Designing Your Life : How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life
by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans

Overview - #1 New York Times Bestseller

An inspiring and thought-provoking graduation gift: At last, a book that shows you how to build-- design-- a life you can thrive in, at any age or stage

Designers create worlds and solve problems using design thinking.  Read more...

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More About Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett; Dave Evans
#1 New York Times Bestseller

An inspiring and thought-provoking graduation gift: At last, a book that shows you how to build--design--a life you can thrive in, at any age or stage

Designers create worlds and solve problems using design thinking. Look around your office or home--at the tablet or smartphone you may be holding or the chair you are sitting in. Everything in our lives was designed by someone. And every design starts with a problem that a designer or team of designers seeks to solve.

In this book, Bill Burnett and Dave Evans show us how design thinking can help us create a life that is both meaningful and fulfilling, regardless of who or where we are, what we do or have done for a living, or how young or old we are. The same design thinking responsible for amazing technology, products, and spaces can be used to design and build your career and your life, a life of fulfillment and joy, constantly creative and productive, one that always holds the possibility of surprise.

"Designing Your Life walks readers through the process of building a satisfying, meaningful life by approaching the challenge the way a designer would. Experimentation. Wayfinding. Prototyping. Constant iteration. You should read the book. Everyone else will."
--Daniel Pink, bestselling author of Drive

"This is] the career book of the next decade and . . . the go-to book that is read as a rite of passage whenever someone is ready to create a life they love."
--David Kelley, Founder of IDEO

"An empowering book based on their popular class of the same name at Stanford University . . . Perhaps the book's most important lesson is that the only failure is settling for a life that makes one unhappy. With useful fact-finding exercises, an empathetic tone, and sensible advice, this book will easily earn a place among career-finding classics."
--Publishers Weekly

  • ISBN-13: 9781101875322
  • ISBN-10: 1101875321
  • Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
  • Publish Date: September 2016
  • Page Count: 272
  • Dimensions: 8.5 x 6.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.05 pounds

Related Categories

Books > Self-Help > Personal Growth - Success
Books > Business & Economics > Careers - Job Hunting

BookPage Reviews

Rearrange your priorities

It’s interesting that Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life is coming out in the fall instead of May or June. While this book would make a great gift for a recent graduate, it would also be a good read at the beginning of senior year, or any other time of transition. Anyone who practices the lessons put forth here has a lot to look forward to.

Enlarging on a popular class they teach at Stanford, professors and Silicon Valley entrepreneurs Bill Burnett and Dave Evans use principles of design, from brainstorming to prototyping, and adapt them into a way of reconsidering and then reshaping your life.

The authors make job-hunting their primary focus but emphasize that this process can be applied to any issue. Sometimes it’s a matter of reframing a problem to open up more potential solutions, while in other situations, a closer look may reveal that you’re tackling a problem that’s not actionable. If that’s the case, fear not: The authors have a simple hack, which is to accept it and move on to the parts you can act on. A series of self-evaluation exercises includes looking closely at four life categories (health, work, play and love) before designing life prototypes and field-testing them.

Some of this may be familiar to fans of What Color Is Your Parachute? or even The Secret, but Burnett and Evans bring a fresh and practical design perspective to their career advice. As the authors note, “[I]t’s impossible to predict the future. And the corollary to that thought is: once you design something, it changes the future that is possible.” This hands-on guide will get you started, but what happens next is entirely up to you.


This article was originally published in the October 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

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