How to Live Life Your Way, Not Their Way: The 4-Hour Work Week

The 4-Hour Work Week
by Timothy Ferriss
Pub. Date: April 2007, Random House
ISBN: 9780307353139
297 Pages
Review Written: 11/10/07
Success Rating :5

Why I Read this Book: Being inspired to act inline with your dreams as opposed to others’ is invaluable to me. This book did just that. Tim is so far ahead of the crowd’s thinking. I love it!

Review :

You better slow down. Don’t dance so fast. Time is short. The music won’t last.

If you want to meet a man who has made it his mission to take the road less traveled, meet Tim Ferriss. To say his words inspire, would not give them justice. I just put the book down two minutes ago and as I finished the last page, the above line stood out to me so much that I read it again and again out loud. “You better slow down. Don’t dance so fast. Time is short. The music won’t last.”

Tim has done a service to us all who are looking for our own definition of success. For all of us who are tired of accepting others’ measures of success and goals as our own. This is a new world we live in or at least a whole new way of thinking, and Tim has harnessed it. It’s a way of thinking that I encourage all of you to adopt or at least give it fair thought.

Tim coins the phrase the “New Rich” and bases his book around this concept. The New Rich are those who have, despite great fear and lack of support from others, taken the road less traveled. And as Robert Frost so fondly says, that has made all the difference. Tim is just over thirty and has made an incredible life discovery that he has been kind enough to share. Success is not about being financially rich. It is not about getting ‘somewhere’ or doing ‘something’. The sooner you can realize that you never ‘get there’, the sooner you will be able to see things in the light as Tim and many others (including myself) have come to see them.

The New Rich are not rich from money (although they have found unique ways to have more than a comfortable living), but instead have found that being rich means being free to do what you want, knowing what it is you want, and going out and doing it. At the same time, Tim uses his book as a great guide to help us out with some fun tips to facilitate such living. These include hiring bottom-dollar virtual assistants in India and finding places in the world where one can live like a king without actually having to be one.

The New Rich are those who live a rich life. The New Rich are rich because of their experiences and their learnings, not because they slaved for years doing something that wasn’t in-line with their goals only to have a few more zeros in their bank account. Unfortunately it is not until these people have the extra zeros, that they realize those zeros have nothing to do with fulfilling their true dreams.

Tim shows us all that is possible in this world when we buck the narrow defines of success in society and go out and do what really fulfills and excites us. After all, without fulfillment and excitement, there is no success, and certainly no happiness. You may read this and believe differently, and I encourage you to think and journal that out a bit. See what you come up with over the years. I hope you are surprised.

I think one reason why I have taken such a liking to this book and why it has inspired me so, is because I see a lot of Tim in myself. In fact, while we were running our business in Sevilla, Spain, a mate of mine and I put some extensive thoughts down regarding a book we planned to write. The premise was ‘The road less traveled,’ and it looks like Tim may have beaten us to the punch. I thank him for doing so, as it should serve as a great motivator for us to continue on in our writing. For me it was easy to relate to Tim. And the wonderful thing about what he’s done with The 4-Hour Work Week is that he has made it relatable to most any potential reader. It may be hard for some of you at first, but I know one thing. All of us dream. And for that reason we can relate. Tim teaches us to dream and then to go get it. It is as simple as that. He has even created exercises to help us out.

It is for this very reason that I created and continue to add to Reading For Your Success. So much more is attainable and possible than the average (or even above average) person believes. Sometimes it takes seeing it once, twice or even a hundred times before it hits you. The most important thing is that it does indeed hit you. We are not here to live others’ dreams, goals or visions of success.

We are brought up in a society that tries to tell us what successful means, and even more detrimentally, what unsuccessful means. At the end of the day, there is only one person who can define your success. I have a pretty good feeling you know who that is. No one else can tell you what fulfills you. Do not think for a second that just because things are “as they are,” it’s a good reason to settle. Life (and success) is about taking the road you choose and when the dust settles, no one can keep you from making that choice. There is too much possibility out there to not give everything a try.

I will end with a poem, just as Tim did in his final few pages:

Slow Dance

Have you ever watched kids
On a merry-go-round?

Or listened to the rain
Slapping on the ground?

Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight?
Or gazed at the sun into the fading

You better slow down.
Don’t dance so fast.

Time is short.
The music won’t last.

Do you run through each day
On the fly?

When you ask: How are you?
Do you hear the reply?

When the day is done,
Do you lie in your bed

With the next hundred chores
Running through your head?

You’d better slow down.
Don’t dance so fast.

Time is short.
The music won’t last.

Ever told your child,
We’ll do it tomorrow?

And in your haste,
Not see his sorrow?

Ever lost touch,
Let a good friendship die

Cause you never had time
To call a say, “Hi”?

You’d better slow down.
Don’t dance so fast.

Time is short.
The music won’t last.

When you run so fast to get
You miss half the fun of getting there.

When you worry and hurry through
your day,
It is like an unopened gift thrown away.

Life is not a race.
Do take it slower.

Hear the music
Before the song is over.

–David L. Weatherford

-Reading for Your Success

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Valuable Quotes:

“Set aside a certain number of days, during which you shall be content with the scantiest and cheapest fare, with course and rough dress, saying to yourself that while: “Is this the condition that I feared?”

“It is fear of unknown outcomes that prevents us from doing what we need to do.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Tomorrow becomes never. No matter how small the task, take the first step now!”
—Tim Ferriss

“The most important actions are never comfortable.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Being busy is a form of laziness—lazy thinking and indiscriminate action.”
—Tim Ferriss

“It is amazing how someone’s IQ seems to double as soon as you give them responsibility and indicate that you trust them.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Remember profit is only profitable to the extent that you can use it. For that you need time.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Unless something is well-defined and important, no one should do it.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.”

—George Bernard Shaw

“It is far better for a man to go wrong in freedom than to go right in chains.”
—Thomas H. Huxley

“Just because something has been a lot of work or consumed a lot of time doesn’t make it productive or worthwhile.”
—Tim Ferriss

“Why not take the usual 20-30 year retirement and redistribute it throughout life instead of saving it all for the end?”
—Tim Ferriss

“To be free, to be happy and fruitful, can only be attained through sacrifice of many common but
overestimated things.”
—Robert Henri

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.”
—Steve Jobs