Simple Tips from Tim Ferris’ Tools of Titans
I’ll start by saying that this book is a really great read. I highly recommend buying the hardcover version, which I almost never recommend. I say this because I think you’ll want to take lots of notes and highlight parts, or be able to jump around easily in the book, and I don’t enjoy doing that on the digital (Kindle) version.
This book, according to Tim Ferris, is supposed to be a “buffet” of sorts. It contains interviews and wisdom from dozens of famous people, which are all very interesting and from all kinds of backgrounds. They are broken down into the categories of healthy, wealthy, and wise.
The “Wealthy” section includes PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel and Sophia Amoruso of Nasty Girl fame.
The “Wise” section includes the likes of General Stanley McChrystal and actor Jamie Foxx. (Of note, also in the Wise section are Rainn Wilson (aka Dwight Schrute), Paulo Coelho of the Alchemist fame, and Brene Brown. I would kill to be at a dinner table with those 3. Seriously. Wouldn’t that be epic? But I digress.)
This book is designed to use as a sort of reference book. You can look up individual interviewees to learn their wisdom (i.e. go straight to the part about Malcolm Gladwell or Seth Godin, etc.), or you can read it cover to cover, like I did. Either way, I found myself wanting to go back and review different parts that I had already read, which is why I recommend buying the physical book version.
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but right in the front, before you even get to the good parts, Tim Ferris highlights a few common habits that his interviewees had, which I want you to steal. For real. These are all great things to do. Or, if you’re already doing them, great!
Steal #1: “More than 80% of the interviewees have some form of daily mindfulness or meditation practice.”
You don’t have to sit in lotus with windchimes to have a mindfulness practice. Just find a space that soothes you, breathe deeply, and enjoy. One of my favorite mindfulness practices is to walk outside without my phone so I can be present and just think. I like to do this no matter what the weather, and it’s something everyone can do. You can also find an app like Clear if that’s more your style. Whatever you do, I highly recommend you do something daily for introspection.
Steal #2: “A surprising number of males (not females) over 45 never eat breakfast, or eat only the scantiest of fare (e.g., Laird Hamilton, page 92; Malcolm Gladwell, page 572; General Stanley McChrystal, page 435)”
People say that breakfast is the healthiest meal of the day, right? That may be well true for some people, but not for everyone. Some people aren’t wired that way and just aren’t very hungry in the morning time, including me. If you are hungry in the am? Rock on and keep your breakfast. However, if you aren’t hungry right away and you don’t feel like it impacts your day? Don’t sweat it. Everyone’s schedules and needs are different.
I personally like to start my day off with coffee and eat about 4 hours after I get up. There are some benefits to intermittent fasting (going without food for up to 12 hours), as long as your thyroid and insulin levels are fine when you do it. Also, if you’re a person who works out in the afternoon, eating the majority of your calories (particularly carbs) around your workouts may help your metabolism function more efficiently. So my point is… although breakfast CAN be important, listen to your body and what works well to support your health goals and workout schedule.
Steal #3: “Many use the ChiliPad device for cooling at bedtime”
Studies show that a cool bedroom promotes increased fat loss. I for one, seriously hate a cold room, but I will admit I sleep better when the room is chilly. The physical benefits are well documented, and anecdotally most people will tell you that they wake up if the room gets too hot. So, if you’re in great shape and looking to optimize your health a little more, then go for it. Or, if you don’t sleep well now, try turning down the thermostat like some of the smart people in this book do.
I definitely recommend the book for either you, or as a gift for those who like self-development and learning about high performers. Get the book here.
Have questions? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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