Goal-Free Living


We are taught from a young age that in order to achieve great success we must set and achieve our goals. However in doing so, we become focused on where we are going rather than enjoying where we are right now. We sacrifice today in the hope that a better future will emerge, only to discover that achievement rarely leads to true joy. Goal-Free Living presents an alternative philosophy – that we can have an extraordinary life now, all without goals and detailed plans. By living for each moment, it’s possible to have a successful life and follow your passions at the same time.

This amazing book shares the personal discovery of consultant Stephen Shapiro, for whom professional success was often achieved – yet personal satisfaction remained elusive. He wanted to escape the treadmill of chasing his goals, and to find a way to make his life truly rewarding. So over ninety days, he drove 12,000 miles and interviewed 150 extraordinary people from all walks of life to learn how they lived fulfilling, happy lives. Along the way, he discovered the eight secrets to living life free from the constant pressure of goals:

  • Use a compass, not a map
  • Trust that you are never lost
  • Remember that opportunity knocks often, but sometimes softly
  • Want what you have
  • Seek out adventure
  • Become a people magnet
  • Embrace your limits
  • Remain detached

Goal-Free Living offers practical guidance on putting these valuable lessons to work in your own life every day. Take them to heart and you’ll be free of the tyranny of goals-and experience a life truly worth living.

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

You can purchase the book from Amazon.com.

What People Are Saying About Goal-Free Living

“Stephen Shapiro has written a smart, practical, and inspiring guide to leading a life of purpose and meaning. If you have only one goal this year, let it be this: read Goal-Free Living!”
Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind & Free Agent Nation

“Goal-Free Living isn’t a call for laziness, passivity, or risk mongering. Instead, his approach will help readers achieve the best kind of happenstance: taking a stance to make things happen.”
Heath Row, contributing editor and community director, Fast Company Magazine

Stephen Shapiro shows how individuals can find more joy in life while still make important contributions to society and the people around them. The insights in Goal Free Living will be valuable to anyone who feels consumed or constrained by their own goals. I have a sense that reading this book may turn out to be one of the most important things I’ve done in a long time.”
Doug Busch, Vice President and Chief technology Officer, Digital Health Group, Intel Corporation

“In this insightful, charming book Stephen Shapiro guides you to reframe the way you think about goals. This is an engaging, creative approach to discovering inner wisdom and personal fulfillment.”
– Michael J. Gelb Author, How to Think Like Leonardo DaVinci and Discover Your Genius

“Reading Goal Free Living is like jettisoning a hundred-pound pack. Suddenly, you’re racing much faster and enjoying the breeze.”
Alan Weiss, Ph.D., Author, Million Dollar Consulting

“I thought so much of Stephen Shapiro’s Goal-Free Living, that I incorporated his research into spots we are running for our ball clubs. Goals pick up where fun ends.”
Mike Veeck, Author, Fun is Good and part owner of five minor league baseball teams

“This book is a masterpiece. Get it. Read it. Live it.”
Dr. Joe Vitale, author, The Attractor Factor

“Steve is brilliantly insightful. He knows (and this book proves) that it is the pursuit of what you love, not the achievement of your goals, that will give you a joyful and passionate life.”
Marcia Wieder - America’s Dream Coach®, Author, Making Your Dreams Come True

“Stephen Shapiro powerfully shows that true success is not determined by the goals we achieve, but rather by the life we live. Goal Free Living is YOUR guide for having the life you want NOW!”
Marshall Goldsmith, author or co-editor of 19 books, including The Leader of the Future, and has been recognized in The Wall Street Journal as one of the top ten executive educators

“Despite the paradoxical title, the book’s thesis and purpose are straight forward. Although creativity cannot be forced, one must be prepared for it. Shapiro shows how being goal-free can be a catalyst for personal growth, achievement, and satisfaction.”
Al Gini, Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University Chicago, author, The Importance of Being Lazy and My Job My Self

“If you’ve ever imagined living a completely different life, this book will inspire you to take a step toward a more exciting future. Trying just one of the 8 secrets will result in a dramatic and positive shift in your perspective.”
Alan Price, author, Ready to Lead