OwlTail

Cover image of All It Takes Is A Goal

All It Takes Is A Goal

The future belongs to finishers. Join New York Times Bestselling author and speaker Jon Acuff as he explores the best tips, tricks and techniques to getting from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow. All it takes is a goal.

Popular episodes

All episodes

Read more

The future belongs to finishers. Join New York Times Bestselling author and speaker Jon Acuff as he explores the best tips, tricks and techniques to getting from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow. All it takes is a goal.

ATG 92: The Unexpected Gift of Rejection - My wildly hopeful conversation with Nona Jones

Podcast cover
Read more

Is it really possible to change the future or do our pasts dictate who we are destined to become? Nona Jones would tell you that the future is yours to shape, no matter the circumstances you come from. She had the sort of childhood no one expects good things to come from, so she flipped the script on the world.

Nona is now an international speaker, preacher, author, and the head of global faith-based partnerships at Facebook. She is a graduate of the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program and was named one of Essence Magazine’s “Under 40 Women to Watch.” She most recently served as Secretary of the Florida Juvenile Justice Association Board of Directors and on the Georgia Statewide Human Trafficking Task Force. Presently she leads a church with her husband in Gainesville, Florida. Nona joined me for an incredible conversation about rejection, redemption, and becoming who you were meant to be despite what you have to overcome.

Nona's Book List:
Essentialism by Greg McKeown
Deep Work by Cal Newport

In This Episode:
Buy a copy of Nona’s new book!
Listen to Nona’s podcast
Visit Nona’s Website
Follow Nona on social: @nonanotnora.
Grab your copy of the 2023 Finish Calendar!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Sep 26 2022

38mins

Play

ATG 91: 3 Signs of Imposter Syndrome

Podcast cover
Read more

Right now, I’m at the beginning of a three-year writing process for my next book that’s all about bravery. Why bravery? Because after nearly 50 years I discovered that every win, every triumph, and every victory in my life happened in the moments I chose to weather the storms caused by my fears. Every goal you want to achieve is on the other side of a brave decision. That’s why this week we’re talking about a fear that keeps a lot of people from ever starting their dreams: imposter syndrome. We’ll cover why it’s such an insidious force and what you can do to overcome it in the episode.

In This Episode:
Sign up for the 5 Brave Days Challenge!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Sep 19 2022

29mins

Play

ATG 90: Curate and Crank Up Your New Playlist with my two favorite authors (my daughters!)

Podcast cover
Read more

TikToks and Instagram reels go viral when they have the right soundtrack. Your thoughts are the same way. The loudest, catchiest, most played thoughts are the ones that shape the way we view ourselves, the actions we take, and the results that come from those actions. But what if the thoughts we listen to the most are broken soundtracks? What if the loudest thoughts we have about ourselves aren’t even true?

As adults, we’ve all picked up bad soundtracks along the way, but the students in our lives are still curating their playlists for the first time. They’re still writing the soundtracks they’re going to listen to for the rest of their lives. That's why I wrote my new book, Your New Playlist with my teenage daughters, L.E. and McRae. They join me in a very special episode of All it Takes is a Goal to talk about why mindset is so powerful, how to ditch broken soundtracks, and how to build new ones that will help you overcome challenges and achieve your goals.

In This Episode:
Pre-order Jon's new book, "Your New Playlist" and read the first two chapters!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Sep 12 2022

40mins

Play

ATG 89: Life is an emergency; live accordingly - my awe-inspiring conversation with Eric “ET” Thomas

Podcast cover
Read more

Have you ever felt like you’ve hit a wall in your life? Like you don’t know exactly what you want to do, but you know what you’re doing isn’t it? Eric Thomas grew up in a world that was against him from the start in a lot of ways. At a young age, he found himself homeless and living with no real direction until he realized he had to make a change.

Today, he’s known as ET “The Hip Hop Preacher,” and is a world-renowned speaker, educator, pastor, and audible.com Audie Awards Finalist. He’s taken the world by storm with his creative, common-sense approach to living a successful, satisfying professional and personal life. He joined me for an incredible conversation that will have you ready to run through your walls and break the glass ceilings in your life.

