The monk who sold his ferrari - 7 life changing principles

The monk who sold his Ferrari is a fictional story written by Robin Sharma. It is a tale of success and richness throughout. The title "The monk who sold his Ferrari" seems very captivating to me. The book is a wonderful work by the author. The primary theme of the book is to guide us on how to lead a prosperous and happy life. The book focused on seven virtues, their importance and most important techniques to learn each of the principles in life. The book introduces the true words of wisdom. It gives us some awesome life lessons to lead our life in a remarkable way.

Start of the story

It is a story of a wealthy lawyer Julian Mantle who has everything in his life. He achieved everything in his life except satisfaction. His life was full of dissatisfaction. Even his family members left him as he was so occupied with his work and money-making. His personal life was ruined. Suddenly he got a heart attack and fell down in his courtyard. Doctors warned him and directed him to choose between life and job.  After winning everything in life, he realized that he was losing his own life battle. Eventually, he started realizing his mistakes. He was collapsed because of illness. He sold his Ferrari and mansion and decided to leave his litigation work for finding the real purpose of life. He started headed towards Himalayan mountains to learn the words of wisdom. There he found the Sages of the Sivana also known as 'monk' which taught him seven virtues about life. The monk told him the principles with a promise that he will pass the knowledge to at least one person ahead.

The monk told him a fable. Imagine you are sitting in a big garden which is full of different plants and flowers. The garden is blooming with distinct shades of colors and fragrances around. You feel very relaxed sitting in the garden. And after sometime when you look around in the garden. You see a lighthouse. After some time, a giant sumo wrestler appeared in the garden and started roaming in the garden. Sumo wrestler seems weird as he was wearing a nappy tied with the red wire and nothing else. Then you saw a golden watch lied in the garden and suddenly sumo wrestler started walking towards it. But he felt down. Then he again woke up after smelling the rose in the garden. Then he saw a path from the garden which was full of diamonds. Then he started walking on the same path. But Julian didn't get anything from this story. So he asked the monk what is really great about the fable. Then the monk explained to him that it's not a regular story.  Every element embodies a timeless principle for a great life. He started explaining the principles in detail.

Principle 1 - Cultivate your mind

The garden in the story symbolizes our brain. Our brain is compared to a garden. If you sow good seeds in it you will find colorful flowers and plants. The same applies to our mind.
  • The quality of our thoughts determines our life.  
  • Life consists of no mistakes and regrets but only lessons. Negative things give us opportunities and learn new experiences for a lifetime. 
  • If we train and master our mind, we can achieve anything in life.
  • Our success story should be first created in our mind than in reality.


  • Opposition thinking - When any undesirable thought acquires our attention and focal point, immediately we should replace it with a motivational one. When a negative thing occupies us, we should take swift steps towards a positive one. 
  • The heart of the rose - This is the best technique to train our mind. Take a rose and practice this in a silent place. Try to stare at the center of the rose. Savor its fragrance and try to think about amazing things in your life. During the initial days, our mind will wander. This is the sign of an untrained mind. It gets better with daily practice. Spend some half an hour daily to master your mind.
  • The secret of the lake - This technique was practiced by sages. We will look into the water in the still lake and try to envision our dreams into reality. It's a kind of visualization for our dreams. This motivates our mind to work for the specified goals and dreams.

Principle 2 - Purpose of life

The second thing in the story was a lighthouse. It symbolizes our passion, goal and dreams in life. As a lighthouse helps ships to reach their destinations, our dreams, and passion motivates us towards positive direction and success in life. Our life should be with a purpose. Highest level of success and happiness requires goal-setting at the right point of time.
  • Set your goals in every field and then have the courage to act accordingly.
  • The purpose of life is a life of purpose.
  • Stay focus on your purpose. Rest everything will come with ease and grace. 


  • The 5 step method - The first step is to have clear defined results. Second is to have a positive pressure on yourself to attain it. The third is to attach a timeline with it. A goal without a timeline will not reach its defined destination. The next step is to practice your goal for 21 days. Let your goal become your habit. Step five is to enjoy the process.
  • Listing down - The power of self-examination comes into the picture. Know your goals and ways to achieve them. Write it on paper. Analyze the milestones prior and plan to achieve them.

