Wednesday, April 2, 2008

4-hour workweeks and the Fight Club

So I've been reading the 4-hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss.

I first have to be up-front and admit to not having finished the read. Second, I have to admit that even though I'm not that far into the book, I'm already inspired. Not due to ground-breaking revelations per se. But the guy has charisma. I also have to give him props for portraying said charisma via the written word. That's good juju in my book and something I've always been amazed by. How simple text can evoke a vibe with other people so they think you're a "cool" person...or "you suck" and you're not someone they would want to hang with.

I first ran into this while playing video games with people online; forging deep friendships with those I'd never even met. Since then, I've also experienced this same situation via Instant Messaging and Twitter. If you haven't experienced it, it is a truly mesmerizing phenomenon. One I'd think could make an amazing research topic, but I digress.

Anyhoo...back to Mr. Ferriss. The real hook to his sage wisdom (if we can even call it that), is his uncanny knack of sounding a lot like Tyler Durden. And I do mean a LOT like him and I mention this as a compliment. Tyler certainly had charisma and was able to sway people to follow his lead. Pay no mind to the fact that Tyler Durden doesn't actually exist outside of the silver screen. My impression of what he was getting at in Fight Club: once you've beaten your fear, you're free to live your life. Ferriss eludes to the same concepts and it makes me wonder two things.
  1. What in my life is really so important as to be unrecoverable in the event of catastrophe...or worse, failure?
  2. Am I just as messed up as those poor saps blindly following a crazy-man in Fight Club?
In answer to the latter, I sincerely hope not. :P But to the former, the only things that really fall into that category are my wife and my fatherhood. The rest is just gravy. In the end I do feel that the whole exercise I think is healthy.

Imagine the worst possible outcome if you try something completely over-the-top and you fail.

Once you've faced that possibility and rationalized a way out of that dark place, it's really not that dark at all. Excellent and thought-provoking in all the right ways.

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