Tim Ferriss Talks About His Latest Book “The 4-Hour Chef”, How To Learn Anything In Half The Time And Why He Went To Sniper School

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This is a good interview. Trust me. You’re not going to want to miss this. Just hit play now. Then grab a copy of Tim’s latest book – The 4-Hour Chef.

Timothy Ferriss needs no introduction. I interviewed him previously about his 4-Hour Workweek book, a runaway success that virtually every person I talk to has read. Today he joined me on the EJ Podcast to talk about his latest book, The 4-Hour Chef.

Timothy Ferris New Book "The 4-Hour Chef"

To be clear, this is NOT an interview about cooking.

Tim has cleverly used his own quest to become good at something he’s struggled with before – in this case cooking – and recorded his learning process as a tool teach us what is ultimately the most valuable insight: How we can learn to do anything.

Tim’s a genius at acquiring skills and knowledge quickly. Anyone who has read his books, his blog, chatted with him, or seen him talk at an event, will know that this is a guy who wants to squeeze every ounce from life. He’s mastered sports, dancing, his body, business and money, languages – pretty much whatever he decides to become good at. He always figures out a better way to learn and does so much quicker than most people do.

The most common question Tim has been asked, which is in fact one of the very first questions I asked him in this interview, is how can he cram so much into his life? How does he do so much and learn so much when he has just as much time available to himself as the rest of us? In fact he has much less time than a lot of people due his rising star of celebrity, which no doubt creates many extra demands as people vie for his attention.

With the 4-Hour Chef, Tim has attempted to teach us his concept of “meta-learning”, which he uses to acquire any skill he puts his mind to.

During the interview Tim explained that his quest with the book is to show people how you can master the big life skills you have always dreamed about – like learning another language, or a musical instrument – and do it in one year, instead of the typical three to five years of hard work.

What I Asked Tim

This was a fun interview for me because I was very curious about a lot of things in Tim’s life. Here’s a sample of the questions and topics we covered –

  • I asked Tim to explain what a typical day in his life is like.
  • How Tim got invited to Sniper School and why it was such a no-brainer to say yes.
  • I was curious to know how Tim became a writer and how his latest book came together. This question opened up a door to some interesting insights into his process, including how he does research, what people he has working with him, how long the book took to create and why this book in particular almost led him to breaking point.
  • While answering the previous question about writing the book Tim mentioned he had people who helped him. Since he’s known for outsourcing, I wanted to know exactly what these people did for him.
  • At the start of the interview I asked Tim how he gets so much done in his life. He then surprised me and said he actually procrastinates a lot, but he knows what is important to get done using habits. This is a great answer to an important question, which really backs up many of the principles like the 80/20 Rule and Theory of Constraints.

Tim Ferris fans, people who have loved his first two books, anyone interested in productivity, lifestyle design or just curious what exactly the 4-Hour Chef is about, will enjoy this interview.

Claim Your Invite To A Live Call With Tim

As Tim mentioned on the interview, he’s doing a special for the upcoming holidays where you can get invited to an exclusive live 1-2-hour Q&A with Tim after launch week, if you purchase three print copies of The 4-Hour Chef and email the Amazon receipt to [email protected].

This book would make a pretty good gift for the readers in your family or friendship circle.

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Yaro Starak is the author of the Blog Profits Blueprint, a report you can download instantly to learn how to make $10,000 a month, from only blogging 2 hours per day. You can find Yaro on Facebook, Twitter and .

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  • nice and speed is the key thanks for this

    • Great interview. I’ve been watching his books on kindle and their rankings seem to be pretty steady (I only do this because I publish books to kindle and like to follow people who sell a lot of books).

      Good timing for this post, thanks Yaro!

      • Glad you liked it Eric, and that’s an interesting idea you talk about there with watching how other authors do on Kindle.


    • Right on Tanisha – speed of execution of the most important activities is definitely a good strategy.

  • Great interview, thanks! 🙂

  • Excellent interview, Many Thanks!

    I may argue about Tim’s view on nutrition but anyway, he’s the one who introduced the outsourcing world to me, early retirement, mini vacations and many other things!

    Thanks again!

    • Tim certainly came up with some lovely labels. I think he really hit the nail on the head with the idea of mini-vacations. Everyone loves that concept.

      Nutrition will always be a contentious issue, with lots of varying opinions and results.

  • Nice interview

  • Thanks Yaro for an interesting interview with Tim Ferriss. Interesting eg. and proof that the principles work across many disciplines.

  • gary


    Great job on the interview. Let me know if you need some tennis tips. I’m in Toronto and have taught for 28 years. Maybe we can hack tennis for you!:)


    • Haha, thanks Gary. I always need tennis tips. My backhand can be a bit nasty. I’ll remember you next time I am in Toronto.

