You need to read this book!


“To dramatically change your life, you don’t need to run a 100-mile race, get a PhD., or completely reinvent yourself. It’s the small things, done consistently, that are big things.” –Tim Ferris

I just finished a great book, and feel like going back to re-read it already. I’m sure I’ve missed something since there is so much good information here. After downloading a sample from Amazon, I immediately bought the book, and highlighted so much information, I probably negated the point of highlighting in the first place! The book that I’m writing about is Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines and Habits of Billionaires, Icons and World Class Performers, by Tim Ferris.

The author of the Four Hour series (Four Hour Workweek, Four-hour Chef, etc), Mr. Ferris has a blog where he interviews interesting people- Navy Seals, technology and finance innovators, star athletes, movie stars, etc- that he admires. What a great job! For this book, he has whittled down each interview into the gems: quotes, books they read, strategies, etc. that each person uses. The book is organized roughly topically, into Benjamin Franklin’s “healthy, wealthy and wise” concept with each interviewee listed roughly in the section that applies to them, though I feel that many meet all three categories!

Additionally, he has written chapters that expand on some of the interview topics in the book, and I have to say that a few of the chapters- one on being a lifelong traveler, and one on “the canvas strategy” are worth the price of the book on their own. “The canvas strategy” which the author adapted from another author, Ryan Holliday, who in turn adapted from the Stoics, is the idea that serving others selflessly allows us to learn, provided we are choosing the right teacher. I thought this was such a profound message- learn by putting your ego aside, and serving someone else.

One of the many things I appreciate about this book is probably not something that other people would notice, but as a psychiatrist who has worked in hospice as a volunteer and deals with death anxiety frequently in patients, I appreciate the thread running through the book regarding the brevity of life, and inevitability of death- make the most of what you have! I often suggest Staring at the Sun by Irving Yalom for patients regarding this issue.

My only complaint- and it isn’t really a complaint: at the end, he lists all of the books that his guests have suggested as vital to their development. My book list to read is now longer than I have conceivable years on earth!

Author: lisayoung57

I’m a Board Certified psychiatrist, practicing on the East Coast of the US. I started this blog because I love planning, efficiency, minimalism, and technology, but am also strongly interested in making life better! I strongly believe that personal technology can make our lives easier, and minimize the time we do things that are less important to us. I hope you’ll come along on the journey with me of how to combine high-tech and the best of low-tech to make our lives better. I love Apple products, and will write about about uses for them in my own life and others on these pages. I am not affiliated with Apple, or any other company. Other things I like to do are read, meditate, drink coffee and tea, travel, hike, cook and spend time with my husband and two children. I have recently written a textbook chapter for Oxford University Press.

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