Tim Ferriss

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Tim Ferriss
Media from tim.blog.jpg
BornTimothy Ferriss
(1977-07-20) July 20, 1977 (age 41)
East Hampton, New York, U.S.
OccupationAuthor, Podcaster, business books author and TV Show Host
Alma materPrinceton University
GenreSelf-help, skill acquisition, fitness
Notable works

Timothy Ferriss (born July 20, 1977) is an American podcaster, author, entrepreneur and early-stage tech startup investor.[1] Tim Ferriss has penned several books including The 4-Hour Workweek which is a NYT Bestselling[2] business book[3][4]. Tim Ferriss hosts a podcast called The Tim Ferriss Show.[5].

He has written a number of self-help books on the "4-hour" theme, some of which have appeared on the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestseller lists, including The 4-Hour Body.[6][7][8][9][10][11][12]

Ferriss is also an angel investor and advisor to Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Evernote, and Uber, among other companies.[13][14]

Early life[edit]

Ferriss grew up in East Hampton, New York and graduated from St. Paul's School, Concord, New Hampshire. He received a degree in East Asian Studies from Princeton University in 2000.[15][16] After graduation, Ferriss worked in sales at a data storage company.[17] Ferriss began building his own Internet business, BrainQUICKEN, while still employed at the company.[17]


In 2001, Ferriss founded BrainQUICKEN and sold the company to a London-based private equity firm in 2010.[18][19][20][21][22] He said The 4-Hour Workweek was based on this period.[4]

In December 2008, Ferriss had a pilot on the History Channel called Trial by Fire, where he had one week to attempt to learn a skill normally learned over the course of many years. In the pilot episode he practiced yabusame, the Japanese art of horseback archery.[23]

In December 2013, his television series The Tim Ferriss Experiment debuted on HLN. Although there were 13 episodes shot, only a portion of those were shown on television. The show was released in its entirety on iTunes.[24]

In November 2013, Ferriss began an audiobook publishing venture, Tim Ferriss Publishing.[25] The first book published was Vagabonding by Rolf Potts.[25] Other books include The Obstacle Is The Way by Ryan Holiday, Daily Rituals by Mason Currey, and What I Learned Losing A Million Dollars by Jim Paul and Brendan Moynihan.[26]


Ferriss is an angel investor and advisor to startups.[27]

He has invested or advised in startups such as StumbleUpon, Posterous, Evernote, DailyBurn, Shopify, Reputation.com, Trippy, and TaskRabbit.[28] He is a pre-seed money advisor to Uber, a company co-founded by Garrett Camp, the founder of StumbleUpon, which Ferriss also advises.[29][30]

In 2013, Ferriss raised $250,000 in under an hour to invest in Shyp by forming a syndicate on AngelList.[31] Ferriss ended up raising over $500,000 through his backers and Shyp raised a total of $2.1 million (Shyp shut down in 2018).[32][33][34] In 2018, Shyp shut down and laid off all its employees.[35]

The New York Times listed Ferriss among their "Notable Angel Investors" while CNN said he was "one of the planet's leading angel investors in technology."[36][37]

In 2015, Ferriss declared a long vacation from new investing. He cited the stress of the work and a feeling his impact was "minimal in the long run", and said he planned to spend time on his writing and media projects.[38]



Ferriss has written five books, The 4-Hour Workweek, The 4-Hour Body, The 4-Hour Chef, Tools of Titans, and Tribe of Mentors.


As of 2018, "The Tim Ferriss Show", a podcast, has had over 300 million downloads.[5][39] It covers topics ranging from personal and character development, to morning routines and meditation habits of celebrities, CEOs and sportspeople like LeBron James[40], also covering occasional posts about writing, venture capital, metaphysics and even acting/movies.[41]

Television show[edit]

Ferriss is the host of the 2017 TV show Fear(Less) with Tim Ferriss, in which he interviews people from different industries about success and innovation.[42]


