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An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth: What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything (2013)

by Chris Hadfield

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2,209567,044 (4.09)114
Hadfield takes readers into his years of training and space exploration to show how to make the impossible possible. He developed an unconventional philosophy at NASA: Prepare for the worst-- and enjoy every moment of it. By thinking like an astronaut, you can change the way you view life on Earth-- especially your own.… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
The parts of this book where Hadfield's humor shines through were, far and away, the best parts. The parts which were structured as a self-help/managerial approach left me cold, for the most part. While I would recommend the book to space enthusiasts, I might also counsel that they should wait for the paperback version. ( )
  Treebeard_404 | Jan 23, 2024 |
An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth is both inspirational and awe-inspiring. The way Col. Hadfield threads exciting stories of space travels and flying fighter pilots with tips on how to find happiness in the everyday makes it feel like the world’s coolest self-help book. I enjoyed it a lot. ( )
  thezenofbrutality | Jul 5, 2023 |
Life on this earth is too short to read something not enjoyed.
This book starts out with a bang then goes on and on and on after that. The stories are very redundant and not well organized. I felt like I was sitting at the knee of an old man who kept telling me stories over and over again with only slightly different twists, but with all the same "life lessons" of work hard, be a team player, learn from your mistakes while not being too hard on your self, and be competitive.
( )
  Kimberlyhi | Apr 15, 2023 |
What an extremely good outreach everyman the space program got in Chris Hadfield!

His affability belies the single-mindedness required of his job. Yet it's clear that the job also requires a lot of open-mindedness on his part to remain (or seem to) so accepting of how he could've "failed" his boyhood dream. This is the epitome of that proverb of reaching for the stars because even if you don't get there, you might get to go to the ISS anyway.

I appreciated that Hadfield acknowledged the sacrifices and support of his family in pursuit of his high pressure dream. And him realising that him being away so often is no excuse for not making an effort in everyday life and other people's special events. And really also his wife for being so sensible and independent. It really takes an entire village in this instance for one man to to achieve the dream of millions.

One more thing I appreciated is Hadfield outlining how he had to meet some space-affiliated person in a hotel lobby but they decided that it'd be better to go to their hotel room and Hadfield acquiesced, but also recognising how potentially uncomfortable it would have been if he were a woman.

Hadfield writes simply and engagingly, and does not waste the valuable currency that is everyone's interest in living in zero gravity. At once glamorising but also down-to-earth, the occupation of astronaut is laid out for an everyperson to judge, and perhaps for an everychild to aspire to. A great addition to outreach in science and space exploration in particular. ( )
  kitzyl | Feb 26, 2023 |
The title of this book makes it sound – in part – like a kind-of self-help book: “...guide to life on Earth”. But it’s really not. It is primarily a memoir about Chris Hadfield’s life as an astronaut and his three trips into space.

I really liked that it was more about his life and his trips to space (and the huge amount – years! - of preparation for it. Oh, the amount of planning is incredible – particularly focusing on (all) the worst case scenario(s). There were bits of “advice” here and there that can be taken for life in general. I just found the planning and the trips to space so interesting. (I hadn’t realized he’d also done some youtube videos, so I’ve had to take a look – very entertaining!) ( )
  LibraryCin | Dec 28, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
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Dedication
To Helene, with love. Your confidence, impetus and endless help made these dreams come true.
First words
The windows of a spaceship casually frame miracles.
Quotations
Early success is a terrible teacher. You're essentially being rewarded for a lack of preparation, so when you find yourself in a situation where you must prepare, you can't do it. You don't know how.
Over the years, I've realized that in any new situation, whether it involves an elevator or a rocket ship, you will almost certainly be viewed in one of three ways. As a minus one: actively harmful, someone who creates problems. Or as a zero: your impact is neutral and doesn't tip the balance one way or the other. Or you'll be seen as a plus one: someone who actively adds value.
If you start thinking that only your biggest and shiniest moments count, you're setting yourself up to feel like a failure most of the time.
[Astronauts] run the gamut from devout to atheist, but whatever the personal belief system, space flight tends to reinforce it.
There is no situation so bad that you can't make it worse.
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Hadfield takes readers into his years of training and space exploration to show how to make the impossible possible. He developed an unconventional philosophy at NASA: Prepare for the worst-- and enjoy every moment of it. By thinking like an astronaut, you can change the way you view life on Earth-- especially your own.

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