Principle 3 - Kaizen: A practice

Kaizen means "Continuous improvement." It means to learn new things and improve yourself continuously. Success comes with a regular process of improvement. In the tale, the sumo wrestler signifies Kaizen. As a person works regularly to gain a physique like a sumo wrestler. 
  • Success and enlightenment require consistency. 
  • Consistent improvement in mind, body, and soul leads to big results.
  • Self-mastery leads to growth at different levels in the journey of life.


  • Do the things you fear - Fear is the major milestone of every journey. Doing things and getting success will lead to no fear after a period of time. Limits are set by ourselves. When we dare to challenge our own set limits, then our real human potential liberates.
  • 10 rituals to follow - The ten ancient rituals are as follows:
    (a) The ritual of solitude - Spend some time every day with yourself in peace to know yourself better.
    (b) The ritual of physicality - Take some time every day to train your mind and body. As you master your mind, master your body as well.
    (c) The ritual of live nourishment - Fill your plate with all kind of required healthy vegetables and fruits covering all essential nutrients.
    (d) The ritual of knowledge - Abundant knowledge requires continuous reading and learning. Never feel that you have reached a saturation point in gaining knowledge. It is an ongoing process until death.
    (e) The ritual of personal reflection - See yourself in a mirror and review daily. Analyze your actions. Check what went wrong and right on that day.
    (f) The ritual of early awakening - Sleep early and wake up early. Morning time is the best time without the least distraction. Utilize it to achieve your dreams. Get up early and feel the difference.
    (g) The ritual of music - Music is the best motivator. Spend a little time with it every day.
    (h) The ritual of spoken word - Develop a habit of positive self-talk.
    (i) The ritual of the congruent character - Build your character every day. It includes taking actions and habits. Our actions make our habits. Our habits make our destiny. Our habits make our character. Take significant steps to make yourself a better version.
    (j) The ritual of simplicity - Live a simple life. In today's era, our needs and desires are increasing at great speed. Reduce your needs and be content with less.

Principle 4 - Discipline

The fourth thing highlighted was a red color wire cable. Cable denotes discipline and self-control in our life. Thin wires together form a cable. In the same way, discipline makes a path towards success.
Small things and habits which we practice daily come under discipline.
  • Willpower is the essence of discipline.
  • Discipline is built by performing small acts of courage.


  • Mantras/Creative Envisioning - Repeat a motivating sentence for yourself 30 times a day. Something like "I am more than I appear to be."
  • The vow of silence - Spend some time in silence. Wage a war against your weaknesses. It increases your abilities. When we hold our tongue, we can increase control of our body.
  • Implement positive punishment - To follow discipline, implement small punishments for yourself to keep everything in place.

Principle 5 - Respect time

Time is a precious commodity. It is a non-renewable resource. The clock in the story denotes the importance of time.
  • Focus on priorities.
  • Simplify your life. 
  • The ancient rule of 80/20 principle - Spend more time in 20% of the tasks which gives 80% results.


  • Have a death-bed mentality - Act every day as it is your last day. Treat your family, friends, and colleagues as it is your last day. 
  • Have the courage to say "No" 
  • Smart management of time gives happiness.

Principle 6 - Acts of kindness

The rose in the story denotes that the rose contributes its fragrance to others. Flower and fragrance denote social cause. Acting in interests of others without thinking about own benefits. 
  • Practice daily the act of kindness.
  • Giving happiness doubles your own joy.
  • Live to give.
  • The quality of life ultimately comes down to the quality of the contribution.
  • The happiness of giving is incomparable. Practice acts of kindness daily.


  • Build richer relationships - Your time and energy are the beautiful gifts you can give to others. Cultivate strong relationships in life. 
  • Give to those who ask.

Principle 7 - Embrace the present

Live in the present. "Never sacrifice happiness for achievement." To achieve true happiness, live in the now. Stop being the prisoner of the past. Build your future as an architect. The path of diamonds in the story symbolizes "the present."
  • Live in the now.
  • Forget the past, build future.
  • True happiness lies in living your present.
  • Sacrificing the time to spend with loved ones? Is that a choice for happiness.


  • Live your children's childhood - Take the time from your busy schedule. Watch them grow and flourish. The best thing you can give your children is love. Make them realize they matter the most to you. See your childhood in them. Rewards of a professional career are way less than the time spends with your children. Your steps of success shouldn't be on the cost of missing your child's first step.
  • Gratitude - Thanksgiving is the primary way of satisfaction in life. Count your blessings. Don't hold on to things and regrets in life. Each day is a new day and has gratitude for the same.