We all experience it. It’s a horrible feeling, but can it actually, literally, break your heart, along with the other organs and systems in your body? Turns out, the answer is yes. It attacks not just your psychology - your state of mind - but also your physiology; everything from your brain to your cardiovascular, endocrine, immune system, and beyond. It can ravage both body and mind. And, it also turns out, there are things you can do to not only mend your broken heart emotionally but also rebuild your health after it’s taken a major hit.
    That’s where we’re going with my guest today, acclaimed science journalist, Florence Williams. Her book The Nature Fix was an Audible bestseller. She is a contributing editor at Outside Magazine and has written for the New York Times, National Geographic, and many other publications. But, that’s not what kicked off her interest in heartbreak and what it does to us. 
    For Florence, it was personal. After her decades-long marriage ended, she found herself, not surprisingly, devastated. Not just emotionally, though, but also physically. Ill. Her body and her health started falling apart. And as she began to pick up the pieces, her science journalist’s brain also started wondering how emotional heartbreak was connected to the rash of physical symptoms and illness that had seemed to take over her body. She wondered if there was science behind if and, also, what could be done about it. That curiosity set in motion a quest that led her deep into the rapidly-evolving science of heartbreak, and also to the tools and strategies that culminated in her book Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey.
    You can find Florence at: Website | Instagram | Heartbreak Audiobook
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Frank Lipman about how inseparable the mind and body are when it comes to health.
    Check out our offerings & partners: 
    My New Book Sparked | My New Podcast SPARKEDVisit Our Sponsor Page For a Complete List of Vanity URLs & Discount Codes.Indeed: Connect with your talent audience so you can make more quality hires faster. Sign up for Indeed now and get a $75 credit toward your first sponsored job. Plus, earn up to $500 extra in sponsored job credits with Indeed's Virtual Interviews. Visit Indeed.com/GOODLIFE to learn more. Terms and conditions apply. Need to hire? You need Indeed.Peloton: Right now is the perfect time to try out Peloton. The Peloton Bike+ is now $500 less, its best price yet! Including FREE delivery and setup. And there are more game-changing prices available on the original Peloton Bike and Peloton Tread. Visit onepeloton.com to learn more. 

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    • 55 min
    Terry Real | How “Me First” Culture Destroys Us (and what to do about it)

    Terry Real | How “Me First” Culture Destroys Us (and what to do about it)

    So, what if being fiercely self-reliant and individualistic was actually a terrible thing? I know, I know, sounds silly. I mean isn’t that the very thing we’re told to strive for from the youngest age? And, especially, in our culture now? 
    Problem is, living in a me-first or me-over-you world is not only destroying our personal relationships, it’s destroying us, our states of mind, and even physical wellbeing. And, intimacy, deep connectedness, even reliance on and elevating others just might be the solution to much of what ails us.
    That idea may sound strange at first, it’s hard to argue that the rise of a wildly individualistic society has also gone hand-in-hand with the destruction of social bonds, friendship, mental health and nearly every marker of health in communities as well. As humans, we are all designed to be in relationship with others to experience the positive effects of connectedness, when that breaks down, so do we. And today's guest, Terry Real is an internationally recognized family therapist, speaker, and author. His new book Us: Getting Past You and Me to Build a More Loving Relationship is a guide not just for couples, but also just for all human beings, filled with tools and advice to help anyone tap into their most collaborative and relational self. In today's conversation with Terry, he shares his story of growing up in a dysfunctional home to reveal how the techniques we've all learned to survive dysfunction as children can take a toll on our present relationships. And we explore how re-engaging with the people around us we hold most dear just may save not only those relationships, but our lives as well, and society more broadly. 
    You can find Terry at: Website | Facebook
    If you LOVED this episode you’ll also love the conversations we had with Julie and John Gottman about how to build deeper, loving relationships
    Check out our offerings & partners: 
    My New Book Sparked | My New Podcast SPARKEDVisit Our Sponsor Page For a Complete List of Vanity URLs & Discount Codes.Ka'ChavaThrive MarketRadio Headspace: Radio Headspace is a short, daily show about mindfulness, and it’s hosted by Headspace’s meditation teachers. Each episode is just a few minutes long. They cover things like how to find joy, or how to manage climate anxiety, in a mindful way. Search for Radio Headspace wherever you get your podcasts.
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    • 57 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
2.6K Ratings

2.6K Ratings

Cece LA ,

Inspiring stories! Highly recommend

I’ve been listening to this podcast for years now! I love the way Jonathan interviews his guests. So thoughtful and well done. I love learning about new books, authors, thought leaders. My dose of inspiration!

KidCoodieSick ,

Thank you 🙏

I started listening to Jonathan and The Good Life Project when I was living in a small Chicago apartment 5 years ago (almost to the day).

At that point in my life I was struggling with life numbing depression. But through filling myself up with inspiring content like this podcast I set a goal to lose 20lbs and to quit drinking. I accomplished that and today I’m the happiest I’ve ever been and it continues to get better.

Not sure where I would be without listening to Jonathan and these inspiring interviews.

Thank you 🙏

Tim Woosley ,

Great Interview!

I love the fact that the podcast is called the Good Life Project! Life is an ongoing journey and it’s great to hear from so many different people on their voyage. Thanks for sharing a little light in my day!

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