This paper starts from a growing interest in the concept of concern, lived experience or “inhabiting” as part of the so-called “affective turn”. My main argument is that the notion of concern cannot be thought or understood without the concept of life. The concept of life, however, is somewhat of a taboo topic in the social sciences. I hold, nevertheless, that in order to reflect on their assumptions and to define concern for their own studies, scholars need to think about life and make a choice regarding the various approaches that can be taken. I therefore present and compare four vitalist approaches: romanticism and Lebensphilosophie, vitalism as ethos and pathos, neuroecosociality as well as vitalism as becoming.