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Brian T. Neff

New York, NY | Member Since 2007

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  • 1 reviews
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  • 384 titles in library
  • 81 purchased in 2014
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  • The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Timothy Ferriss
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    Overall
    (2826)
    Performance
    (565)
    Story
    (577)

    The 4 Hour Work Week explains what a lifestyle entrepreneur is and why you should want to become one. It teaches you how to "kill" your job and design a life, the 80/20 rule and how it increases productivity, how to replace your dreams with goals, and more. Listeners can lead a rich life by working only four hours a week, freeing up the rest of their time to spend it living the lives they want.

    Tim says: "Some good ideas but, not so sure. . ."
    "Shameless."
    Overall

    Mix a handful of shopworn business truisms ("20% of customers provide 80% of profits," "Work always fills the time alloted") with a jaw-slackening disregard for basic ethics and you get Tim Ferriss's "lifestyle design" plan. The premise: somewhere along the globalization superhighway, luxuriating in pleasure and whim for all but four hours of each week became the calling of the "new rich" (an awkwardly invented designation Ferriss no doubt dreams will replace "tipping point" as the zeitgeist's latest catchphrase). It became the calling of Ferriss, at least, through a crafty scheme of pulling in profits from online nutritional supplement sales and outsourcing to grossly underpaid Indian virtual assistants such tiresome tasks as communicating with a significant other.

    Where Ferriss's concept most obviously breaks down is in the aggregate: society would collapse if everyone who bought this book successfully implemented his scheme, because its very lifeblood is the slew of suckers who actually work. How can you tango dance on a beach in Argentina when Akshay, your virtual assistant, is also busy tango dancing on a beach in Argentina?

    More disturbingly, it is hard to listen to or read this book without turning queasy at this undoubtedly intelligent and talented Princeton graduate's near-oblivion to the possibility that, ultimately, life may be less about 'beating the system' to escape work and more about finding a vocation that both energizes oneself and services the world at large. The final chapter on service comes off unsettlingly as a last-minute tack-on by editors suddenly faced with a manuscript of stunning superficiality and self-absorption.

    Save your money. Less book sales means less pesky bookkeeping work for Ferriss to outsource to Akshay.

    89 of 96 people found this review helpful

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