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Book Review and Giveaway: Killing Sacred Cows

“Killing Sacred Cows” is certainly a catchy title.  At first glance, you might think that this book has some sort of religious theme, but it’s not that type of book.  Killing Sacred Cows is about money myths that perpetuate, and the reasons why they are myths.  The thing that stood out most about this book is that it goes against common financial wisdom.  Think living frugally or maximizing a 401k (or RRSP) is a means to wealth?  The author certainly doesn’t.

About the Author:

According to the back of the book:

Garrett Gunderson is an entrepreneur who became a multi millionaire by the age of twenty-six.  He is the owner of 5 companies, winner of the SBA Young Entrepreneur award, and one of his businesses is on both the Inc. 5000 list and the Utah 100 list of the fastest growing companies.  Garrett coaches elite business owners in the financial services industry and has created programs that empower people to achieve wealth.

What is this book about?

As I mentioned above, this book is about debunking money myths.  In particular, each chapter is separated by common money beliefs that can be holding us back.  To be completely honest, a lot of the so called “myths” that the author writes about are strong beliefs that I currently have about money.

The myths covered are:

  • Myth 1: The Finite Pie
  • Myth 2: You’re in it for the Long Haul
  • Myth 3: It’s All About the Numbers
  • Myth 4: Financial Security
  • Myth 5: Money is Power
  • Myth 6: High Risks = High Returns
  • Myth 7: Self-Insurance
  • Myth 8: Avoid Debt Like the Plague
  • Myth 9: A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned

What Did I Learn?

I’ve always been the type to worry about the numbers in wealth accumulation.  According to Mr. Gunderson, however, money in itself has no value, it’s people who have value.  Money is simply the result of “adding value” to the world.  How do you “add value”, you ask?  Through finding what’s called your soul purpose.

Finding your soul purpose is discovering what brings you the most joy and creates the most value for others.  It’s what enables us to develop to our full potential.   Ask yourself, if you had all the money you ever needed, what would you do everyday to be productive? Also, in what areas do you have superior skill and have extreme passion?

These questions regarding “soul purpose” really get me thinking.  Am I working to my full potential with my current career?  Do I wake up in the morning to go to work simply for the paycheck?

Final Thoughts

Even though there are a couple sections in the book that I don’t agree with (like the section on self-insurance), overall, I recommend this book.  It gives fresh perspective on how wealth and money works from someone who has made millions at a very young age.

Want a Free Copy?

  • Simply leave a comment and you’ll automatically be entered in the draw for a free copy.
  • Please only 1 comment entry / person (please enter a valid email address).
  • Only those with a North American mailing address may enter (publisher rules, sorry).
  • Contest will end Friday 5pm EST Nov 21, 2008 and the winner announced shortly afterward!
-> If you would like to read more articles like this, you can sign up for my free newsletter service below (we will not spam you).

FT About the author: FT is the founder and editor of Million Dollar Journey (est. 2006). Through various financial strategies outlined on this site, he grew his net worth from $200,000 in 2006 to $1,000,000 by 2014. You can read more about him here.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Houska November 18, 2008, 8:28 am

    Note that the book has a website http://www.killingsacredcows.com where you can read the 1st 2 chapters for free.

  • Jeff November 18, 2008, 8:42 am

    Sounds like an interesting book, I’d love to win a copy!

  • Gregory November 18, 2008, 8:54 am

    I agree with Jeff, Sounds like an interesting book, I’d also love to win a copy!

  • Mike November 18, 2008, 9:07 am

    I’ll toss my hat in the ring…

  • DG November 18, 2008, 9:09 am

    Count me in!

  • Yann November 18, 2008, 9:11 am

    Sign me up.

  • Chris November 18, 2008, 9:11 am

    Sounds like a nice read…

  • Fratguy November 18, 2008, 9:16 am

    Would love to win a copy of this book.

  • Troy November 18, 2008, 9:20 am

    Sounds like an interesting read…I recently read a similar book (not about wealth accumulation) called Rules of the Red Rubber Ball by Kevin Carroll which is about finding and sustaining your life’s work. Very short read but certainly inspiring. Kevin Carroll by the way is the Nike guy who created those yellow Nike wristbands.