ET Book List:
The Bible
Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
Daily Motivation for African-American Success by Dennis Kimbro
Chicken Soup for the Soul (Any)
The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason
The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino
The Autobiography of Malcolm X

In This Episode:
Check out ET's book!
Watch Eric’s “How Bad Do You Want It?” speech
Listen to Eric’s podcast
Follow Eric online: Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter

Pre-order Jon's new book, "Your New Playlist" and read the first two chapters!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Sep 05 2022

1hr 16mins

Play

ATG 88: Overcome Resistance and Embrace Restraint: The secret formula to achieving your dreams with THE Steven Pressfield

Podcast cover
Read more

Why is following a dream so hard sometimes? You know what you want, and you know what you need to do to achieve it, so why hasn’t it happened yet?

I’m thrilled to have my long-time mentor, Steven Pressfield, join me for an episode all about doing the thing we all want - to live out our dreams. Steven is the bestselling author of countless screenplays, novels, and nonfiction books, including Gates of Fire, Turning Pro, and one of my all-time favorites, The War of Art. In this episode, we talk about taking consistent steps toward your dream, quieting distractions, Obi-Wan Kenobi moments, King Kong, and so much more!

Steven Pressfield Book List:
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
The Moviegoer by Walker Percy
Tropic of Capricorn by Henry Miller
History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides

In This Episode:
Buy a copy of Steven’s new book!
Visit Steven’s website.
Follow Steven on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Pre-order Jon's new book, "Your New Playlist" and read the first two chapters!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Aug 29 2022

1hr 4mins

Play

ATG 87: Interruptions, overwhelming tasks, long goals, and day jobs: How to win 4 situations everyone faces

Podcast cover
Read more

There are endless distractions that are constantly taking us away from the things we try to accomplish. Some are innocent, like when your kids need help with a school project. Others are more frustrating, like a job that constantly cuts into your personal time.

Regardless of what the distraction is, it makes moving forward with your goals harder. That’s why in this episode, I’m teaching you how to overcome four of the most common things that get in the way of progress: interruptions, overwhelming tasks, long goals, and day jobs. By the end of this episode, you’ll have the tools to keep moving toward the finish line of your goal even when everything is trying to get in the way.

In This Episode:
Pre-order "Your New Playlist" and read the first two chapters!

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Aug 22 2022

29mins

Play

ATG 86: How to get the cheat codes from people smarter than you - Part 2

Podcast cover
Read more

The number one thing a mentor can give you is cheat codes. That phrase may sound too good to be true, but it isn’t. Great mentors have great cheat codes, and cheat codes make accomplishing your goal a lot easier.

In Part 2 of this special micro-series, we’re wrapping up our conversation on establishing and maintaining a thriving mentor relationship. I’ll share the questions to ask your mentors, what to do if you’re having a hard time finding a mentor where you live, and most importantly, how to accelerate the goals you’re working toward with your mentor.

In This Episode:
Part 1 of this Mentor Series
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Aug 15 2022

21mins

Play

ATG 85: How to build your own time machine, aka find a mentor - Part 1

Podcast cover
Read more

Mentors are like time machines. They’ve been to the future you want, and if you ask them, they’ll tell you how to get there too. In this special two-part micro-series, we’re talking about how to find a mentor, how to maximize the relationship, and how to marry your goals with their expertise. Tune in to learn about the qualities every mentor needs, your responsibilities in the relationship, how to ask a potential mentor to partner with you, and so much more. By the end of this episode, you’ll join the league of time travelers that are shaving entire years off their biggest goals.

In This Episode:
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Aug 08 2022

28mins

Play

ATG 84: The 4 Mistakes Public Speakers Make & How You Can Avoid Them

Podcast cover
Read more

Welcome to our final week of Summer School! This week, we’re talking about what I think is the best job in the world, public speaking. I know some of you shuddered just thinking about getting on a stage to talk to people, but before you freak out, hear me out.

