I am not a fan of personal development books written by so called motivational writers. I prefer writers that have previously done something with their life.
I knew the book was total garbage from the first 20 pages but I tried to give it a chance and pressed on. I read so many reviews that claimed that reading this changed their life so I thought that it must be me. After I realized that it is not me but the book I still kept reading so I can write an informed hate review. So there it is:
This book feels like a patronizing practical joke. But the agony you feel reading it is very real. The Monk who sold his Ferrari makes me think about a Curd Rice and not a good one. Usually, in curd rice you add different kinds of leftover rice and curd that is not very fresh but not gone bad either. Then, you put a lot of pickle and condiments to give a strong taste so nobody knows that the rice is not at their best. This book feels the same. The author collected a variety of cliche, already discussed ideas such as positive thinking, meditation, goal prioritization, focus, getting up early, more exercise and yes, oh yes, eating of live food aka becoming a vegetarian. The last bit almost made me to throw the book to a wall. So, what do you do when you have absolutely nothing new to say but you want to make it interesting, so everybody buys your book? The monk who sold his Ferrari, is a misleading title. The man who sold his Ferrari and became a monk, would have been more accurate. So, in order to touch the main target group, the depressed corporate employee, you take a lawyer as a main character. You add a bit of drama, a heart attack, which pushes the hero to quit his job and leave in a quest to find himself? Where does the hero go? You guessed it! I, of course. After he spends some time with a very isolated yogi group in the Himalayas he comes back to the US enlightened, looking 30 years younger and ready to help others find the true path to happiness and health. The first victim is a colleague lawyer to whom our hero presents the complex ancient philosophy in one night. Yup, this is all it takes to become a new person. Most of the book is a dialogue between the “monk” and his moronic friend. The disciple is so entranced by the sage of his mentor that he agrees with everything he says, no questions are asked and all the proposed techniques and ideas are immediately adopted. I sometime wondered if hypnotization was used.
The other perhaps more glaring problem is that this is a horribly-written story. Every single scene seems so incredibly contrived and pandering, which leaves it being soulless and emotionless, which is ironic, because it’s almost certainly trying for the exact opposite effect.
Not to sound overly negative, there were some interesting concepts that hit home for me. Summarizing them below –
1. Take care of yourself first. If you can’t do even that, how can you take care of others?
2. Maintain strict discipline in training your body, and your mind.
3. Setting aside some “quiet time” on a daily basis.
4. Goal setting – committing to a goal publicly, so that you hold yourselves accountable in front of your peers.
5. Reflect on what you did good / bad the previous day, and make points for improvement on a daily basis.
6. Get your priorities right – not a lot of people on their death-bed wishing that they had spent more time at work.
This book could have been a LOT BETTER had the author dropped the “fable approach”, and just presented his ideas in a straightforward manner. Over all a 2.5 star read. At least now I know what all the fuss is about.