  • Quick Lunar Cop November 18, 2008, 9:25 am

    The book sounds interesting. Count me in!

  • Michael November 18, 2008, 9:37 am

    Love the title. Sign me up!

  • Scott November 18, 2008, 9:38 am

    That’s one thing people tend to get confused, price and value. Price does not necessarily reflect value and vice versa. A good example would be oil and gas. Six months ago oil was $140/b, people got up and drove to work. Today oil is $55/b, people get up and drive to work. The price has changed drastically but the value remains the same. Or the other way — Cabbage Patch Kids.

    The same goes for ‘people value’. Although the market usually prices things accordingly (e.g. surgeons making more than paperboys) there will always be anomalies (e.g. CEO’s of failed banks “earning” more than anyone; volunteers who build schools in Third World countries getting paid nothing — I though education was important?).

    As for working your “soul purpose”, that idea has been around forever. Unfortunately, the world doesn’t always value or price everyones “soul purpose” at living-wage levels. What if your “soul purpose” is poetry and that’s what you had “extreme passion” about? The current market is still not going to price nor value you even a fraction of what a mechanic or plumber gets paid (even if they hate their jobs).

    The real soul killer is when it works the other way, when the worker finds no value in the job he/she does and does it simply for the pay cheque — like me and millions of others. Sometimes reality trumps soul.

    Hope I win!

  • James November 18, 2008, 10:03 am

    I certainly have been creating my own money myths by reading all sorts of finance blogs that flog frugal living as the only means of succuess. But I also maintain that there are a lotof different ways to become financially well off…
    Everyone’s got to find their right mix!

  • Bryce November 18, 2008, 10:05 am

    I’d love to read it.

  • Al November 18, 2008, 10:10 am

    I think this book would be great for anyone who regards their work as their life. Since I regard my life as my life, I don’t want it.

  • Investoid November 18, 2008, 10:13 am

    Count me in!

  • Devon November 18, 2008, 10:15 am

    Sounds really interesting!

  • Triple_Eh November 18, 2008, 10:29 am

    Would like to give it a read!

  • Brandon November 18, 2008, 10:39 am

    Looks like a good read, if I don’t win, I will probably look for it anyways. Thanks for the lead.

  • afulldeck November 18, 2008, 10:40 am

    If this book is any indication, it didn’t take long for the capitalist system to kick right back in. Working for “soul purposes” works only in an environment that doesn’t require wealth creation. So unless your born a Warren Buffett, be prepared to make sacrifices of the soul. Count me in, and enjoy your day.

  • JasonM November 18, 2008, 10:41 am

    please and thank-you

  • Daniel November 18, 2008, 10:56 am

    What if your soul purpose is killing sacred cows?

  • Elizabeth November 18, 2008, 10:56 am

    looks interesting. count me in!

  • guinness416 November 18, 2008, 11:04 am

    This actually sounds like an interesting read. I’ll put on my library list even if I don’t win. Thanks for the review and contest. Moo!

  • mike h November 18, 2008, 11:13 am

    I’d love to win this book! Count me in.

  • Thicken My Wallet November 18, 2008, 11:14 am

    I love free stuff! Sign me up.

  • Krys November 18, 2008, 11:21 am

    Count me in. Looks like an interesting read. A different perspective from what I usually read. Thanks!

  • Money Minder November 18, 2008, 11:22 am

    I’d love to win a copy of this book!

  • Mark November 18, 2008, 11:36 am

    I’m skeptical.

  • Jasper November 18, 2008, 11:37 am

    Based on your review, it promises to be an interesting read!

    If I win, and once I completed reading it, I would donate the copy to the local library as they don’t have one yet.

  • bill November 18, 2008, 11:39 am

    Count me in

  • Dane Praed November 18, 2008, 11:47 am

    I’m definitely interested … the Soul Purpose section caught my eye as I’m in one of those “working for a paycheque” situations and want out!! :)

  • 45free November 18, 2008, 11:47 am

    Free Stuff…COOL!!!

