Love him or hate him, Arnold Schwarzenegger has truly done it all – the epitome of a rags-to-riches, self made man.
He grew up in Austria in a poor, and by what many today would call abusive household. But although he wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth, he’s gone on to accomplish some pretty incredible things.
– Won Mr. Universe at age 20 – the youngest winner in history.
– Won the Mr. Olympia contest 7 times, and Mr. Universe 5 times.
– He has acted in 54 movies that have grossed over $3 billion at the box office.
– Married a Kennedy (divorced now, but still).
– Became Governor of California and served 2 terms.
He is also a businessman, investor, philanthropist, author, and public speaker.
He gave a great commencement speech at USC in 2009, and at the end gave 6 of his rules for success. Here they are paraphrased.
1. Trust Yourself
Trust yourself, dig deep down and ask yourself: who do you want to be?. Not what, but who. Not what your parents or teachers wants you to be, but you. Figure out for yourself, what makes you happy, no matter how crazy it may sound to the people.
2. Break The Rules
We have so many rules in life about everything, I say break the rules. It is impossible to be a maverick or true original if you are too well behaved and not break the rules. You have to think outside the box. What is the point of being on this world if all you want is to be liked by everyone and avoid trouble. The only way that I ever got any place was by breaking some of the rules
3. Don’t Be Afraid To Fail
Anything that I’ve ever attempted I was always willing to fail. You can’t always win, but don’t be afraid of making decisions. You can’t be paralyzed by fear of failure or you will never push yourself. You keep pushing because you believe in yourself and in your vision, and you know that it is the right thing to do, success will come.
4. Don’t Listen To The Naysayers
How many times have you heard: you can’t do this, you can’t do that. It has never been done before. I love it when someone says that no one has ever done that before, because that means that if I do it, that means that I am the first one that has done it. So pay no attention to people that say that it can’t be done.
5. Work Your Butt Off
Leave no stone unturned. Muhammad Ali, one of my greatest hero’s had a great line in the 70’s when he was asked: ‘how many sit ups do you do?’. He said: ‘I don’t count my sit-ups, I only start counting when it starts hurting, when I feel pain is when I start counting, because then it really counts, that’s what makes you a champion’. That’s the way it is with everyting, no pain, no gain.
When you’re out partying or horsing around, remember someone out there at the same time is working hard, someone is getting smarter, remember that! I’ve always figured out that there is 24 hours a day, you sleep 6 hours. That means you have 18 hours left. I know that some of you out there answers: ‘wait a minute I sleep 8 or 9 hours’. Well, than sleep faster I would recommend.
6. Give Something Back
Whatever path that you take in your life, you must always find time to give something back. Give something back to your community, give something back to your state or your country. Reaching out and helping people will bring you more satisfaction than everything else you’ve ever done!
Full Arnold Schwarzenegger USC Commencement Address
Featured image via Flickr