The Four Hour Work Week is a business and productivity book written by Tim Ferriss, one of my favorite authors.

This book had changed my life.

Tim Ferriss introduces the concept of lifestyle design.

Tim highlights the process of being a DEAL Maker.

The word DEAL stands for Definition, Elimination, Automation and Liberation.

Here are some of my favorite business ideas and lessons from the Four Hour Workweek:

Define what you want

1.The New Rich Concept

Instead of reaching the big pay off, the goal of the new rich is to make sure payday comes regularly.

We don’t want the million dollars or whatever the goal is.

Our goal is to enjoy and experience what we think we can buy with the money.

The fact is that the life you want costs less than you think.

2. Fear Setting

I think you agree that impossible goals are more achievable than ordinary goals due to the less competition for the impossible.

The downside when you think about it is that fear strikes dead in your tracks sooner or later.

Instead of setting goals and dwelling on them, the ideas is to imagine and define the worst possible scenario and write it down.

Stare at it.

After writing everything down you’ll realize that if you go after your goal on a scale of 1-10 the potential upside is usually an 8 or 9 and the downside on the worst case is meerly a 2 or 3.

Ask yourself. What’s the worst thing that could happen?

After writing it down. Ask yourself what you can do (to prevent and to survive) if the worst were to happen.

3. Dreamlining

Instead of working on something far off. Work on something you can do right now. Each goal should have something actionable today and tomorrow.

Eliminate

4. Low information Diet

We all consume a lot of information on a regular basis.

We have email, news, twitter, facebook and so on.

We also have other stuff coming in on a regular basis.

With our attention constantly bombarded the best thing you can do is to firewall your attention.

For the next thirty days, try not reading or listening to the news, limit checking your email or social networks or reading blogs to once a day to eventually once a week.

Replace your new found free time with the things you wanted to do but didn’t have time for before.

5. Pareto Principle

Also known as the 80/20 Rule.

80 percent of your results come from 20% of your efforts/activities.

This applies generally to the positive and negative things in your life.

80% of the income comes from 20% of the activities and 80% of your stress comes from 20% of the sources.

What are the 20% of the things that contributes to 80% of my profit and happiness?

What are the 20% of the things that contributes to 80% of my frustration and lost time?

**6. Parkinson’s Law

Parkinson’s Law states that the actual amounts will rise to meet the allotted amount.

For example, if you allow yourself to to complete a task in 10 hours, then it will take you 10 hours to complete that task.

If your monthly budget is 100,000 per month, even if the actual needed expense is 10,000. You will end up spending 100,000.

In other words, expenses will rise to meet income.

And this applies to every other area of your life and business.

So you use Parkinson’s Law to your advantage is to set really small budgets and really short deadlines.

The amount of space will be filled up to the extent of how much you will allow it to be filled up. For example,

7.If you can’t define it or act upon it, forget it

Use a not to do list.

Have a guideline to determine what matters. 

As interruptions come in, use this list to eliminate or ignore non important tasks.

Allow bad things to happen. You can’t prevent all disaster. You’ll be encumbered by dedicating all your resources to guarding yourself.

Automate

8. Use Technology

After eliminating the task, use technology to automate repetitive time consuming tasks.

This enables you to free yourself up to work on what’s important.

A computer can remember things better than you do.

Free up your mental ram and use your head for more important tasks.

9. Learn to Outsource

In the same way you can outsource your time consuming and repetitive tasks that require human attention to an outsourcing company or a virtual assistant.

With Business Process Outsourcing as an emerging industry there are more and more things you can outsource to a specialist.

Liberate

10. Learn to Ask

If you don’t ask then you wouldn’t know.

A hard hitting quote from the book is that:

“ your level of success in life is directly proportional to the number of difficult conversations you are willing to have.”

Asking the right questions are critically important to you getting what you want in life.

You need to get over your fear of asking and keep asking for better options.

11. Management by absence.

Empower your people to make decisions.

Tim shares his amazement on how people’s IQ’s seem to double overnight when you give them the authority to decide any that you tell them that you trust them.

Give your people guidelines that centers on doing the right thing and empower them to make decisions.

That way you don’t have to spend a lot of time micromanaging them.

That’s it for now.

If you enjoyed this post, I highly recommend getting yourself a copy of the book.

Have you read the Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss? What is your experience? Feel free to share in the comments below.