Pros: Interesting ideas that may help your improve your work-life balance
Cons: You should not take everything seriously, these things are not new.
Somehow I see B.S. and scam all over the place, its like they think that we (people) are so darn stupid that well buy any B.S. they (con artists) pull. Obviously, the field of diet supplements and self-help is eroded with such people all over the place. Look at Trudeu with his Natural Cures. This poor guy is no longer allowed to do infomercials and spent time in jail, but still makes millions! Same story with Mr. Ferriss: he is a founder of dietary supplement company that sells brain boosting pills (does not work) and he is now also a writer and self-helper
I am deeply upset by this book. My friend strongly recommended it to me and he claimed it will open a "whole new world of ideas for me" In reality the book (like any self-help book) is a collection of well-known ideas obvious to any thinking homo sapience. The only thing that Mr. Ferriss did was to put them together in a single place
The brief digest of the book is as follows: You do not have to work hard in order to enjoy life, in fact working hard impedes your life enjoyment dramatically. What a great idea! How come I did not think about it? The point Tim makes is that you can do things a lot more efficiently and save a lot of time and MAKE MORE MONEY! Wow! Before I go into the details, it is worth asking a question why Mr. Ferriss thinks that this works? Apparently he is one big success story.
Tim claims that he started making $40K a year working 12 hr a day and now he makes $40K a month and does 1/10 of the job spending time in Tokyo and Europe. I did a fact check it is all true! Does that mean anyone can do that? Not exactly read the fine print. Tim finished Princeton. HE FINISHED PRINCETON AND MADE $40,000 A YEAR! Thats a whole lot of an achievement! I wonder how many Princeton graduates make less than that. Then (after 4 years) Tim opened a stat-up company that sold dietary supplements big deal, many of MIT/Harvard/Princeton graduates do that. He even admits that he worked 7 days a week that time. Sounds like a good deal, right? Can you do that? Yep! Go to Princeton and youll get rich. Guess what, Tim, thats not a new idea! Average salary of Harvard/Yale/MIT/Princeton graduates is in fact higher than average salary over the US.
Basically we talk about a guy who is damn smart, went to Princeton and made a start-up company He makes 40*12=$480K a year big deal! If I were to make that much a year, I would have stopped working in three years and lived off stock trades. Anyway, back to the point.
Self Help By Tim
Tim tells us in the book how to manage your time properly you should not waste time on things that are not giving you any result, you should think about what you are doing, you should not waste your time on dumb routine at work if you could replace it with a more productive algorithm. The major point he makes is that you have to separate yourself from your workplace. The assumption is that your boss is a dummy and he/she has no idea what to do and how and instead of optimizing your performance only cares about the amount of time you spend at work. This is indeed true for many cases, but there is also a darn good reason why your boss is where he is and not on your place in many cases. Then Tim goes on by suggesting negotiating a flexible schedule to work from home YEH, RIGHT! If you are a Princeton graduate, that is a bit easier to do then when you are a construction worker! Try to outsource your functions then.
Of course there are very good points in the book: you have to enjoy life as it goes and not wait for retirement to start living. You should optimize your performance, you should enjoy what you do and take vacations as many times as possible. You do not have to be a millionaire to enjoy life like one. These are all good points and you should follow them, but you do not need Tims book to realize that. It is obvious to any thinking individual.
Tims Achievements as B.S.
To support his point and show his luxurious lifestyle, Tim gives us some facts about himself. I will simply quote Wiki page that already did a great debunking of that B.S.:
Ferriss makes a number of claims on his blog and in his book, including:
1. That he is the "First American in history to hold a Guinness World Record in tango" (substantiated).
2. That he is a Princeton University guest lecturer in High-Tech Entrepreneurship and Electrical Engineering (substantiated)[.
3. That he is "Advisor to more than 30 world record holders in professional and Olympic sports" (not substantiated).
4. That he has been a "Cage fighter in Japan, vanquisher of four world champions (MMA)" and a "National Chinese kickboxing champion" (not substantiated).
5. That he created a chain of gyms in China before being forced to close them down by local gangsters (not substantiated).
6. That he was an actor on a hit TV series in mainland China and Hong Kong (not substantiated).
In an article on his blog, Ferriss claims to have gained 34lbs of muscle in 4 weeks, with a total gym time of just 4 hours (not substantiated).
Basically the guy LIES all the way! May be he does not even make those $40K a month at all
You may consider reading this book, as there are quite a few interesting ideas and quotes there. Some valid points may indeed help you improve your work and life balance, but do not expect miracles, be yourself. You do not need to live another persons life to be happy, you are the only person who decides whether you will or will not be happy make your choice and be happy. You do not even need $40K a month for that, just love life. Ive been all over the world and make 60 flights last year making barely over $50K a year and I am still very happy.