The 4-Hour Workweek
Tim Ferriss is a lifestyle guru. He realized at a young age that he did not want to work hard all the time now in order to achieve the traditional retirement at age 65. It made no sense to him that the age when we finally have the time and money to do things is when we usually don’t have the health, but when we have the health to do exciting things we don’t have the time and money.
Because of that he went about building his perfect lifestyle by starting at the end. He knew he wanted his life to consist of a business where he wouldn’t be required to do the day-to-day, and he wanted to travel the world and experience many new things in the form of mini-retirements (each more months at a time).
Eventually Tim was able to start a multimillion-dollar company and get it automated and outsourced to the point where he could only work 4 hours if he wanted (hence the name). His main focus was on improving efficiency and focus in our personal work, as well as using outsourcing and automation to reduce the amount of individual work he needed to do to run the company. To this day Tim still lives his teachings and is consistently traveling the world and enjoying his “mini-retirements.”
This book has so many highlights and is so packed full of information that I honestly have no idea where to even begin. The 4-Hour Workweek is about a change in mindset and in enjoying every minute of life currently, instead of putting off our enjoyment to some future date. That may be the most important underlying message in any of the books I have read.
Tim focuses on very applicable solutions on how to implement the changes he recommends. The chapters on automation and on outsourcing were especially actionable. Ferriss provides many resources and websites to use to be able to accomplish all our goals and tries to simplify the amount of work we need to do to create our lifestyles. What I like the most is that he is genuinely trying to provide all the resources to help us create our own ideal lifestyles without any ulterior motives that I could pick up on.
For many/most people I personally believe that the section on productivity and deadlines will change their lives. Ferriss talks a lot about the idea of “batching” tasks together in one set timeframe. For example, checking emails for an hour on Monday mornings instead of just a few minutes each day. When we do that we all know that we will inevitably check multiple times and get distracted and our productivity. He also creates the idea of short-turnaround deadlines to help increase focus on tasks. That one thing alone I feel will make a huge difference for people who implement it, as I have seen it since I started it.
Wow, I can’t even begin to express how much this book changed the way that I think about life and work. So many times, Tim Ferriss is able to accurately describe feelings I have had that I was never able to identify. The idea of only working when most productive is something that I have thought a lot about, but unfortunately I have fallen into the trap of trying to work long hours just to work long hours and feel good about it, and this has led to decreased productivity and increased procrastination. Going along with that, his idea of establishing deadlines for ourselves and our teams that are only 48-72 hours away at most increases the urgency and the focus on one task instead of spreading ourselves between multiple ones.
This book hit home for me because one of my goals in life is to live abroad for a while and run an online business, so I read it at the exact right time when it applies directly to my goals. While reading it I got so excited about what the opportunities are and how many things I can do, and it was hard to contain it and really focus on one thing like he talks about. I know that this type of focus will either be the key to my success or to my failure in business, depending on if I stay painstakingly focused or not.
I spend way too much time on social media and checking emails, so I am going to employ the idea of batching and designate one hour for each task every week to accomplish all that I need to. This will help me stay focused and increase the urgency since there will be a countdown, thus making me work quicker than what I would usually do with these tasks.
As I said before, this book was eye-opening to me about how people can live lives that I never thought would be possible. This book is great for me as an entrepreneur, but by no means is it exclusively for entrepreneurs or people who want to start their own businesses. Ferriss talks plenty about how people who want to stay in their jobs they have now can also enjoy the benefits of this lifestyle.
This book was as much about the idea of creating freedom to pursue your passions as it was about the actual steps of reaching that level of freedom. Since everyone has passions I think this book should be one of the most-read books of all time. If you have not read it, or have not read it within the past year, I highly encourage you to click the link below and get yourself a copy. This should be a book you read each year, in my opinion, and one you should actively be marking up and taking notes about. I give The 4-Hour Workweek a solid 9/10.
Top 8 Quotes
“Most people will choose unhappiness over uncertainty.”
“What we fear doing most is usually what we most need to do.”
“A person’s success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have.”
“I’m prepared to do battle for a dream that is worth dreaming.”
“If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is, too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.”
“Focus on being productive instead of busy.”
“Many a false step was made by standing still.”
“The bottom line is that you only have the rights you fight for.”
Read this book? Have any questions or thoughts? Leave a comment below!
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