  • Chris November 18, 2008, 11:52 am

    count me in

  • vilkri November 18, 2008, 11:54 am

    The idea of “soul purpose” sounds very appealing. Finding it would probably also lead to a pretty fulfilled and happy life. And therein lies the problem: how to find one’s “soul purpose”?

  • Bucky November 18, 2008, 11:55 am

    If money is the result of adding value to the world, then people who work in various low (or no) paying jobs helping other people (NFP workers, volunteers, teachers, etc) are not adding value to the world? Perhaps I am taking this too literally. Like similar books, it is only one man’s opinion and view of the world – which can be quite colored when you are a multi-millionaire under 30. Take from it what works for you and that you think is logical.

  • Jimmy November 18, 2008, 11:56 am

    Sounds like an interesting book to read. Sign me up for a free copy!

  • Marianne O. November 18, 2008, 11:58 am

    Ooooh, a challenge to most if not all of my core beliefs about money. Sounds like a must read.

    Thanks for the review.

  • Dan November 18, 2008, 11:59 am

    The Smith Manouvre certainly broke a sacred cow for me.

  • Sheryl November 18, 2008, 12:00 pm

    sounds like an interesting read

  • TL November 18, 2008, 12:03 pm

    This is a book I’d definitely be interested in reading!

  • Ringo November 18, 2008, 12:05 pm

    I believe this book is very informative!

  • venter November 18, 2008, 12:15 pm

    All right, I’ll bite.

  • DBennett November 18, 2008, 12:18 pm

    I like business books. Sign me up.

  • Kev November 18, 2008, 12:27 pm

    I agree that people are more important than money. It looks interesting as the author of the book appears to be especially good at the money part. I look forward to reading it to see how well he is at the other.

  • Millionaireby45 November 18, 2008, 12:28 pm

    I feel lucky today.

  • cannon_fodder November 18, 2008, 12:32 pm

    I’ve heard the philosophy that if you can do what you love, you ultimately will be successful.

    Now, if only someone can help me find a job that will pay the bills while I surf the web, watch sports, play golf (poorly), and eat junk food.

  • Xenko November 18, 2008, 12:44 pm

    Fuzzy Wuzzy was a woman

  • Serhan November 18, 2008, 12:45 pm

    Sounds interesting!

  • Steve November 18, 2008, 12:47 pm

    Sounds interesting, sign me up!

  • Chelsea November 18, 2008, 1:00 pm

    Looks like an interesting read – might have to buy it even if I don’t win it!

  • Indra November 18, 2008, 1:05 pm

    I like to try my luck

  • Jenny November 18, 2008, 1:13 pm

    Sounds interesting, count me in!

  • Ann Stewart November 18, 2008, 1:18 pm

    Sounds interesting for sure……… maybe we are all wrong.

  • Frog of Finance November 18, 2008, 1:34 pm

    Looks like an interesting read. :o)

  • Pesto November 18, 2008, 1:40 pm

    I don’t know what my “soul purpose” is, but I know my “sole” purpose is to make some ca$h.

    Lots of it, now and for later.

    Oh, and to score a free book or two along the way. Also good.

  • Kevin November 18, 2008, 1:40 pm

    Money myths? Who knew? :-)

  • Brad November 18, 2008, 1:41 pm

    Oh Oh Oh Pick me!!!! :)

  • Thankful For Fools November 18, 2008, 1:47 pm

    Tossing in for a shot at it, before I have to go and buy it anyways,.

  • atony November 18, 2008, 1:48 pm

    Count me in.

  • xiLLeNtz November 18, 2008, 1:56 pm

    thanks Houska, count me innnnn (:

  • Greenhouse November 18, 2008, 1:58 pm

    For more money myths, download and watch “Zeitgeist Addendum” – it’s free and will shake up the way you think of money… even if slightly overexaggerated. Count me in btw

  • Fariss Sabbagh November 18, 2008, 1:59 pm

    Count me in!

  • Ron November 18, 2008, 2:07 pm

    That ‘soul purpose’ is what every person is created for.

  • The Reverend November 18, 2008, 2:07 pm

    I like free stuff. Count me in.

  • Anand November 18, 2008, 2:15 pm

    Please count me in…

  • James Gibson November 18, 2008, 2:17 pm

    I would love to read this book.

