Book Review, Business, Personal Development

Review: Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss [Penguin Random House]

“We all need fuel. Without the assistance, advice, and inspiration of others, the gears of our mind grind to a halt, and we’re stuck with nowhere to go.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger

For the last two years, Ferriss has interviewed more than 200 world-class performers for his podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show. The guests range from super celebs (Jamie Foxx, Arnold Schwarzenegger, etc.) and athletes (icons of powerlifting, gymnastics, surfing, etc.) to legendary Special Operations commanders and black-market biochemists. For most of his guests, it’s the first time they’ve agreed to a two-to-three-hour interview. This unusual depth has helped make The Tim Ferriss Show the first business/interview podcast to pass 100 million downloads.

This book contains the distilled tools, tactics, and ‘inside baseball’ you won’t find anywhere else. It also includes new tips from past guests, and life lessons from new ‘guests’ readers haven’t met. Among hundreds of tactics, you’ll also learn:

  • How to optimise your mornings with Tony Robbins’ ‘priming routine
  • How to push through fear and instil confidence like Jamie Foxx
  • How to ask questions like best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell
  • How to get unstuck in your creative work like Paulo Coelho, author of The Alchemist


In short, Tools of Titans is a readable highlight reel of his popular podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show. Now I know by now your brain is already sending flashing red lights saying, “stay away it’s a snorefest!” but surprisingly not. It’s actually written in a way that sets this book apart from the rest. Ferriss only captured bits of the interviews on his show that could be of relevance to its readers. This ensures you don’t waste your time having to read through paragraphs of his work before getting to the good bits.

Another thing I liked about Tools of Titans is that Ferriss covers different aspects of life such as health, wealth and wisdom. This separates it from the ordinary business/self-help books that only tackle one topic. Ferriss writes about people’s different approaches to finding peace and success in their different fields. He also offers insight into matters which make for a great break away from the set chapters. This makes it an enjoyable read as it could appeal to anyone with ambition wanting to know the secrets of those who’ve already run their course in their field.

Something that stood out about this book was that it was genuinely a fun read! (And that’s not common amongst business books.) I was weary about skipping certain parts of the book as I read it (Tools of Titans is a really BIG book) but was consoled by the fact that Ferriss actually encourages you to do exactly that. In his introduction, Ferriss notes you should skip what doesn’t grab you, which I absolutely love as it goes back to what I first learned about the art of non-finishing in his previous book The 4-Hour Work Week.

All-in-all, Tools of Titans is a really good book. A cut above the rest of the latest career development books I’ve read lately. I genuinely think it would be a great addition to anyone’s collection.


Recommended Reading:

  • Tim Ferriss – The 4-Hour Work Week
  • Charles Duhigg – The Power of Habit
  • Napoleon Hill – Think And Grow Rich


“There are a lot of powerful quotes. But this book is much more than a collection of quotes. It is a toolkit for changing your life.” – Tim Ferriss

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