The 4-Hour Workweek Book Review

The Cover of Timothy Ferriss' The Four Hour Work WeekYou need to read this book. Go to the library, bookstore, or whatever source you prefer to use. Get this book. Read it. Then read it again. If you are serious about monetizing yourself without working 40 hours/week, this book is the single greatest resource towards that end. (Other than me and my website, obviously.)

And if you’re just looking for the summary of the review, you can stop reading. But I’ll go into more detail, in case you’re interested.

Why you should read this book

Because it helps explain the whole monetizing-yourself concept
I posted a while back about resources for self-monetization fundamentals, and included The 4-Hour Workweek in that list. Timothy Ferriss is well aware that what he’s advocating is not normal. There’s a significant section on how to accept not being normal, realize that “normal” actually is really pretty awful, how much work it’s going to be, and why it’s worth the work. In fact, about half of the book has nothing at all to do with money, and instead talks about the actions and ideas that you’ll have to incorporate into your life to make this transition.

Because it’s specific
There’s still a lot of stuff you’ll have to figure out on your own, don’t get me wrong. It’s the nature of this new world — if you make the decision to be in charge of your monetization, then you have to accept that you no longer get your tasks spoon-fed to you in idiot-proof sound bytes. But each chapter ends with specific actions to take that will help you implement the ideas in that chapter.

Because it helps you build courage
I explained a while back why I focus on courage so much– because you’ll need it in many different aspects of your new, non-employment life. Ferriss is also aware of this need, and so each chapter also has “Comfort Challenges” to help you get comfortable with being uncomfortable, starting with the fairly low-risk “Look someone in the eye until they look away” and becoming progressively more scary, although no more dangerous.

Because it’s inspiring
Monetizing yourself is a lot of work. Consider the amount of work you know you’ll have to put in — finding a niche, learning new skills, implementing your plans — and consider that there are probably some things you don’t yet know about. Then consider that the amount of work you have to do in the world is 50% – 90% less than the amount of work you have to do on the inside to develop your strength, courage and tenacity to the point where you can do the “outside work”. It’s a lot of work.

The 4-Hour Workweek includes stories, ideas, and descriptions of what else you could be doing with your life, if you didn’t have to spend 2/3 of it working. Stories from Tim, stories from people he’s helped, or just ideas of things you might like to do. It can be a nice reminder when you are feeling overwhelmed and frustrated.

Read this book

That is all.

  • Sue Thomas

    Hi, Amanda,

    I picked “The 4-Hour Workweek” up at the library and am giving it a go.

    It’s hard because I just can’t relate to the author’s examples, for one thing. (Lamborgini? oh, please! A sports supplement distributorship? Blah.)

    He describes doing some things that took lots more than 4 hours per week, but they were “play” to him. I think they were work, not from the standpoint of what he wanted to do, but they were effortful though not monetizing. What he called “work” (for moneymaking) were things I wouldn’t be able to stand doing, expecially all squished in to only four hours! I think a better idea is to find monetizing work that feels like play, and do that, unsquished.

    Still, he has a lot of good ideas about self management, and the practices and comfort challenges are interesting & I may try altered versions of some of them. Also, being exposed to his examples is beneficial in noticing what I wouldn’t be able to force myself into, even for the sake of the “New Rich” lifestyle he describes. But, reading the book feels like a chore even though I know I just have to skim through and imagine what it would be like with my examples, not his.

    So, I like your take on this stuff a lot better! When will you have your book out?!