  • Effective vs. efficient….I like it! Thanks for the great interview Yaro!

  • Christopher

    I seem to be the only one who doesn’t get it. I do the four hour work week–but I do it four times every day. Each time I try to outsource a few small things I end up regretting it, loosing money, and worse–loosing so much time managing non-producing “resources.” I’m going to stop reaching out and start reaching in., refocus and do what’s most important, do it by myself so I know when it will get done and I’ll know it *will* be done–and done to my specs.

    • I’ve been there Christopher. I’ve also had the same reaction with deciding to do it all myself, although I still outsourced to locals, but it costs a lot more.

      The key is really knowing what you want outsourced and then finding the good people. That second part is where I have stumbled in the past, but I’m determined to get a quality overseas team together for 2013…I will keep looking until I find them.

  • Rick Resch

    Hey Yaro,
    Thank you for the interview with Tim Ferriss. I don’t want to comment unless I have something valuable to contribute. I’ve read somewhere that CEOs on average read five to six books a month while workers only read about one book a year, and only read the first chapter, if that. I think this is quite true from what I see and was an example in this interview where Tim mentioned about the book, “Topgrading” by Bradford D. Smart, Ph.D., which he learned about hiring the best people for his company. Successful people read more and apply what they have learned. It’s sometimes not how much you you’ve learned in school, but when you are out of it that counts in life. Life is a learning process and when you stop after college, you stop from prospering in life. I’m reading a couple books right now and I want to read the best books from preeminent experts in their fields like Tim Ferriss. I respect people like you and him because the results you both have with your companies, and looking forward to learning more from you.
    Also I try to follow the people you know like Gideon Shalwick, Alborz Fallah, Tyrone Shum, Darren Rowse etc. because I want to know the people you know in Australia. Australia is more literate than the United States. I’ve seen this in a report and I think are more educated. There is some bright minds here in the U.S too.
    “America spends… about $1.3 trillion a year… yet the U.S. ranks 25th out of the 34 OECD countries in mathematics, 17th in science and 14th in reading.” This a quote from a Forbes magazine. There is much to be done here in the U.S. to improve education as well as overseas. Some countries are better off than others. I think it is a great opportunity to make money in education.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you if you have that holiday in Australia! Take care and I wish you well!


  • matt cee

    While Tim is undoubtedly good at what he does, I have complaints about this mastering thing. As a professional level dancer, I have often complained about people like him who make it seem there are shortcuts to competence. Tim’s dancing is proof of that: technique over feeling and expression. While it is important to understand that we can make learning more effective, we should not lose sight of the fundamentals that require a lot of investment.

  • Thanks Yaro,
    I caught Mr. Ferris on today’s Dr. Oz show,
    he’s an interesting chap. And after hearing your interview,
    I’m more motivated to go out and buy his book.

  • Hey thanks for the interview Yaro. It was nice to listen to you both – laid back, likeable and good value. Interesting to hear how Tim chunks tasks into full day blocks sometimes…and his daily “wine down” was a good one too. Cheers!

  • I have never met Tim but just from this post I can gather that he is a person who wants to get as much out of life as he possibly can and he is going to inspire so many people, including me!

    I’ll download and listen to the interview on my coach journey tomorrow, I have a feeling I might get off the other end with a new purpose. 🙂

  • Thanks Yaro! Great Interview

  • Olga


    Not sure if you celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia (probably not), but Happy Thanksgiving to you, Yaro!

    THANKS for all your effort and all your help and inspiration to us! Having been reading E-J for some time now, it feels like you are a very good friend whom I’ve known for a long time. I am sure lots of other readers say the same 🙂 We are thankful to have you 🙂

    If you ever feel down or in a bad mood, Yaro, just think of all the people, including me, whom you have helped enormously and made a difference! Not many of us can say that we’ve impacted so many people!

  • This must have been Tim Ferris week. Right after I herd him speak in this podcast, I heard similar interview in four other podcast. The man sure know how to get around.

    Tim, if you read this comment, Thank you so much for sharing so much with us. It is inspiring to hear super motivated people share their productivity secrets.

  • Thank you Yaro for such an interesting interview. But I think that the secret behing a person who achieve something in less than the average person is the super hard working and super focusing on one area of his learning curve. I think that it’s really all about the work and the time management!

  • Thanks for the great interview.

    As someone who complains all the time about not having enough hours in the day – I really should start reading some of Tim’s books.

    I have heard about Tim Ferris’ books, but have yet to read any. I must be living in the dark ages – either that or I haven’t had the time :). I must put them on my Christmas wishlist.

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  • Hi Yarro,

    Great interview, There are some great content in there but I guess at the end of the day its action that really matters..


  • Tim is a new age bloke for sure, with lots of great tips for pushing your life forward.. Great interview…


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