• How to Be Alive

  • A Guide to the Kind of Happiness That Helps the World
  • By: Colin Beavan
  • Narrated by: Colin Beavan
  • Length: 13 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 01-05-16
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: HarperAudio
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 (26 ratings)

Regular price: $31.93

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Publisher's Summary

The author of No Impact Man and founder of the No Impact Project returns with this trailblazing guide to living a meaningful and fulfilling life while also contributing to the well-being of our communities and the planet.
When Colin Beavan embarked upon a yearlong experiment to lead a zero net-impact existence in the middle of New York City, he had no idea what a profound effect it would have upon himself and others around him. For Colin, the project - chronicled in a book, a documentary, and an ongoing lecture series - formed the basis of a radical "lifestyle redesign" that reached beyond just environmental activism. And, in the course of his travels and lectures, he encountered scores of people who were similarly breaking from traditional ideas about work, home, and even family in order to take their futures, and the planet's, in their own hands. In the process they made a startling discovery - a happier way of life that is also having a deeply positive impact on the world.
For most of us, though, even contemplating this kind of transformation is overwhelming and confusing. In How to Be Alive, Beavan shares his insights on finding the path that's right for you. Drawing on everything from classic literature and philosophy to current science, and combining that with his own experiences alongside those of the many people he has met along the way, Colin explores a broad array of transformational lifestyle adjustments - small and large - that offer security and meaning in a world confronted by ecological crises, economic upheaval, and ongoing war and social injustice. In the process, he helps listeners embark on the quest for "good" lives of their own - lives better for both them and the planet.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
©2016 Colin Beavan (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By kdk on 02-09-16

Hugely upbeat and full of practical ideas

Where does How to Be Alive rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is one of my favorite audiobooks to date for its practical use, novel concepts and personal interest. I am glad Colin Beavan did the narration, since his own style and tone is fun and entertaining.

What was one of the most memorable moments of How to Be Alive?

If you liked No-Impact Man but were uneasy about the sacrifice of creature comforts, remember when Michelle says, "I just want to go get a baked good", then you will love this book. Colin Beavan has switched from the idea that doing good for the world involves personal sacrifice to doing good for the world by living a life that is what we want. This book is about replacing society's normal definition of success with your own definition. There is the guy who looks longingly at the $60K Mercedes thinking if only he had that, he would be successful. When he eventually gets it, he is still stuck in traffic like everyone else.

Which scene was your favorite?

I love the story about being in the class with 3rd graders where he asks them, "Who has had the experience of really, really wanting a toy and then getting it and finding out that it wasn't really that great?". One kid admits that s/he feels that way with just about every new thing.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, because of the huge range of topics in this book, I didn't want to miss out on another whole area of life, by not getting to it yet. I wanted to take in all the ideas right away and then let them sink in. I am on my second time through the audio book now, slower this time.

Any additional comments?

Wherever you are with deciding how you want to live, this book can handle it and still offer you ideas to consider that you may not have ever thought of. For things you already know you want to do (but aren't doing), it has some clever ideas on how you can start to work them into your life, also in ways you might not have seen coming.

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3 of 4 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By tdancgirl on 03-24-17

Love this book

Would you listen to How to Be Alive again? Why?

Maybe, I prefer reading it as the materials sink in more more this way.

What did you like best about this story?

I like that the author reads the book.

What about Colin Beavan’s performance did you like?

Authentic voice.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

How to Be Happy REally

Any additional comments?

The audibles comes up always a chapter behind than the actual chapter of the book. I've noticed this on a couple of audibles.

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