I really want to like Tim Ferris (author of The 4-Hour Workweek), but I don’t.
I kinda think he’s an asswipe.
But he’s also a genius, and a lot of things in this book are so cool! So inspiring! So right on!
I’m going to tell you about 4 things I read (so far) that I love. (I’m reading the Kindle edition so I can’t give you a page number, but I can tell you I am 43% finished.)
He says the opposite of love isn’t hate; the opposite of love is indifference. When I read that, I went: “Oh god, yes. Of course. Indifference IS the opposite of love. As soon as indifference moves into the neighborhood, all the love houses go up for sale. And then, as they say, “There goes the neighborhood!”
The opposite of happiness isn’t sadness. No. The opposite of happiness is boredom. Again, “Oh god. Bingo.” I mean, not all the time, but most of the time it’s the truth. How many times have I found myself unhappy, but not particularly sad either? (Many.) And the root cause of my unhappiness? Boredom.
He says instead of asking yourself: “What do I want?” or “What are my goals?” ask, “What would excite me?” and then just go and pursue that. Brilliant.
It makes it so much easier to clarify things. So I did it. I asked myself: What would make me excited? Answer: To publish a really kickass piece of writing that would help people feel more alive and enthusiastic about their own lives and make them want to share their gifts with others.
What else would excite me? To be able to talk about what I’ve found out about how to find one’s life’s work and how to do what you were put on this earth for (since I’ve managed to actually DO that.)
Anything else? Yeah. To be in high demand as a change agent for this message. (i.e. get paid for it.)
(That’s what I came up with in the first 5 minutes of asking myself that question. Had I asked myself: “What are my goals?” I would probably be cruising the kitchen right now, looking for something salty and crunchy.)
And the fourth thing I really liked is when he said that most people suffer from Adult Onset ADD: Adventure Deficit Disorder. I got all gangsta at this point and started fist pumping the air, going, “Right on, Brotha!” We DO have Adventure Deficit Disorder, and we need to fix that. NOW.
But here is why I don’t like Tim Ferriss:
He wants to automate and outsource, and cut out meetings, and email, and face-to-face interactions, and still make a bundle. And he does it. But then what does he do with all this time he’s freed up, all this bundle he’s made?
He goes and lives the most idiotic, pointless, stupid life imaginable. He enters tango competitions, and cheats his way to a boxing championship, and buys expensive shit, and travels to exotic places and spends his time rubbing coconut oil on his belly.
I want to scream: “Dude! No! Make a difference! Help somebody! Team up with Greg Mortensen of Three Cups of Tea and figure out how to stop the collective insanity of this world, one little village at time!
My only hope is that this book will land in the hands of someone who will actually use the time he or she saves by eliminating pointless activities, to do something truly honorable and helpful.
Maybe someone like me?
3 thoughts on “Why Tim Ferriss Is Both A Genius And An Asswipe”
HAHAHAHA … I just stumbled across this and am really laughing! You CRACK ME UP! I love your honesty, my dear! And I would love to see you gettin’ all gangsta. PS I might be suffering from ADD … gotta cure that with a kayak!!!
Well, would you look at that: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Ferriss#Philanthropy It looks like this post is a bit outdated 😉
Yeah, this post is 8 years old. And in the intervening years I’ve really come to like and respect his work. I am a big fan of his podcast, and his book, “The 4 Hour Body” really helped me to lose fat and build muscle. His “4 Hour Workweek” made him famous and wealthy as shit, but since then he’s been a terrific force for good in the world, as your research has shown. I am ashamed of this post, but I’m not going to take it down because it’s proof of how wrong I can be. Thanks for commenting!