The New Yorker has described Ferriss as this generation's self-help guru, comparing him to personalities of similar influence in earlier times, such as Napoleon Hill, Norman Vincent Peale, Stephen Covey and Spencer Johnson.[43] Wired called Ferriss “The Superman of Silicon Valley”.[44] The New York Times said Ferriss was "somewhere between [retired General Electric chairman and CEO] Jack Welch and a Buddhist monk."[17] In 2011, Newsweek declared Ferriss "The World's Best Guinea Pig".[45]

He has been named among Newsweek's Digital Power Index 100 as the seventh most powerful online personality, Fortune's "40 Under 40", one of Fast Company's "Most Innovative Business People of 2007", and a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute.[46][47][48][49]

Both The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Workweek are in the "10 Most Highlighted Books of All Time" on Amazon Kindle.[50][51]

In 2008, Ferriss was named Wired's "Greatest Self-Promoter of All Time."[52]


In 2007, Ferriss was a charity advocate and a member of the National Advisory Council of the public school nonprofit DonorsChoose.[53][54] His projects and donations have raised more than $250,000 for underfunded public school teachers and classroom projects, and his campaigns, such as dedicating his birthday to raising funds and heading LitLiberation to increase literacy worldwide, have impacted more than 60,000 students.[55][56][57][58] In March 2016, Ferriss flash funded 145 school projects posted on DonorsChoose.org in coordination with Stephen Colbert.[59][60]

In October 2014, BUILD Boston, a not-for-profit organization that uses entrepreneurship to equip Boston youth for high school and college success, honored Ferriss with the annual BUILDer Award for Innovation and Entrepreneurship for his work in education reform.[61][62]

Ferriss is also on the advisory board of the non-profit QuestBridge, along with LinkedIn Founder Reid Hoffman, David Sze, and others.[63] QuestBridge was created in 2003 to connect disadvantaged students with elite colleges and helps place over 2,000 students per year.[63]

Psychedelic research[edit]

Ferriss has raised funds for psychedelic studies at institutions such as Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.[64] In 2016, Ferriss donated $100,000 to research psychedelic drugs for the treatment of major depression.[64]

Personal life[edit]

In 2017 Ferriss moved to Austin, Texas[65] after living 17 years in Silicon Valley. In an interview with Business Insider, he blamed "intellectual smugness" and "closed-mindedness masquerading as opened-mindedness" for the move. "For the last few years I've witnessed what appears to be the forming of an echo chamber that is even more hermetically sealed than it usually is in Silicon Valley," he said.

Ferriss has stated that prior to his writing career he won in the 165 lb (75 kg) weight class at the 1999 USAWKF national Sanshou (Chinese kickboxing) championship through a process of shoving opponents out of the ring and by dramatically dehydrating himself before weigh in, and then rehydrating before the fight in order to compete several classes below his actual weight – a practice known as weight cutting.[66][66][67]

Ferriss is a practitioner of the Transcendental Meditation technique.[68]


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  3. ^ Hartley, Matt (April 26, 2011). "Ottawa's Shopify launches $500,000 Build-A-Business promotion". National Post.
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  40. ^ "'How Sleep is an important factor for his performance', LeBron James on an interview with The Tim Ferriss Show - Business Insider".
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  53. ^ Ferriss, Tim (October 9, 2007). "The Karmic Capitalist: Should I Wait Until I'm Rich to Give Back?". The Huffington Post.
  54. ^ "Meet the Team". DonorsChoose.org.
  55. ^ "Tim Ferriss' Give-Back Birthday". DonorsChoose.org.
  56. ^ "LitLiberation". Donorschoose.org.
  57. ^ Ferriss, Tim (May 12, 2009). "Measuring Social Media Campaigns: A Philanthropic Case Study". The Huffington Post.
  58. ^ Rebecca Grant (July 27, 2012). "The four-hour impact: Tim Ferriss partners with Vittana to raise $100K by midnight". VentureBeat.
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  65. ^ "Reddit AMA". Retrieved November 22, 2017.
  66. ^ a b "The 7 Commandments of Blogosphere (and Life) Self-Defense", Ferriss' blog, August 2007
  67. ^
  68. ^ "Transcendental Meditation: More Than a Stress Buster". HuffPost. February 5, 2016.

External links[edit]