  • LL November 18, 2008, 2:21 pm

    This book sounds interesting and a good read. I am in the middle of determining my “soul purpose” so it could be very relevant.

  • Pascal November 18, 2008, 2:38 pm

    Count me in!

  • Tony November 18, 2008, 2:39 pm

    I would love to read it – sign me up!

  • Start-Up November 18, 2008, 2:41 pm

    sounds like an interesting read

  • tom November 18, 2008, 2:41 pm

    great post! I’ve heard good things about this book.

  • Neil November 18, 2008, 2:54 pm

    I am most interested in myth 2 – not in it for the long haul?
    Hope to win the book.

  • Aaron W November 18, 2008, 3:00 pm

    Sounds very interesting. I’d love to have a copy!

  • toby November 18, 2008, 3:02 pm

    My interest is tweaked.

  • Rich November 18, 2008, 3:04 pm

    Can’t pass up a free book!

  • Craig November 18, 2008, 3:06 pm

    Debunking the wisdom of avoiding debt, must be a US author, love to read it.

  • Jesus November 18, 2008, 3:09 pm

    Count me in.

  • Susan Pipes November 18, 2008, 3:13 pm

    I would love to win a copy, it sounds very interesting!

  • kirk bounder November 18, 2008, 3:16 pm

    All well and good as far as it goes. But to what extent is just plain luck a factor? “Time and chance…”?

  • telefantastik November 18, 2008, 3:20 pm

    count me in!!

  • Noel November 18, 2008, 3:25 pm

    Count me in…

  • harry saunders November 18, 2008, 3:34 pm

    Glad you mention books that you do not entirely agree with.

  • Mike November 18, 2008, 3:35 pm

    Yeah, free book!

  • ryan November 18, 2008, 3:40 pm

    throw me in.

  • Ludger Hacault November 18, 2008, 3:47 pm

    I’ll bite.

  • Jonathan Atkins November 18, 2008, 3:49 pm

    I would love to win a copy

  • Kenny November 18, 2008, 4:11 pm

    Sounds like an inspiring read!

  • EastCoast November 18, 2008, 4:17 pm

    please add me to the draw

  • Finance_Addict November 18, 2008, 4:26 pm

    I’m starting to wonder if the real trick to making lots of $$ is to write a book.

  • JME November 18, 2008, 4:26 pm

    I like beef, and would like to read the book

  • Mike November 18, 2008, 4:39 pm

    Great.

  • AndrewP November 18, 2008, 4:42 pm

    Looks very interesting!
    Count me in for the draw!

  • Tetsuo November 18, 2008, 4:51 pm

    Nothing like a giveaway to bring the traffic up (guilty as charged)

  • Mat November 18, 2008, 5:13 pm

    Finance_Addict – Couldn’t agree more!!

  • yyj November 18, 2008, 5:15 pm

    Very interesting book. Please count me in.

  • Dwight Thompson November 18, 2008, 5:25 pm

    Sounds like a good read

  • Jordan Clark November 18, 2008, 5:44 pm

    I’d like to hear more on which of the myths you might disagree with from the book.

    For myself, I already investing in myself, I have the job and life I want right now, I’m becoming financially literate and continuing to build wealth.

    So I’m curious but also kind of thrown off that these ideas of wealth accumulation, lowering risk for long term investments, avoiding debt, living below my means, and self insuring may be myths.

  • Kevin November 18, 2008, 5:46 pm

    Count me in.

  • Eric November 18, 2008, 6:11 pm

    sounds interesting I wouldn’t buy it but love to win it

  • Mike November 18, 2008, 6:22 pm

    I’d like a shot at winning, thanks

  • Gates VP November 18, 2008, 6:41 pm

    FT; the titles on the myths are all pretty short. With even a little wiggle room, it’s pretty easy to “disprove” all of these.

    Take the whole RRSP/401ks concept. Check out this post on the Mint.com blog.

    The post talks about the 10 / 10 / 4 rule for retirement. Starting in your 20s, save 10% of your income target 10x your ending salary in savings, withdraw 4% per year. This is the type of model being pimped to you and to me, it’s the type of model that was pimped to our parents. Experts have been pimping these retirement models for decades.