You may not have any aspiration to be a professional public speaker (but if you do, you’re going to LOVE this episode), but there will be times in life when you have to communicate your ideas to a group of people. That could be in a team meeting at work, on a Zoom call with a client, or with your family and friends. No matter if you’re speaking to 5 people or 500, I want you to feel confident and maybe even excited, so this week, I’m going to share 4 mistakes to avoid so you can crush your communication every time.

Summer School Series:
Week 1: 8 wicked easy ways to charge more for your side hustle
Week 2: 5 stupid simple steps to jumpstart a healthier life
Week 3: 5 steps I use to write New York Times Bestsellers

In This Episode:
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Aug 01 2022

30mins

Play

ATG 83: 5 Steps I Use to Write New York Times Bestsellers

Podcast cover
Read more

Welcome to Week 3 of the Summer School series! This week we’re talking about the five steps I use to write New York Times Bestselling Books. We’ll discuss the common pitfalls most aspiring authors make, the paradoxes of self-publishing, the exact process I use to create my drafts, and so much more! If you want to write a book, you’re going to love this episode.

Summer School Series:
Week 1: 8 wicked easy ways to charge more for your side hustle
Week 2: 5 stupid simple steps to jumpstart a healthier life

In This Episode:
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jul 25 2022

32mins

Play

ATG 82: 5 stupid simple steps to jumpstart a healthier life

Podcast cover
Read more

People constantly come up to me and say, “Wow, Jon, you are so tall and fit…how do you do it?” OK, that hasn't happened yet, but I've started doing CrossFit and I'm pretty sure that exercise makes you taller so we'll see.

What people do know about me is that I’m a goal nerd and avid runner that’s crushed a lot of my fitness-related goals. That’s why in week 2 of our special Summer School series I’m going to teach you a few easy ways you can live a healthier life and reach any health goal you have (I promise it doesn’t involve the tr**dm*ll). I hope you brought an apple because class is about to begin.

Summer School Series:
Week 1: 8 wicked easy ways to charge more for your side hustle

In This Episode:
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jul 18 2022

24mins

Play

ATG 81: 8 wicked easy ways to charge more for your side hustle

Podcast cover
Read more

Class is in session! Welcome to week one of my special Summer School series. I 'm constantly asked about four different types of goals: side hustles, health, writing and speaking. So, for the next 4 weeks I am going to answer 1 question for each of these topics! Up first, side hustles! Why? Because roughly 90% of the entrepreneurs I interact with don’t charge enough money for what they do. Of that 90%, the majority of them are not just undercharging, they’re grossly undercharging. I would argue that not charging enough is one of the biggest problems facing entrepreneurs right now. That’s why I’m giving you eight ways you can charge more for your side hustle! Try them out and I guarantee you'll start to see the results you want.

In This Episode:
Listen to Episode 15 of this podcast – Say these 3 words if someone asks you to work for free
Read Derek Siver’s book, “Anything You Want
Check out my Finish Course

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jul 11 2022

23mins

Play

ATG 80: How to change your crazy uncle’s mind about politics - My conversation with David McRaney

Podcast cover
Read more

Can people actually change their minds? Why does anyone do anything? And what do genies (yes, like the wish-granting-guys-that-live-in-lamps) have to do with it?

David McRaney is an author, journalist, lecturer, and the creator of the blog You Are Not So Smart, which became an internationally bestselling book, later followed by You Are Now Less Dumb. David currently hosts the popular You Are Not So Smart podcast and speaks internationally about irrational thinking and delusion. He joins me for an unforgettable conversation about opening a pet store after a life-altering car crash, the truth about people with off-the-chart IQs, the origin of birthday parties, and so much more. For more from David, check out his latest book, How Minds Change: The Surprising Science of Belief, Opinion, and Persuasion.

