The 4-Hour Workweek Review by World Traveling Family

March 11, 2010

The 4-Hour Workweek book, 4HWW, Tim Ferriss

As a family living a rich, global traveling digital lifestyle since 2006, "The 4-Hour Workweek" hits us where we live, so we're very proud to be featured Case Studies (on pages 360 and 361) in this phenomenal new expanded and updated edition! I absolutely adore Timothy Ferriss and all that he has done to support the freedom of the "new rich" lifestyle design revolution with his 2007 AND 2010 New York Times best seller plus his hutzpah and out-of-this-world promotion abilities.

"The only rules and limits are those we set for ourselves" - Tim Ferriss

There is nothing I like better than someone who is brilliant, has great heart, celebrates his own unique, almost fanatical take on life, dares to live out-of-the-box and inspires many through "exampleship"! We're truly kindred souls. He teaches freedom which is what friends have told me that  I have always done in my way. I was absolutely stunned when I found out that his answer to "What do you want in life?" was exactly the same as mine, which was:

"To Love, be loved and never stop learning!" - Tim Ferriss

Timing is everything and the world was eager to hear this tantalizing "Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich" dream and how-to information when it first came out in May, 2007. How many other books could top reviews like this? (And I'm only showing a few):

*"It's about time this book was written. It is a long-overdue manifesto for the mobile lifestyle, and Tim Ferriss is the ideal ambassador. This will be huge."—Jack Canfield, Co-creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul®, 100+ million copies sold

*"Stunning and amazing. From mini-retirements to outsourcing your life,
it's all here. Whether you're a wage slave or a Fortune 500 CEO, this
book will change your life!"—Phil Town, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author of Rule #1

*“This engaging book makes you ask the most important question that you will ever face: What exactly is it that you want out of work and life, and why? Tim Ferriss is a master of getting more for less, often with the help of people he doesn't even know, and here he gives away his secrets for fulfilling your dreams.”
—Bo Burlingham, Editor-at-Large, Inc. magazine and author of Small Giants: Companies That Choose To Be Great Instead of Big

*"Part scientist and part adventure hunter, Tim Ferriss has created a road map for an entirely new world.  I devoured this book in one sitting–I have seen nothing like it."—Charles L. Brock, Chairman and CEO, Brock Capital Group; Former CFO, COO, and General Counsel, Scholastic, Inc.; Former President, Harvard Law School Association

Some of my favorite reviews of 4HWW have been on Get Rich Slowly, David Seah and The Motley Fool by John Rosevear. But like anyone who is "out there" & living a life "out-of-the-box" there are detractors too like Penelope Trunk and Jonathan Mead, and indeed, all points are always valid, but I also can't help but see that those that "stir the pot" do it mostly to try to share in some of Tim's bright light as a marketing move for themselves. It happens regularly in the blogosphere with the wildly popular innovators like Guy Kawasaki, Robert Scoble, etc, so just seems to come with the territory.

“To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” – Elbert Hubbard

Luckily for us, Tim has a lot to say and most of it is interesting and valuable even if it's not every single person's cup of tea. It's the kind of book that can be read and reread many times and the tools applied to many things in many ways. Tim IS a bit of a fanatic, but that is one of the reason's I love him because I am too, but not necessarily in all the same ways. I'm not much interested in body building (but am in healthy living) or even learning to tango (I enjoy watching it), but I admire his passion in all things and how he approaches everything.

I take what works for me in 4HWW and leave the rest like one does with any book. Tons of workable, cutting edge gems in this book! It's a life changing, game changing, classic that should be on everyone's shelf and reread often. Here's Tim's fun short video summary on his 4HWW book:

I think that gives the basics of the original book, better than I ever could do, along with  the reviews I've linked or quoted. It's hard to say something new about 4HWW. But I'm reviewing the new "Expanded and Updated" 4HWW that adds 100 more pages  with more than 50 practical and cutting edge tips that includes many like us who are showing that living the 4HWW dream is possible and comes in many forms.

"It doesn't matter how many people don't get it. What matters is how many people who do" - Tim Ferriss

The 4-Hour Workweek book, 4HWW, signed by Tim Ferriss, Jeanne Dee, Soultravelers3, family travel

As a featured case study, as a family living this dream since 2006, I DO have something new to add to the raves because we KNOW the 4HWW ideas/tools work even for families, perhaps even more so for those who do extended travel together which quadruples the benefits. As I say in the book (small part):

"We moved to a totally digital nomadic life traveling the world as a family in 2006, so we discovered your book and ideas after we had begun and loved it! Our life has changed totally and is more fulfilling and much more simple. We are greener, leaner, healthier, happier, and more connected."