    The model is full of shit.
    (and I don’t swear very often)

    Read the post for explanations.

    From Gunderson’s web site, here are realities we’ve been talking about on this blog for a very long time:

    A 401(k) is not the “safe” and “smart” plan that you have been told it is; in fact, it’s an extremely risky investment for most people.
    Listen to the masses of people who are now worried about retirement b/c the market tanked. If you are anywhere close to retirement, why would a tanking market have any influence on your ability to retire?

    Conventional retirement planning strategies, techniques and products are probably keeping you from the retirement you really want.
    (see above) It already sounds like something’s wrong here and I haven’t read the book.

    Net worth is a poor indicator of wealth and your ability to retire well.
    Talk to Derek Foster.

    Debt may not be what you think it is.
    We’ve been over the Good debt vs. bad debt. Look at the use of SM. Our discussions about student loans. How many people on any of these blogs have actually bought all of their cars in cash?

    We’ve been talking about the themes in this book for a very long time.

    This book is just the big hammer that tries to place reality all at once instead of the bite-sized pieces in which we’ve been working.

    Don’t include me in the draw, I’m off to buy my own copy (and likely mail out a few), this sounds like the book I’ve wanted to write for over a year :)

  • Greg November 18, 2008, 7:05 pm

    I like the quote “money in itself has no value”. It goes right along with something else that I watched just recently. This opinion might be a little extreme, but it’s interesting none the less.
    http://www.chrismartenson.com/crashcourse
    also
    http://www.chrismartenson.com/forum/iran-oil-bourse-fall-dollar-and-third-great-war/8045

  • Oleg November 18, 2008, 7:11 pm

    Count me in!

  • Caroline November 18, 2008, 7:17 pm

    I’d love to win this book. Sounds like a great read just before the holiday season!

  • Paolo November 18, 2008, 7:37 pm

    Always up for a good book. Thanks for the review.

  • Matt November 18, 2008, 8:02 pm

    I’d love to win a copy!

  • Up Too Late November 18, 2008, 9:05 pm

    Sounds interesting. Count me in!

  • John C November 18, 2008, 9:10 pm

    Thanks for sharing. Wouldn’t have know about this book otherwise.

    But like anything, take whatever is presented with a grain of salt. The author seems to be of the promotional speaker/personal development/good-feelings delivery type of person. These kinds of people are probably the most dangerous and hazardous to your health… If something seems too good to be true, it probably is…

  • John C November 18, 2008, 9:16 pm

    @#62

    I’ve watch Zeigeist Addenum. Before this video, their earlier videos were “informing” you about the potential danger of the so called “elitists” to enslave the world via microchips and other tactics a la “Big Brother” style. Now, in Zeigesit Addenum, they turn their ideologies 180 degrees around and are actually PROMOTING the enslavement of people in their so called “Technological Utopia”. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say the Zeigeist videos were actually produced by the same so called “elitists”. But to gain your trust, they had to bash themselves in the first few videos…

  • John C November 18, 2008, 9:30 pm

    Btw, you don’t have to consider me for a free copy of the ebook. I just wanted to comment for fun. On a last note, there is a trace of Robert G. Allen and Robert T. Kiyosaki’s way of thinking in this book. People should note that these “gurus” actually made their fortune by joining Amway and selling their stuff to multi-level marketing and delivering seminars, and not how they came about to becoming wealthy, as described in their books and seminars.

  • Young November 18, 2008, 9:42 pm

    Interesting concept….I’ve often thought about that too (people, in theory, maximize their utility when they’re doing what they’re best at/good at/love doing). Too bad it doesn’t seem to jive with our humanity.

    Wouldn’t mind to read that book, either.

  • Marina November 18, 2008, 9:56 pm

    Count me in!

  • jatinder November 18, 2008, 9:56 pm

    Sign me up! Better not advocate stocks like other million books. Would love to read though!

  • Jonathan Kerr November 18, 2008, 10:10 pm

    Sign me up. Would love to have a read of this book! Especially if it’s free!

    Cheers.

    jk

  • DwellOn November 18, 2008, 10:15 pm

    Put my name in the hat. Another good book that sounds similar is the 4-Hour Work Week.