In This Episode:
Visit David’s website
Listen to David’s podcast, You're Not So Smart

David McRaney Book List
Hyperion by Dan Simmons
Rendevous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke
Dune by Frank Herbert

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jul 04 2022

1hr 2mins

Play

ATG 79: Unoptional Joy - Why prioritizing your happiness is crucial to your success with Valorie Burton

Podcast cover
Read more

So many of the messages we receive in the world try to convince us that success is the key to happiness. But what if that's backward? America's Life Coach, Valorie Burton, argues that happiness is actually the key to the success we crave, and she's got the research to back it up.

Valorie is a bestselling author of 13 books, podcast host, and the founder of the Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute (CaPP). She's served clients all over the world through her speaking, coaching, and writing. She joins me for a conversation on prioritizing your happiness, positive psychology, and resilience strategies that will help you achieve your goals. For more from Valorie, check out her latest book, Let Go of the Guilt!

In This Episode:
Visit Valorie’s website for more information
Learn more about the Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute

Julie Solomon Book List:
Authentic Happiness by Martin E. P. Seligman
Learned Optimism by Martin E. P. Seligman
The Five Levels of Leadership by John Maxwell
We Should All Be Millionaires by Rachel Rodgers

Get my 5 Things to Shout About Newsletter every Friday straight to your inbox!
Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jun 27 2022

46mins

Play

ATG 78: Master the art of your craft - My conversation with comedian, Dustin Nickerson

Podcast cover
Read more

Anyone who has decided to turn their hobby or passion into a career eventually comes to the the realization that what they love doing isn’t just about having fun anymore. That means you have to learn how to excel at it and monetize it, or as Dustin Nickerson would say, “Everyone likes to drive the car, but somebody has to work on it, right?”

Dustin is an author, podcaster, and professional comedian who performs in over 300 shows a year. He’s appeared on Comedy Central, Hulu, Fox, and Netflix alongside Kevin Hart. Dustin joins me for a hilarious conversation about honing your craft, doing the parts of the job that no one likes, the struggles of social media algorithms, and so much more! For more from Dustin, check out his debut book How to Be Married (to Melissa): A Hilarious Guide to a Happier, One-of-a-Kind Marriage.

In This Episode:
Visit Dustin’s website for more info on tours and projects
Buy a copy of Dustin’s new book: How to be Married (to Melissa) 
Listen to Dustin and Melissa’s Podcast

Dustin Nickerson's Book (and Comedian) List:
Books 1-4:
Quitter by Jon Acuff
Comedians:
Michael Longfellow
Michelle Wolf
Brian Simpson
John Mulaney

Get my 5 Things to Shout About Newsletter every Friday straight to your inbox!
Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jun 20 2022

1hr 1min

Play

ATG 77: The superpower we all have but are terrified to use: Influence - My conversation with Julie Solomon

Podcast cover
Read more

Whether we admit it or not, we all have something to say. We all have dreams. We’re all trying to build something, achieve something, or communicate something, so why do we constantly sell ourselves short? Why is being honest about what we want and going for it so hard? Julie Solomon sees this happen every day.

Julie is a business coach, speaker, host of the top-rated The Influencer Podcast, and author. She’s spent over a decade helping people align their purpose with their vision to find out what makes them shine while confidently sharing it with the world. She joins me for a conversation about overcoming self-sabotage, confronting the uncomfortable truths about ourselves, healing from messy origin stories, and so much more!

In This Episode:
Check out Julie’s website for more info!
Grab her book, Get What You Want: How to Go From Unseen to Unstoppable.
Take a listen to Julie’s Podcast, The Influencer Podcast

Julie Solomon Book List
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
What We Wish Were True by Tallu Schuyler Quinn
$100M Offers by Alex Hormozi

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jun 13 2022

45mins

Play

ATG 76: How to improve the 35,000 choices you make every day – My conversation with Mark Miller

Podcast cover
Read more

According to psychologists, we make nearly 35,000 decisions in a day. Some are nearly unconscious and automatic, but others have the power to shape our lives. That can feel like a lot of pressure, especially if you’re in a position of leadership. That’s why Mark Miller is on a mission to take the stress out of making choices - no matter how big or small.

