LitLiberation: How to Travel the World–and Get a Personal Assistant–for Free

First, a few questions from Eastern Europe for you all. Take a minute to seriously consider each:

Envision the 5 books that have most impacted your life. How would your life be different if you’d never read them?

Where might you be today if you’d never met the most influential teachers in your life, past and present?

How would your options be affected if you could never again read a book, menu, or sign?

Here is the huge competition I’ve been promising. It’s the biggest I’ve ever done, and there are some incredible world-famous people involved. You won’t be disappointed:

If you’d like to support this idea, please take a second to vote for it here. Be sure to see the “prizes” sectionhow could you get into the 10K Club if you had to?

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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64 Replies to “LitLiberation: How to Travel the World–and Get a Personal Assistant–for Free”

  1. Wow! Thats a wonderful thing you have going on there Tim. And I say that not just because of the opportunity it could offer someone, but moreso because of the opportunities that the litliberation will offer to others. A very noble task there sir.

  2. Hello Tim, I’m not sure if this idea will get me into the 10K club this week, but I’ve recently launched a bare-bones site giving advice on what movies are worth watching. I came up with this idea after reading your book.

    I remember reading at one point that you didn’t want to see anything which was not at least as good as The Matrix: Reloaded. Well, this may be the answer to your movie-watching angst. Call it “The Matrix Threshold”.

    Thanks for the inspiration,


  3. @Bill

    Go to the site mentioned in the video and click on the “Prizes” link. You will see the 10k club there.

  4. Considering the randomness of the universe… if I didn’t read my 5 favorite books or have my splendid teacher or never read again… it wouldn’t matter!

    There would be something else to replace it. An experience, a different teacher, music or a photograph instead or words. Breath is enough, brother!

  5. …..May i add,

    I would highly suggest posting this on myspace, as a lot of companies and people subscribe to the blogs here. There are a lot of people whom would be interested in this. I think it will yield some great results.



  6. …..Tim

    out of curosity how many people have hit the 10k mark..?

    You have defintiely added some great prizes.


  7. Tim as such a big fan it is so disappointing that all your prizes always require you to be a US Citizen could you please look to make future competitions have the ability to have a winner from any country even if that means that the winner has to pay to fly to US or whatever that may be I’m sure many people agree with me.

    P.S- good luck with the literacy experiment, pitty the lack of the global inclusion though Tim. =-)



    Hi Poe! Two things: 1) Please still compete! I just can’t offer the material (concrete or $) prizes internationally, but the recognition (including from Google, Yahoo, SixApart, etc.) and such is all open to you guys international. 2) I only restrict the competitions for legal reasons here in the US. If it were up to me, and I didn’t care about the law, I would make it open to you guys. I’m working on other options for doing this.

    Please compete anyhow, and thanks for the questions and support!


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    Nihongo de nanika o yatte miyoo! Tabun 10ka goro Nihon ni iku to omou. Dewa!


  9. Tim,

    Im a fan of self education and am for this cause. I am considering making the donation completey from my stone and concrete business. Am I still able to make the top 100 people to the 10K club. Please let me know, i think this would be a great opportunity to meet and network with such brilliant minds.



  10. How about 16K for condoms for the parents of the 30% and 1K for trees to cover the school site instead. No school needed.

  11. Tim, I read your book during a flight to Florida a month ago. It is one of the books that changed my life. I have been living and working exactly as you suggest. I wrote a language book that helps people who know Arabic to increase their level of learning by reading it. It is a huge success in the military and makes me an income that I have been living on comfortably. Recently I started expanding the brand into other languages. With the work demands I needed help, and your mention of Brickwork India in the book was a welcome relief. I stepped off the plane in Florida with a huge sense of optimism and a list of things for a prospective Indian assistant. Unfortunately, it has been a major dissapointment so far.

    I emailed the company that same night (one month ago) and received instant reply, but that was it! Since then the company has been extremely sluggish in processing my request and I still have no assistant. emails go unanswered, promises to provide are never fulfilled and it has been nightmarish. Maybe I feel so because I was really happy about it and now I am facing reality. Brickwork is the only company that said they would meet my requests.

