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Can Reading "The 4-Hour Work Week" Change Your Life?

Updated on August 6, 2012

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferriss is not another get-rich-quick book. It will fundamentally challenge the way you look at your money and your time.

Although Tim Ferriss gives advice on increasing your income, the book is a lot more than just money. It is about a concept he calls "lifestyle design." This book will help you find the freedom to do what you want with your life. Time and money are the tools that will help you achieve your dreams.

The 4-Hour Workweek makes you think since it challenges conventional wisdom.

One of the fundamental ideas behind lifestyle design is that of relative income. What you bring home on your paycheck, or absolute income, is not what is important. Wealth comes from having a high relative income, which is money and free time. $40,000 a year from a 35-hour per week job is better than $70,000 at a 70-hour per week job.

The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris
The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris

The life that The 4-Hour Workweek portrays is enticing--sipping cocktails on the beach, traveling the world, spending time with your family--all while your business and finances are completely automated. You merely have to set up business' system and provide minimal oversight. It is about working smarter and have everyone else work harder for you.

However, what makes this book so fantastic is not the dreams and ideas it presents. This book provides the step-by-step framework for making these dreams reality. It certainly won't be easy to accomplish financial freedom, but this book makes it possible. Ferris provides the websites to visit, the agencies to contact, things to say, and the places to research to get your business off the ground (or to get your boss to grant you raises and additional time off).

The 4-Hour Workweek is not a single one-size-fits all guide. It is a framework you can adapt to work within your unique life and goals.

There are four steps to achieving the 4-Hour workweek, and the book is divided into sections that detail each of these steps:

  • Define your dreams. Figure out what is most important to you and set goals.
  • Eliminate the distractions that are keeping you from your goals. Remove any tasks or responsibilities from your life that you do not enjoy or that are not helping you acheive your dreams.
  • Automate anything in your life that can be. Set up your finances to take care of themselves. Start a business that can run on auto-pilot. Hire a virtual assistant to take care of menial tasks.
  • Liberate yourself from traditional expectations. You no longer have to work in the office. Work from home or work from exotic places abroad. Your automated life means that you have more time to to enjoy yourself.

Will The 4-Hour Workweek change your life?

Maybe. The ideas and tools are certainly contained in this book to change your life. It will not be easy, but if you are willing to work hard to make your dreams a reality, this book can help you get there.


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    • heathersgreatcat profile image

      Heather Walton 

      5 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      This book definitely inspired me. I have read it cover to cover, backwards and forwards, at least a dozen times. It is completely mind-blowing. So why am I still doing the 9-5 thing?

    • profile image

      Rasmus @ 

      6 years ago

      Well it certainly inspired me to take action and I'm currently down to working just three months out of the year (and having a second home in Thailand).

      See more about my journey at


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