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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Tim Ferriss Offers How-To for Organizing Your Life

Title: 4-Hour Work Week
Author: Tim Ferriss
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Reviewer Name: Matt Lehr
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Reviewed by Matt Lehr

In the past 4 months I have read nearly 2 books per week – each pertaining to Marketing, Goals, Motivation, Entrepreneurship, and Making Money. I recommend this strategy to any motivated individual and suggest that there is no better way to truly understand yourself and develop your own ideas than starting by reading and then transitioning to writing as well.

A great place to start for any entrepreneur: “The 4-Hour Work Week” – By Timothy Ferriss

The first time read though this book I must admit that I felt Tim was rough around the edges and subscribed to some philosophies I never could take on as my own. But after reading it twice through and a third go around on CD, I have changed my stance and believe that nearly every idea and concept he presents is doable and beneficial.

Here are the main points of my interpretation of Tim Ferriss’ work:

1) The Rat Race

Is this really your life? Working hard everyday and planning for a retirement 40 years down the road. Tim offers suggestions to shake it up do some unordinary things that will make all the difference in the world. Understanding that you have the freedom to do what you want to do and go where you want to go is the hardest step for most people. Determine why it is you want something and then start to figure out how you can make it happen. Do not be afraid to reject the norm and live life differently than the rest.

2) Understand your Time

Tim explains that the goal of the “New Rich” is not just to attain more money, but the most important treasure is time. After all, how can any of us fully enjoy the money you make if we don’t have time to enjoy it or people to experience it with. Find ways to work and make money but do not sacrifice the most important opportunity which is the time to do what you want in life. Strategy’s from the book include checking email very rarely and training clients, employees, and even your boss to not rely on you as a bottleneck

3) Automate Everything

Why do something yourself when you can pay someone else to do it for you? Find a way to make money that doesn’t need your constant maintenance. My understanding of this concept is the “business owner vs. the self employed.” Business owners sit back and let others run their company while they collect the pay check, meanwhile the self-employed put in their sweat equity on an hourly basis to earn the money. Both are considered entrepreneurs, but the self employed have only eliminated their boss, but still do all the work.

Tim explains that the goal is to move towards automation – Meaning whether or not someone is sitting on a beach or sleeping, money is being made either way. He explains to take “you” out of the equation and benefit from the goal which is not only more money but more time.

4) Outsource Everything

Having someone in India do your work for you is not something left to major Nike and Coca Cola type companies of the world. Using the internet, outsourcing is available at the click of a button and can be set up by using one email.

I took this one to heart and have not looked back. Mr. Ferriss was right on and once you learn to outsource effectively it changes everything. From paying per project or low hourly wages, having someone work while you sleep is priceless. I found the best site to use (that is not mentioned in the book) is This website makes it easier than finding new friends on Facebook – the difference being for 20 bucks this friend will do your research project – and do it well.

5) Get Away

The “4-Hour Work Week” subscribes to lifestyle design and world travel. Tim teaches you how to live abroad and do it both on a budget and while you manage your business. He includes success stories of others and offers up ways to cut loose and experience it all.

You have to actually read or listen to the book to truly understand Tim’s off the wall approach and view of life. As I stated his methods are not for all. Yet I have accepted that following them in principle can work out great. Putting your own spin on his thoughts and ideas and applying it to your situation can be very beneficial. His book has been one of many that has empowered my journey. I recommend it as great pushing off point for the budding entrepreneur.

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