Mark Miller is a business leader, best-selling author, and longtime Chick-Fil-A employee. Mark started his Chick-fil-A career working as an hourly team member in 1977. Today, he’s the Vice President of High-Performance Leadership. He began writing almost twenty years ago, and just released his 10th book, Smart Leadership. He joins me for a conversation about becoming an effective leader with impact and influence, which Chick-FIl-A sauce reigns superior, and so much more!

In This Episode:
Visit Mark Miller’s website
Buy a copy of Mark’s new book "Smart Leadership: Four Simple Choices to Scale Your Impact"
Give Mark a call or text 678-612-8441

Mark Miller Book List:
The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker
High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard
Necessary Endings by Dr. Henry Cloud
Insanely Simple by Ken Segall

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jun 06 2022

45mins

Play

ATG 75: Go All In: How to quit your job to follow your dreams - my conversation with Tim Schurrer

Podcast cover
Read more

We’ve all daydreamed about quitting our 9-5 to pursue our dream job - opening a beachside bookstore, launching a clothing line, buying a bed and breakfast in New England - but what does it actually take to leave your job and make a plan to move forward?

Tim Schurrer knows because he did it not that long ago. Tim was the right hand to Donald Miller for almost a decade as COO of StoryBrand and previously worked at TOMS Shoes and at Apple. When he realized he had dreams to become an author, he eventually quit the job he loved so that he could go all in. He joins me for a conversation about making the map from your day job to your dream job, creating a runway for your transition, and the brass tacks of what chasing your dream really entails. For more from Tim, check out his book that started it all, The Secret Society of Success: Stop Chasing the Spotlight and Learn to Enjoy Your Work (and Life) Again.

In This Episode:
Visit Tim Schurrer’s website
Discover how to enjoy your work (and life) again when you order Tim’s new book, The Secret Society of Success

Tim Schurrer Book List:
A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller
Taking People with You by David Novak
Soundtracks by Jon Acuff
The Alchemist by Paul Coelho

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

May 30 2022

49mins

Play

ATG 74: Navigate the Wild Wild West of side hustles like a pro with Joshua Becker

Podcast cover
Read more

 How do you transition from hobby to full-time side hustle? Nobody knows that better than my guest Joshua Becker.

Joshua is the author of "Things That Matter: Overcoming Distractions to Pursue a More Meaningful Life,” the bestselling author of "The More of Less", "The Minimalist Home", and the founder of Becoming Minimalist. He joins me for a conversation about leaving his job to pursue writing, the hard truths every side hustler needs to hear, and ways to make your entrepreneurial journey smoother.

In This Episode:
Check out Joshua's website
Buy a copy of Joshua’s new book, “Things that matter

Joshua Becker's Book List:
How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie
The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino
Money, Possessions and Eternity by Randy Alcorn

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

May 23 2022

49mins

Play

ATG 73: Stop trying to be Ideal You and grow Actual You – My conversation with Marshall Goldsmith

Podcast cover
Read more

We all have a version of ourselves we want to be, but can we actually become the ideal version of ourselves? And is that really necessary?

Over the course of his nearly 40-year career, world-renowned executive coach and New York Times bestselling author Marshall Goldsmith has sold millions of copies of his books and coached more than 200 CEOs and their teams. He deeply understands how certain behavioral changes can help you avoid pitfalls on the way to successful careers and lives. He joins me for a conversation about how you can stack the deck in your favor and achieve your best performance in work and in life. For more from Marshall, check out his new book, The Earned Life, Lose Regret Choose Fulfillment.”

In This Episode:
Visit Marshall Goldsmith’s website for more information
Buy a copy of Marshall’s new book, The Earned Life

Marshall Goldsmith Book List:
Old Path, White Clouds by Thich That Hang
Hesselbein on Leadership by Frances Hesselbein
American Icon by Bryce G. Hoffman
What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith

Book me to speak at your event or to your team!
Check out the Finish Course
You can get more info on the Soundtracks Video Course.

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

May 16 2022

57mins

Play