    I think that part of your excellent book should have been more thoroughly researched. I can provide you with a copy of the correspondence I had with the BWI people to see for yourself how inefficient and frustrating they have been.

  12. Hope you’re having a great time in Europe.

    Having a fundraising and marketing background, I think LitLiberation is a truly inspired idea and am working on getting my company to participate.

    – Danielle

  13. [b]Envision the 5 books that have most impacted your life. How would your life be different if you’d never read them?[/b]

    1. Illusions by Richard Bach

    2. The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss

    3. Catch – 22 by Joseph Heller

    4. Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert

    5. Atomic Dog – The Testosterone Principles by TC Luoma

    I believe that every new relationship, whether with a book, a friend, a lover, a mentor, a child, or any number of experiences, can teach me something new that I can immediately implement to get more satisfaction.

    Two notables:

    I first read Illusions when I was 14. I learned about “being my own messiah.” I learned I could walk through walls (figuratively, for now…). I started to hold myself accountable for my happiness and my life.

    I read Tim’s book earlier this year in 6 hours and made profound changes after number 7. I feel like I have so much responsibility without really feeling like I have any responsibility. Wrap your mind around that! I feel like Tim is the big brother I never had. I still read sections 4HWW at least once per month to refresh my self.

    [b]Where might you be today if you’d never met the most influential teachers in your life, past and present?[/b]

    Probably in Seattle.

    Or selling pecans on the side of the street in a little Texas town.

    Ok, really, I wouldn’t be anywhere close to where I am now. My mentors and teachers have shown me love – and what lies within me that I couldn’t uncover by myself.

    Much respect!

    [b]How would your options be affected if you could never again read a book, menu, or sign?[/b]

    What options?

    Illiteracy would devestate me.

    Thanks for this challenge Tim. I look forward to being a part of it.


    Nate Green

  14. I thought of expressing some disagreement to giving money to “non-profits� – I have a very personal reason for that, but I did want to suggest hands-on voluntary work to make a difference. I have been there, done that, and soon I will be ready to come back to help again.

    Now, to #22 Randy Jones, I have a simple question: what do we do with those kids in need, who are already here in this world? What we would do to comfort their painfully hungry tummies and weakened bodies? What we would do to give them back the rights to live on their own – alive for the pursuit of happiness? Would you suggest again maybe to tape their mouths with condoms rubber bands, so we cannot hear them crying in pain? Silence is gold, huh!

    Tim, you rock, may all the good Gods and Spirits protect and bless you!

  15. Great Job Tim,

    glad to see you are still adding back to the world. Are you in still in Eastern Europe right now? As you said in the book, you can’t back every cause but you can make a difference in the ones that matter to you(my paraphrase).

    I just liberated myself from a 4 year thankless job relationship and started a muse that should contribute 25 to 100k/mo. to my new 4 hour life. I had the idea before the book, but had no idea how I would do it. Half way through the book I brokered this deal and just like that…new rich life plan in action. I would like to thank you personally but will probably settle for this impersoal blog response, hopefully you will see it. The 4HWW has changed my life forever and I am truly grateful. I thank you and my kids thank you.

    All the best,

    Patrick McInnis

  16. hey tim.. i’m surprised you hadn’t considered working with international sponsors in turn for some kind of adspace or other barter of service.. that way you don’t have to worry about international law! 🙂

    good stuff tim… thx for being the inspiration!

  17. Refering to the comments by Jabra Ghneim #24. Has anybody else had the same problem? Or is this an isolated case?

    I guess if Jabra will return to comment on any support she has recieved by the powers at be…

    It would be much appreciated.

    What’s everybody else thinking?


  18. Tim your book changed my life. There one question that I have for you. How would you do all that you do, with small children at home? I have a 1 year old daughter and another due in January, and I can’t find a way to do all the awesome things you mention in your book while still being with my kids that I love. Any advice?

