After his 2007 productivity guide “The 4-Hour Workweek” became a bestseller, Tim Ferriss dedicated his career to studying a wide variety of experts at the top of their fields.
His new book, “Tools of Titans,” is a collection of the best lessons he’s learned from over 100 highly successful people.
It wasn’t until last year, however, that he discovered a four-word mantra to profoundly change the way he approached achievement.
Jenny Sauer-Klein, cofounder of the acrobatics-yoga hybrid AcroYoga, introduced him to the idea “No hurry, no pause.” It’s one of the nine principles of Breema, another alternative exercise-therapy program that Sauer-Klein studied.
As it’s explained by Breema Center director Jon Schreiber, “When you rush, time shrinks. When you’re relaxed, time expands. This is true even though it’s very hard for the mind to get. When you’re relaxed and doing something willingly, you’re participating in life.”
The idea connected with a conversation Ferriss previously had with the entrepreneur and speaker Derek Sivers, Ferriss wrote in “Tools of Titans.”
When he lived in Los Angeles, Sivers would regularly ride his bike through a route that was about 25 miles. He found that nearly every first stretch of the ride clocked in at 45 minutes, and when he stopped for a midpoint break he would be exhausted and out of breath. One day he decided that he would ease his pace to a point where he was actually enjoying himself while still pushing himself. To his surprise, he comfortably hit the midpoint at 43 minutes into his ride.
Sivers told Ferriss that “all that red face and all that stress was only for an extra two minutes. It was basically for nothing.” It became a turning point for Sivers, who applied the insight to his other pursuits.
Ferriss said this point — that calmly and confidently moving through tasks yields better results than rushing through the day to end up burnt out — recently appeared in his life a third time, when a Navy SEAL friend told him one of the principles of his military training: “Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast.”
Ferriss now regularly writes “No hurry, no pause” at the top of his notebooks as a daily reminder to himself.
“You can get 95% of the results you want by calmly putting one foot in front of the other,” Ferriss wrote. “Luxury, to me, is feeling unrushed. No hurry, no pause.”
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