The 4-Hour Work Week

Vince Vaughn

I just started reading Tim Ferriss' book The 4-Hour Work Week.  The title itself is a little offensive to my current habit of hard work, and I would never have picked it up except for the fact that it was called "life-changing" by a person I respect.  I thought it was going to be a book about how to get out of working.  And it kind of is.  But it's really about how to streamline your actions so you are only doing what is really important to you.  I'm all for streamlining.

The most helpful exercise so far in the book is based on Pareto's principle - 80% of outputs come from 20% of the inputs.  The exercise is to write down the following:

1. Which 20% of sources are causing 80% of my problems and unhappiness?

2. Which 20% of sources are resulting in 80% of my desired outcomes and happiness?

I made a list.  I could immediately see the reason I am spinning my wheels in one area.  I feel the need to tweak patterns until they are perfect.  This means I am constantly making patterns.  I need to get to "good enough" and move on.  Even as I write this, I feel myself protesting, "But...but..."  Let go.  Move on.

I realized that I really like writing blog posts.

And I realized that it's the scary conversations that accomplish the most each day.  Ferriss states this quote in the book - "A person's success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have."  I used to avoid this like the plague.  But I'm trying to learn to dive in.

I'll end with this thought from the book - "Being busy is a form of laziness - lazy thinking and indiscriminate action."