  19. Aloha Tim,

    I am new to this blogging and I hope you find my question.

    I want to know where you stayed in Buenos Aries (a luxury apartment w/cleaning, security etc..) for $500. a month. Sounds like heaven and like a great place to start doing all that I need to to create my 4 hour work week!

    I am anxiously waiting for your reply.

    Mahalo from the Hawaiian Islands!


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  21. Tim,

    I just bought your book and I am diving into it heavy. I am almost certain that I can incorporate your genius “out of the boxness” to my business. My growing 3D animation/rendering company is the perfect ginny pig! I am familiar with elance and know the potential. However, I find that it’s difficult to let go of having 100% control. My goal is to overcome this obstacle and my plan is simple: read the book, apply the techniques and expect incredible results. Wish me luck.

  22. Is the book distributed in Hong Kong and China?

    Is there a translated version (either Cantonese or Mandarin) available in China? If so, how successful is it in Asia?


    Hi Martin!

    The book has been sold into both mainland China and the Taiwan markets. I believe the Chinese version (simplified characters) will be published in Dec/Jan. I think the timing is good for their state of hyper-capitalism and all of the time famine it brings. Only time will tell how well it’s received 😉

    All the best,


  23. Hi Tim,

    Thanks a lot for your answer. The nice people at Crown Publishers already sent me the chinese publishers company name.

    Now the reason why I was interested in it; we are developing an online service outsourcing portal which will go live in late october targeting the Asian market. Therefor we would be very interested if there is any possibilty of arranging an endorsement deal with you. If there is any possibility please reply to me either here on the board or contact me directly via email.

    Thanks for your time,


  24. Not really sure of the best place to post this, but here it goes anyway. I can’t open any of the calculators or worksheets on the resource page. Any suggestions?

  25. Hey Tim,

    Did you see what was posted on the Get Friday homepage??

    Due to the sudden increase in business, GetFriday is currently experiencing a shortage of resources, Until further notice, there will be a three-week waiting period between signing up and the start of service. We can’t take on clients instantly anymore without sacrificing our quality. We apologize for any inconvenience caused. Please bear with us while we ramp up.

    And you promoted Get Friday HEAVILY in your book. See what happens when too much advertising adversely affects business???

  26. Question: The Lit Liberation site references 4 weeks from their Sept 29th post as the duration of the challenge. Will they continue to accept donations indefinitely though?

    Idea: For anyone interested in supporting rural education in developing countries and vagabonding at the same time, I can recommend (OBA).

    When I was 16, growing up in small-town Iowa, I had more time than money to donate. So, I used other people’s money for a good cause and scored a ticket out of Iowa at the same time. Here’s the rundown…

    I initiated a fundraising drive in my hometown to cover my travel expenses to Tanzania for OBA’s Rift Valley Walk. If I recall, this was accomplished primarily through a pancake breakfast.

    Next, I made the journey to Tanzania with the small (around 10 of us in 1996) OBA group. We flew into Arusha (at the base of Kilamanjaro), and spent about a week safari-ing our way to the starting point of our walk near the Kenya border. It was, of course, awesome seeing the game preserves, etc.

    Then, we began the 8-day 211 mile hike – covering a spectacular array of terrain as our elevation changed. The hike is primarily a publicity stunt – more on that in a moment. We wrapped up the trip with visits to OBA projects – including rural schools, hospitals and the first ever Masai girls school. (Masai boys have had access to education for many years, but the girls were not allowed by their elders to be educated until 1993).

    For two years following the trip, I conducted slide show presentations for civic and spiritual groups in and around my community. I raised approx $15,000 total.

    In the last couple of years, I’ve frequently thought about going back. OBA doesn’t do the hike every summer, but pretty close. I’ve even thought about leading a yoga retreat in conjunction with the OBA hike.

    Tim, do you have any interest in such an adventure?

  27. Fantastic idea! I just got the book and found the website, and I see that the 30-day challenge is up. What were the results? Did you make your $1M goal?