  • Tyler November 18, 2008, 10:42 pm

    Looks like a good book ;-)

  • Pat November 18, 2008, 10:51 pm

    Put me in!

  • Saver Queen November 18, 2008, 10:58 pm

    Wow, sounds like a great book! Thanks!

  • Anant Bhadauria November 18, 2008, 11:01 pm

    Will definitely check this book out

    Thanks

  • Paul November 18, 2008, 11:15 pm

    The book sounds interesting . . . as is your blog. Keep it up!

  • Nathan November 18, 2008, 11:18 pm

    Sounds interesting.

  • Terri November 18, 2008, 11:59 pm

    Love your blog!

  • Cash Instinct November 19, 2008, 12:04 am

    Keep it up thanks for the free books to readers

  • Thanigai November 19, 2008, 12:04 am

    Seems interesting. Count me in!

  • Thierry November 19, 2008, 12:15 am

    I don’t mind not winning a copy.
    Through the interlibrary loan system I can get almost all the books I want, usually for free and sometimes after a bit of waiting time.
    But if I win a copy I would be glad to read it and then donate it to my local library!

    Thierry

  • Mike November 19, 2008, 12:44 am

    Would like to read this one. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

  • Al November 19, 2008, 1:21 am

    I would love to win a copy!!

  • Dan Horgan November 19, 2008, 4:14 am

    I’ll look for it at Chapters.

  • SuburbanWife November 19, 2008, 5:35 am

    I’m tired of reading about clipping coupons and maxing out the 401k. Neither apply to me. I’m all about killing some sacred cows and, as such, would love to win a copy of this book. Thanks.

  • FX Trader November 19, 2008, 6:57 am

    This a great website! Thanks for contributing…
    This book has me curious so count me in please! :)

  • newinvestor November 19, 2008, 8:46 am

    Looks like an interesting read, count me in!

  • Dividend Growth Investor November 19, 2008, 10:54 am

    This sounds like a nice book. Count me in!

  • LBanks November 19, 2008, 11:20 am

    I am always interested in a read that poses new thoughts/perspectives that challenges traditional wisdom. Sounds like an interesting read…

  • FearLES November 19, 2008, 11:48 am

    Sounds like a good read, would be nice to win.

  • Davina November 19, 2008, 1:05 pm

    count me in!

  • DRW November 19, 2008, 1:49 pm

    I’m in. Sounds interesting.

  • Linda Lin November 19, 2008, 2:05 pm

    Thanks for Sharing. Please count me in.

  • Arthur November 19, 2008, 3:39 pm

    Count me in.

  • Art November 19, 2008, 6:20 pm

    Count me in.

  • john in Kitchener November 19, 2008, 6:50 pm

    Thanks for sharing this and many other tips. I haven’t heard of this book and look forward to checking it out – winning a copy would be even better. We’ve lead a simple life for years, without feeling compromised in any way. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some sacred cows out there just waiting to be discovered.

  • Wilson November 19, 2008, 8:42 pm

    Include me, please.

  • Mai November 19, 2008, 9:57 pm

    Would love to read that book!

  • BIGMac November 20, 2008, 10:14 am

    mmmmm free books

  • Chris November 20, 2008, 3:33 pm

    So skipping over dollars to get to the dimes won’t work either?

  • 2005Nrk November 20, 2008, 4:40 pm

    Interesting. I’d love to win a copy!

  • Erick November 20, 2008, 6:23 pm

    Sign me up!

  • Oscar November 20, 2008, 6:42 pm

    i would like to read this book. So , please sign me up…

  • Pinkmel November 20, 2008, 7:55 pm

    Sounds interesting…would love to get another view on money

  • Brian November 20, 2008, 8:57 pm

    Looks good. Count me in.

  • crazyqqq November 21, 2008, 4:06 am

    I want it… so badly…

  • MarS November 21, 2008, 1:58 pm

    Perfect, timely, I need to know more about how to make my money back and how to act on investment loan call backs that I can’t afford to pay back without cashing in investments.
    This would be an interesting read !

  • Arjun R. November 21, 2008, 3:07 pm

    Sounds like a good read …Count me in,