According to author Tim Ferriss, 4 hours is all you need to achieve both career and lifestyle success all at the same time!
Tim is the author of the brand-new book ‘The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich‘, and I just got done listening to an interview that he did with Yanik Silver.
Is the book a magical ticket to suddenly going from a 40-hour workweek down to a 4-hour workweek overnight? No. However, it does contain some great strategies that can certainly lead to that type of lifestyle if properly applied over the course of time, and I will discuss 3 of the big ones that I think will help my readers the most.
If you are interested in the concepts, you can pick up the book by clicking the cover logo to the right, or you can just just grab a copy right here. It’s a hardcover edition that is only $12, and I personally got more value than that just from listening to the interview!
Checking email on a very limited basis
This is one tip that I have already started implementing, and I just heard the interview a few hours ago. The basic point that Tim makes is that we all check our email WAY too often.
He does not try to say that email is not important, or that it is not a part of the growth of a business. However, he does make the valid point that constantly having access to your email provides a constant distraction as well.
Most people (including me) function best when they focus on one activity at a time, and limit the distractions whenever they are doing that activity. Although Tim recommends only checking email twice a day, I couldn’t quite bring myself to that. I’m going for 3 times each day, and during the time in between, I will not even have my email program open. No temptation! 🙂
Only doing the important tasks each day
Although this concept has been tossed around in the past, Tim takes it one step further by lining up an actual process to prove to yourself whether or not certain things need to be done.
His advice is to make a daily to-do list, as many of us already do, but to then read your list from top to bottom and pick out the single most important thing that has to happen on that list.
That item has to be SO important that even if you did nothing else that day, you would have accomplished the bare minimum to feel successful. He points out that for most people, that task is also the thing that will be most difficult for them to do, so they put it off by doing “busy work”.
By taking that most important bite right out of your daily task list immediately before you do anything else (including email), you can go through the rest of your day with a clear conscious, and start tackling the less important tasks.
This is a concept that I have struggled with in the past as I have been involved in several different small and home-based business ventures.
The idea is to pay someone else to do things that you are presently doing, but that are really not the best use of your time. For example, when I was a full-time personal trainer I made as much $60 per hour, so for me to do Internet research in order to market a new fitness product did not make much sense when I could pay someone else $10 per hour to do that type of work.
The Internet is full of people who work at home and are looking for those types of opportunities, and they are usually willing to work for very reasonable rates. There are dozens of websites where you can hire freelancers, and Tim mentioned 3 that I am familiar with: Elance.com, Guru.com, and Scriptlance.com.
One point that Tim made about outsourcing that I had never put together was to take advantage of what he called the “economic weather conditions”. Basically, you take the standard unit of currency in your native country and compare it to other countries. Then, armed with that knowledge, outsource your work to countries where both you and your hired workers will benefit from the present level of currency exchange. Very smart, very original approach.
For example, in America, a teenager who has never had a job in their life and has zero skills will make more than $6 per hour at their first job. However, in other countries, if you pay someone the equivalent of 4 or 5 U.S. dollars per hour, it will be a very competitive wage where they live, based on their own economic conditions.
Tim did not give out the details during the interview of how to take advantage of these “economic weather conditions,” but I’m sure the full details are in the book itself.
I don’t know Tim Ferriss from Adam, and I wouldn’t know Yanik Silver if I met him on the street, either. However, I am a pretty good judge of character, and I know logic and reason when I see it (the Capricorn in me!).
To me, Tim made some great points. He had obviously seen both sides of trading time for money vs. finding ways to maximize your income while minimizing your time expenditure. I’ll be adding this book to the ever-growing list of books that are already on my Amazon wish-list.
I hope you’ve found this review of the ‘4-Hour Workweek‘ helpful, and feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below!