I have a few extra thoughts on the four-hour work week before I shelve it, both figuratively and literally. At one point in the book he tells that story of the fisherman in Mexico and the Harvard MBA. You know the one. The Harvard MBA is on holiday in Mexico when, late one morning, he meets a fisherman on his way home. He asks the fisherman why he is knocking off so early, and... well, if you haven't heard it, here it is.

What Tim doesn't say in his book - he seems a smart guy, so I will assume he realises it in real life - is that you could easily substitute "Mexican fisherman" for "nine to five office worker" and "Harvard MBA" for "Tim Ferris". In the final chapter, he talks about what to fill your life with, now that "earn an income" isn't the only thing on your list. And he suggests you might want to live your life in service to others, and he suggests that you might want to take up full-time employment of a different (more meaningful) kind. Well and good. What he doesn't say - or at least not explicitly enough - is that you may already be doing everything you need to do, you just need to recognise it.

As someone who resents the drive to consume that underlies much of our culture, I would have a hard time following his business model - which is based around shipping product - without feeling like a hypocrite for most of my day. I'm not saying I couldn't find a way, I'm saying I may be better off finding a way to get paid directly for the life of service I aim to live, rather than shipping product in order to earn the income which frees my time to... live that life of service. I am, in effect, the Mexican fisherman in my relationship to Tim Ferris' book.

Am I glad I read it? Yes. Although I have ultimately rejected much of what he suggests I should do, it has helped clarify things to me. I can even recommend it, not to those who are satisfied with where their life is headed, of course (why would you even feel like picking it up?), or even to those who are truly just overflowing with genuine aspirations (although it is of some limited use in this situation, see for example my last post). If, however, you are in the process of re-evaluating your life, if you are thinking of changing directions, if you feel that you are trapped or stuck and there is no way out of the place you're now in (which, in the reality of the free world, is unlikely), then I recommend it. You may find it gives you the tools and the courage to shut off the constant buzz of your never-ending to-do list and to recognise and evaluate your options in the clear light of day.

Book review over, but I am still looking for comments, tips, advice on my previous post.

Edit: I have been wondering, since I wrote this a couple of hours ago, whether a personal crisis such as... I don't know... infertility? might aid in the process of focussing on things of value in one's life and breeding the courage to act on that focus. Hm.

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