Review of The 4-Hour Workweek

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Rating

8 Overall

8 Applicability

9 Innovation

8 Style

Review

In his wonderful, compelling and disturbing debut, cultural phenomenon and magazine writer Tim Ferriss – also the author of The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Chef – writes like an adolescent genius. His hypnotic tone, originality and rigor grab you from the first sentence. His sheer daring is manifest in his subtitle: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich.

Readers often group Ferriss’s work with books on managing your time or realizing your dreams. Like those, his text starts by urging you to define what you really want. Yet, unlike most works in that genre, Ferriss offers his own specific definitions of aspirational terms like “new rich” and pushes you to engage in highly focused “lifestyle design.” He provides tools, like “dreamlining” to help you ground your dreams in reality. Ferriss knocks your thinking so far outside the box that you won’t remember where the box was, let alone why you ever lived in it. And yet, even as you marvel at the likely effectiveness of the techniques he pioneered to such success, you may also think, “Look at the nerve of this guy!” That nerve emerges in the pure hubris of Ferriss’s writing voice. His work is inspiring, but in a self-enclosed way. His irrepressible optimism and self-confidence should give you more confidence in yourself. Surprisingly, his attitudes function mostly to build your confidence in him. After reading about his successes, whether or not you think, “I can do this,” you probably will think, “Tim Ferriss can do anything!”

About the Author

Timothy Ferriss also wrote The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Workweek. He is a faculty member at Singularity University, based at NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley. In 2012, Newsweek magazine named him one of the top 10 “most powerful” personalities in its Digital 100 Power Index.

 

Cultural Phenomenon

And why shouldn’t you think that? Everything Ferriss touches turns to gold and only seems to increase his manic energy and self-promotion. This is Ferriss’s first book; it shot to the top of The New York Times bestseller list and is still a bestseller. His next book, The 4-Hour Body, did likewise. His most recent work, The 4-Hour Chef, is a smash hit on Amazon. He also teaches at Singularity University at the NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley. He has apparently boundless get-up-and-go and seemingly never stops taking on new tasks or learning new cuisines, languages or outdoor skills. Even if his authorial voice can become annoying, you can’t deny he has transformed every single thing he advises you to do into a well-compensated reality.

Ferriss does seem to enjoy the sound of his own voice. Like most self-help, career-guidance, ambition-realizing or how-to books, The 4-Hour Workweek is at least half as long as it needs to be. But you can’t accuse Ferriss of padding out a magazine article to book length. He operates in an entirely original mode. He has a lot to say, and much of it is helpful. The key Ferrissian element that any reader must attempt to develop in order to achieve even one-tenth of his success is not self-belief, though that wouldn’t hurt. What really matters – what can bring your life alive in the Ferriss mode – is sheer, unselfconscious shamelessness. If you can self-promote as heartily as Ferriss can and with his smiling, boundless, I’m-here-to-help energy, you can do anything.

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    Manas Pruthi 2 months ago
    This is, hands down, one of the best and most powerful books I've ever read in my life. I have recommended it to countless people. The fact that you're seeking it out says volumes about your level of self-awareness as it is and this book builds on that.
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