    Assuming the challenge was successful, why not make this an ONGOING challenge, with new (donated) prizes each month?

    Another thought — why not localize it? People naturally have affinities for their home towns… why not play on that? People from different cities could create a similar challenge that donates specifically to local schools, and get local bigwigs and celebrities to donate the prizes. (In fact, I’ll start working that angle in my home town and report back!)

    Again, nice job! Very inspirational!


    Hi Dan — I want people to copy the LitLiberation model! This was my intention all along. This was intended to be an experiment for everyone. I did the trial run, and I want others to run with it. We didn’t hit $1 million, but it raised more than $200,000 with almost no cost, and some of the biggest bloggers in the world raised around $8,500. Colbert Report raised $40,000 in the same period.

    Try it out!

    All the best,


  28. Hi Tim et al,

    Wonder what you can make out of this one – is it more than just a a good way to store PIM online and have reminders sent by mail/SMS instead of throuh PIM on PC/Berry? How would you tweak this to further increase free time and mind?



  29. You mention traveling the world and relocating without fear of anything…Well I happen to be Muslim and I happen to also wear a full cover (except for the eyes)moving and living in other countries for 3 to 6 months might not only get me XRayed @ an airport, added to an arbitrary “no flight” terrorist list, but it can get me into a one way ticket to Guantanamo bay (which I hear is delightful compared to other options in other countries). What would you do in my case?

  30. Litliberation sounds like it’s on a great mission. I would love to contibute but I am a broke college student. Will you be doing this next year? I should be working by then. I am graduating this semester! 🙂

  31. Definitely a motivational and thought-provoking article. I never had a mentor or book that I found “rocked my world” into transformative change until I found a health coach, Frederic Patenaude, whose own life modeled success to cause me to want to “go raw” and achieve greatness doing what I loved. The teachers all taught that you had to follow traditional paths to be a success, but Frederic’s life (and now yours) speaks otherwise. You both are amazing models! I could spend all day reading your blogs.

  32. First of all thanks to Tim on his eye opening book. What is most important is that he shows us that he has done it and so can we, if we so choose! I am working on changing my life to make my inner soul happy, and sometime it is so hard to get out of the box.

    Anyways, the school idea is actually what i had been planning to do for my father’s hometown in china. i visited it a few years ago and was surprised at how lacking it was, just being an hour away from the nearest city. the problem was no paved road, so it was hard to get anything there.

    anyways, i go through about 2 laptops a year and i have a million desktops and obsolete monitors/printers etc. why not start with a computer lab or basic things that people here pay others to throw away ? ask bill G to donate the OS or just use the old one. You dont even need the 1700 per person deal mentioned to make a difference.

    i always thought that when i “make it big” i will build a school there, but thinking smarter allows more possibilities. After all, this is not a new idea and friends in my grad school have done it in India. American currency goes a long way in the middle of nowhere India, so any little bit helps a lot.

    guess what i am going to do with my “void”? i simply cant believe people have problems filling the “void”. there are so many coool stuff to do if one’s time and location/fiscal dependency is removed.

    Alas, I am still working on that one….

    Helen (still stuck at work)

  33. hi tim!

    I have read both your and mr freidmans books. Excellent reading!

    I was along that path of outsourcing work however I ran into the problem of lazy and dishonest employees. I fired them all and went to the states to drive a truck for awhile and get some meditation done.

    Now after I have autopsied the biz I realized that it was due to a dishonest employee. He took orders and filled them from his own shop instead of mine.

    Any suggestions?

  34. I LOVE the info in your book (4 hour work week), and have given copies to people. But I find your website very frustrating! In particular, you have a lot of “contest” pages that are undated, so it’s impossible to tell if the contest is still in effect, what the entry deadline is, etc. And — this particular page (LitLiberation: How to Travel the World–and Get a Personal Assistant–for Free) – again, an undated contest, and there’s no info on the page (except perhaps in the video) on “How to Travel the World–and Get a Personal Assistant–for Free” – and no indication that this info is in the video.

    Just in general – I find your website very frustrating to use.