We ARE the family version of the 4HWW from the elementary years perspective and our friends Maya and Tom Frost with four teen age daughters were also living a 4HWW style life as a family before the book came out, along with many others for the astounding advantages. Once you live the life you understand and thankfully Tim had gotten the experience of extended travel and got the message out to the masses & started a revolution.

Tim's timing (and PR skills) along with the tech advances and new economy, made the possibilities open to millions. I love him for that because it aligns with my passion to live life fully free and letting others know how easy, rewarding and enriching it is. As he said about us on his blog :

"Living richly does not require riches" - Tim Ferriss

I hope people really get that. Even a long life only has 650,000 hours in it I hear, which may sound like a lot to Mozart, but seems fleeting from my perspective. We prove that a "millionaire lifestyle" is accessible to an ordinary family. Since we had already been living this life for almost a year, we had already learned many of the keys on our own, but we still re-read 4HWW often and consider it a classic for anyone who wants to escape corporate slavery and really live doing exactly what they want to do.

Time=Wealth. By far the most important lesson travel teaches you is that your time is all you really own in life.- Rolf Potts

The one thing that really bothered me about the original 4HWW was there was no information about families. That makes sense because Tim wrote it in his late twenties and a large part of his audience fits that similar male demographic.( Just as my book will be focused more on the family aspects of extended world travel as that is what we know best, but will have benefits for all).

The updated and expanded 4HWW is still not just for families, but by including families in the case studies along with folks from all walks of life and with a wide range of ages, it's value has increased a hundred fold. Sometimes one just needs to see HOW different people have taken the different keys and created their own paths to greater freedom and life satisfaction. 

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. - George Bernard Shaw 

The newest edition is also updated as far as the latest technologies which is also very helpful. The book makes it clear from the start that you should pick and choose what works for you as every individual needs something unique. By reading the case studies and participating on his blog and forum you will find that there are as many different ways to manifest a 4HWW life as there are people. It's not only about doing travel as an option even though that is certainly an aspect we enjoy and take advantage of.

"The objective is to create freedom of time and place and use both however YOU want." - Tim Ferriss

The book came out on December 15th so I'm late getting to this review. I got my complementary review copy late as it started at my snail mail address in California and I was on my way to Spain for the winter, then there were holidays, my NYT's feature and literary agent onslaught that came out of the blue and added to my only-a-left-hand since August physio stuff that slows us down to a crawl. Thus, this is the quickest I could get it up (sorry Tim), but hopefully there will be some in my audience that will be able to really take advantage of this information. We definitely give it a thumbs up!

"Remember to play often" - Tim Ferriss

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Migration Mark

Thorough review of the expanded edition of the 4HWW. I agree that living rich does not require riches. I live like a Billionaire everyday feasting on massive Thai food buffets, hanging out with great friends, walking around, and talking English (teaching), but don't make much money. Good to hear that family case studies were included. I don't have a family yet, but when I do (hopefully) will still want to continue the lifestyle!

Nomadic Chick

It's positive that he's added families. Funny, I just blogged about the varying ways lifestyle redesign can be adopted. Congrats on the inclusion.


I'll have to consider picking up this book. Your review sounded really interesting and peaked my interest. I specifically really enjoyed all the quotes you included.


Mark-Thanks! It's really a great way to live, isn't it? Can't wait to meet when we get to Asia!

Nomadic Chick-Thanks, yes I think adding families & all kinds of different ways to live a 4HWW really added SOOO much. Funny that your post was on the same wave length!

Mike Thanks! I'm surprised that you haven't read it! Lot's of great quotes in the book inspiring read with useful tips! ;)

Neil J Lloyd

Can't wait to read this expanded and updated version. I loved the last edition - it was as if Tim was reading my mind back to me and adding new insights and ideas. Top bloke!


I haven't had a chance to check out the new and expanded edition yet. I wasn't completely thrilled with the first one, but enjoyed it enough to pick a few ideas out of it to apply to my business models. Hoping to dig a few more out of this new edition (as I head off to amazon to order....)

wilson usman

I actually like to pick up the 4-Hour Workweek every now and then and re-read it. I usually get some new idea after I read it over.

I have the expanded version and it's pretty good.

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