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Zen Habits - Handbook for Life

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  786 ratings  ·  61 reviews
The Zen Habits Handbook for Life is a compilation of Leo Babauta's best articles on living from a Zen Habits perspective. What will this book teach you to do? Basically the same things that Zen Habits aims for overall: how to simplify your life, how to live a happier life, how to be more productive with less stress, how to achieve your dreams. The book includes chapters on ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published December 31st 2008)
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Average rating 3.68  · 
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 ·  786 ratings  ·  61 reviews

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Jun 03, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Leo Babauta's blog, Zen Habits is great and there's a lot of useful stuff on there.

This book started out great but ended up just being trite. With a blog you can say 'I'm interested in this but I'll skip that. That's not for me'. The parts of this book that are about minimalism and getting things done were very interesting to me but so much of it was repetitive lists and 'inspirational' quotes that had my eyes on a near continuous roll. It starts humble and ends sanctimonious.

I would recommend
Devin Partlow
Jun 04, 2013 rated it liked it
This book had some good things in it but I expected more since it was published so recently. I really didn't read anything brand new, it was more of principles recycled from books prior to this one. I did really enjoy the conscious living section though.

I also think the book could have better organized. He repeats a lot of things, it would have been nice if we could figure out a unifying theme to tie alot of the concepts together.

If you're the type of person that loves step-by-step guides, this
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.75 rating.....While this book was not ground-breaking, it was helpful. All the ideas and points we have all heard before, but it's nice to get a reminder to renew these ideas. ...more
Isabella Janx
Jan 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is a good basic “get your sh*t together” book but honestly most of the stuff in here isn’t ground breaking. It’s basically your typical self help book with advice like “exercise, good hygiene, clear your inbox” so I dunno if you’ve heard this all before maybe this book only has redundant information. It was a good reminder of all of those things for me so I still gained value from reading it.
Ghenadie Virtos
Feb 15, 2013 rated it liked it
It's a pretty simple book, or rather a booklet. Very straightforward and rather simplistic. I skipped through it and didn't read it thoroughly because everything is as common-sensical as possible or you've surely heard it somewhere else or thought it yourself. It still might prove useful because it works as a reminder of those nice ideas we and projects or tips we had for ourself but somehow lost sight of them because of all the clutter of day to day life. I've personally took away just one tip ...more
Nov 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Fabulous! Huge fan of Leo Babauta and his blog...and just wanted to post here to spread the word for him. His blog is one of my favorites. This book is FANTASTIC for anyone who is looking to be more productive or for someone trying to make a life change/break a habit (exercise more, etc.) Super can read it in a day.
Carl Phillips
Oct 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Leo is one of my favourite simplicity authors and the Power of Less was key to setting me off on my own journey to simpler living (and eventually setting up my own blog with simplicity at it's core).

This short collection of key posts and articles come together in a handy book that serves as a reminder of much of what is truly important in life.

A great read!
Olivia Chapé
Oct 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
A nice quick & easy listen.

I feel calmer already! Fred Stella, the narrator, has a calming, yet motivating voice, which works well with this book. Leo Babauta's book is based upon his "successful" blog, "Zen Habits", which his readers requested. There are short and sweet tips that are addressed quickly. Some of his advice includes;

- Declutter your home in order to declutter your mind.
- The art of doing nothing, eg. take a hot bath.
- Practice being compassionate towards others.
- Bring focus to y
Feb 24, 2021 rated it liked it
#43 begins with "I'm not a spiritual person but..." This is a lesson learned for me. That sometimes book titles can be misleading! I definitely did not realize I was picking up a book full of common sense advice. Notwithstanding, Babauta made some great points, I particularly liked his points on compassion and conscientiousness. In addition, he spoke of a remedy for impulse buying by writing every desired purchase (outside of food and bills) on a 30-day list, and only purchasing the item after t ...more
Iulia Cretu
Jul 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Do less. This is both a happiness and productivity tip. Doing less will make you happier, because your life won’t be so hectic and filled with stress. You will have time for things that give you pleasure, for the loved ones in your life, for life itself. It’s also a productivity tip: if you focus on the essential tasks, the big ones, the ones that will give you the most return for your time, and eliminate the rest, you will actually be more productive. You’ll get fewer tasks done, but you will ...more
Jan 02, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Disappointed.. not anything different than the blog

