Design The Life You Love by Ayse Birsel | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Design The Life You Love by Ayse Birsel | Book ReviewDesign the Life You Love by Ayse Birsel
Published by Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony on October 13th 2015
Genres: Self-Help, Creativity, Motivational & Inspirational, Personal Growth, Happiness
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9781607748823

A joyful, inspirational guide to building the life you've always dreamed of, using the principles and creative process of an award-winning product designer. Life, just like a design problem, is full of constraints-time, money, age, location, and circumstances. You can’t have everything, so you have to be creative to make what you want and what you need co-exist. Design the Life You Love is a joyful, inspirational guide to building the life you’ve always wanted, using the principles and creative process of an award-winning product designer. Through four steps that reveal hidden skills and wisdom, anyone can design a life they love!
From the Trade Paperback edition.

Design The Life You Love

So, when I was offered a spot on the Design The Life You Love blog tour – I jumped a little bit with excitement. I love reading books about self improvement and creativity and going after your dreams. I then got the book in the mail and proceeded to flip through a few pages – even my boyfriend flipped through it – because I brought it to his house with me, and left it there for a week or so. THEN! Imagine my surprise when my turn for the blog tour came up and I had not even used this workbook yet. I think I had failed at designing the life I love. THEN! I went home, TODAY you guys, and dove right into Design The Life You Love.

Now, disclaimer, I am not done with this workbook yet. That’s okay. It’s not like there’s a plot for me to discuss with you all or a story. Instead, this workbook is exactly what it purports to be. Design The Life You Love: A Step By Step Guide To Building A Meaningful Future by Ayse Birsel is about allowing the reader or rather, user of the workbook the space to be creative and think outside the box so they can attain their best life. So, first the book has a bit about Birsel and her design process. It then goes on to talk about what to expect. She recommends you use this book in 20 minute doses. In fact, each section has a timer, so you know when to stop and to keep going.

The first exercise is that you take five minutes and draw something. This is to get your right brain warmed up. There are multiple pages for this, so that when you come back to the book each day there’s something for you to do to get warmed up.

Next, the book goes into deconstruction. So, what you do is look at your life and it’s most basic elements and you begin to deconstruct those elements. This goes on for several pages, until we have a sort of baseline for what the rest of the book will be about. There’s also quadrants in there. I am now on a page talking about superheroes and qualities I admire, which I thought was a good stopping point for today.

Here’s my initial thoughts:

  • I love the creative draw whatever you want warm up.
  • Deconstructing my entire life and different elements confuses me. I just ended up for my super deconstructed section writing a list of my goals, the different types of goals, obstacles, and more subcategories. I am not sure if I am doing it right, but I figured that maybe if I stopped worrying, I would eventually get the hang of it.
  • I like the space this book provides for doing the drawing right in there.
  • I liked the font that was used – it’s different and creative.
  • I also love that each activity has a different time slot.
  • In doing the deconstructing, I did realize that I am waiting arbitrarily for one of my goals, and honestly, I could probably begin on it a little sooner than expected — after the holiday season instead of waiting all the way until March.
  • This really does make me feel more creative.
  • I have not designed the perfect life yet, so FYI your results won’t happen in an hour.
  • I look forward to using Design The Life You Love until I have completed it.

Giveaway: 2 Finished Copies of DESIGN THE LIFE YOU LOVE (US Only)

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. This sounds like such a fun book! Thanks for sharing!!

  2. April, looks like a fab book! It would be great if you added your review to the Books You Loved: November collection over at Carole’s Chatter. Cheers

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