I have enjoyed the author's blog for a couple of years now, but I was a little disappointed that the book ended up being a very clear copy/paste of blog articles (complete with typos and lists of tips with "read more here" after each which didn't link anywhere). Also, the AmAre chapters at the end were very different in tone and did not flow well with Leo's style at all. This was a gift, otherwise I would have seriously considered trying to get
Justyna Politańska
May 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Zen habits is a collection of tips on how to live well. To my satisfaction, it turned out I have already developed a number of habits that the author recommends to follow, such as doing sports, getting thigs done, spending time in a nature instead of in front of TV, leaving my life consciously. Much of the content seemed obvious to me. On the other hand, it is nice to have such advices collected in one place, memorize them and focus on those that I could make a part pf my life, making myself hap ...more
Mar 06, 2020 rated it liked it
I'm not going to say it didn't have any good advise, in fact, I think it got better as it went on. However, as was stated in the introduction, this book is collected blog posts and reads as such. The author has collected them into three sections, but there's not really a connecting thread tying them together, and a lot of information is repeated. worth skimming for things pertaining to the reader, but not something I would buy again. Especially in the first section, I felt that all the informati ...more
Jan 30, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1. You can find the nugget of truth in criticism, with a suggestion for improvement. Find the positive.

2. Thank the critic. Attitude of gratitude. Remind yourself to be humble and try to improve.

3. Detach from critics: don’t take it personal. Rise above attacks. Be positive. Ignore the insult.

4. Speak slowly: people in authority are not rushed.

5. Set a small goal that is too easy to fail.

6. Focus on solutions to improve confidence.

7. Work on small things. Work in bursts.

S. Gregory
I listened to this on Audiobook, I believe the e-book is part of the public domain and can be found for free. If you've followed my reading for a while now you'll see a lot of books like this that I enjoy. It's not that this one was less fantastic but even though it's a positive message, I'm getting used to hearing the same things over and over - this is to be expected. Overall, it's a wonderful book and I definitely enjoyed listening to it as I went for afternoon walks as a quick reminder/pick ...more
Helge Reikerås
Apr 27, 2020 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book.

It's kind of a Zen version of GTD that also covers being OK with not getting everything done and motivation for doing things.

It's got good practical advice with a "simplify" theme. I, in particular, enjoyed the chapters about motivation and simplifying.

A few drawbacks though:
- It's based off individual blog posts so not super coherent and somewhat repetitive
- It's fairly short and covers a lot. Not a deep dive at all.
Roman Mastalir
"Single tasking is new sexy" is the main idea of this book and I like it a lot. Not that good book, but really interesting topic. I quite enjoyed the first half of the book, but then it went south. The book itself is not well structured, most probably just a lot of blog posts put together. Repeating a lot. But again, the topic is quite nice, it is a good starting point for me to start a life with less stress in it. ...more
Aug 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Full of practicle advice on how to get the most out of your life. Would be especially practical for the working individual or busy person who is feeling overwhelmed. The other made big changes in his life in just a couple years and shares some of his tips which vary from getting your to do list done, eating, exercise and personal time. This books is a collection of the top posts in his blog.
Helfren Filex
Nov 29, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: self-help
Zen habit is a crucial technique to declutter and actually rest your mind after barrages of daily thoughts. The act of doing nothing has strong sense on redeeming the quietening of the mind so that it can be calm and refreshed for the next day.
Simone Pedroso
May 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
A good entry point for someone who wants to start on the self-improvement path. I don’t recommend it if you have been reading about self-improvement for a while.
Mar 28, 2020 marked it as cast-aside  ·  review of another edition
started listening to this at least 2x
did derive meaning from the beginning
listened to 22% (48' / 3h 41')
Oct 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
The book starts off like a lot of self help books I've read. It's it's towards the end the last couple of chapters that this book differs from others. And is why I'm giving it an extra star. ...more
Oct 28, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Dec 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: health-wellbeing
(Audiobook) - There are little snippets on how to Zen your life. There is a lot of unnecessary clutter that we can remove from our lives.
James Somers
Jan 05, 2021 rated it liked it
There's a lot of awesome tips here but I did feel like things were starting to get dry and repetitive A LOT. ...more
Daniel Noventa
Jan 31, 2021 rated it liked it
Expected advise.
Deepthi Nair
Mar 08, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: audible
Some areas were really good..but some were so boring I drifted off while listening to it!
Good overview of mindfulness tips from decluttering to prioritizing work tasks. Do your most important first!
Apr 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Good for a pick me up.
Stephen Heiner
Apr 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
A great "blook" (book that comes from a blog) from a man genuinely interested in sharing the message of a more thoughtful and intentional life. Leo is part of this group of people who have leveraged technology to make their lives freer, not more enslaved.

The book is entirely action oriented, full of listicles - but not the annoying buzzfeed type - the "GTD" (get things done - a phrase he uses often) type.

Around getting tasks done he has some great advice for the overwhelmed. Start with the big t
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Leo Babauta is a simplicity blogger and author. He created Zen Habits, a Top 25 blog (according to TIME magazine) with 260,000 subscribers,, and the best-selling books focus, The Power of Less, and Zen To Done.

Babauta is a former journalist of 18 years, a husband, father of six children, and in 2010 moved from Guam to San Francisco, where he leads a simple life.

He started Zen Habits to

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