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Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech

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Arnold Schwarzenegger is well know all over the world and surely a true success story we all can learn from.

This man succeed in every venture he choose to join. Being a truly source of inspiration and motivation for millions of people. 

From bodybuilding to acting, from acting to politics, he did it all. Conquer the unconquerable it's an expression that really fits Arnold's life achievements.

In 2009 at his USC Commencement Speech he took time to share some of his "rules of success" in an epic speech that will inspire generations to come.

Arnold pinpoints 6 rules on how to be successful. It starts at minute 08:15.



We've enjoyed the full speech and it's always wonderful to listen to the mindset of successful and inspiring people, like Arnold Schwarzenegger, when they're facing adversity or life obstacles.

You can really relate to them and in this case apply some principles or rules to your own world. If motivation is needed in your life, this is the success speech you need to listen!

We present you the six rules of success full transcription below and our short analysis about each rule:

Dr. Schwarzenegger Six Rules of Success:


1. Rule Number One: Trust Yourself

"And what I mean by that is, so many young people are getting so much advice from their parents and from their teachers and from everyone.

But what is most important is that you have to dig deep down, dig deep down and ask yourselves, who do you want to be? Not what, but who.

And I'm talking about not what your parents and teachers want you to be, but you. I’m talking about figuring out for yourselves what makes you happy, no matter how crazy it may sound to other people.

I was lucky growing up because I did not have television or didn't have telephones, I didn't have the computers and the iPods. And, of course, Twitter was then something that birds did outside the window. I didn't have all these distractions and all this.


I spent a lot of time by myself, so I could figure out and listen to what is
inside my heart and inside my head.

And I recognized very quickly that inside my head and heart were a burning desire to leave my small village in Austria -- not that there was something wrong with Austria, it's a beautiful country. But I wanted to leave that little place and I wanted to be part of something big, the United States of America, a powerful nation, the place where dreams can come true.

I knew when I came over here I could realize my dreams. And I decided that the best way for me to come to America was to become a bodybuilding champion, because I knew that was ticket the instant that I saw a magazine cover of my idol, Reg Park. He was Mr. Universe, he was starring in Hercules movies, he looked strong and powerful, he was so confident.


So when I found out how he got that way I became obsessed, and I went home and I said to my family, "I want to be a bodybuilding champion."

Now, you can imagine how that went over in my home in Austria. My parents, they couldn't believe it. They would have been just happy if I would have become a police officer like my father, or married someone like Heidi, had a bunch of kids and ran around like the von Trapp family in Sound of Music.

That's what my family had in mind for me, but something else burned inside me


Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech Quotes: "Something burned inside me. I wanted to be different; I was determined to be unique. I was driven to think big and to dream big."
Something burned inside me. I wanted to be different; I was determined to be unique.
I was driven to think big and to dream big. 

Everyone else thought that I was crazy. My friends said, "If you want to be a champion in a sport, why don't you go and become a bicycle champion or a skiing champion or a soccer champion? Those are the Austrian sports."

But I didn't care. I wanted to be a bodybuilding champion and use that to come to America, and use that to go into the movies and make millions of dollars. So, of course, for extra motivation I read books on strongmen and on bodybuilding and looked at magazines. And one of the things I did was, I decorated my bedroom wall.

Right next to my bed there was this big wall that I decorated all with pictures. I hung up pictures of strongmen and bodybuilders and wrestlers and boxers and so on. And I was so excited about this great decoration that I took my mother to the bedroom and I showed her. And she shook her head. She was absolutely in shock and tears started running down her eyes.

And she called the doctor, she called our house doctor and she brought him in and she explained to him, "There's something wrong here." She looked at the wall with the doctor and she said, "Where did I go wrong? I mean, all of Arnold's friends have pictures on the wall of girls, and Arnold has all these men.

But it's not just men, they're half naked and they're oiled up with baby oil. What is going on here? Where did I go wrong?" So you can imagine, the doctor shook his head and he said, "There's nothing wrong. At this age you have idols and you go and have those -- this is just quite normal."

So this is rule number one. I wanted to become a champion; I was on a mission. So rule number one is, of course, trust yourself, no matter how and what anyone else thinks."

Our take on it: The best person to tell you what's good for you and what's not, is YOU!

You know yourself better than any other person, so why trust what others want for your life or have to say, instead of trusting your true feelings and dreams in the first place?

And, don't just trust yourself in the conceptual stages, trust yourself throughout the process.

2. Rule Number Two: Break The Rules

"We have so many rules in life about everything. I say break the rules. Not the law, but break the rules. My wife has a t-shirt that says, "Well-behaved women rarely make history." Well, you know, I don't want to burst her bubble, but the same is true with men.


It is impossible to be a maverick or a true original if you're too well behaved and
don't want to break the rules. 
You have to think outside the box. That's what I believe.
After all, what is the point of being on this earth if all you want to do is
be liked by everyone and avoid trouble?

"The only way that I ever got anyplace was by breaking some of the rules."
The only way that I ever got anyplace was by breaking some of the rules

After all, I remember that after I was finished with my bodybuilding career I wanted to get into acting and I wanted to be a star in films. You can imagine what the agents said when I went to meet all those agents. Everyone had the same line, that it can't be done, the rules are different here. They said, "Look at your body. You have this huge monstrous body, overly developed. That doesn't fit into the movies. You don't understand.

This was 20 years ago, the Hercules movies. Now the little guys are in, Dustin Hoffman, Woody Allen, Jack Nicholson." Before he gained weight, of course, that is. But anyway, those are the guys that were in. And the agents also complained about my accent. They said, "No one ever became a star with an accent like that, especially not with a German accent.

And yes, I can imagine with your name, Arnold Schwartzenschnitzel, or whatever the name, is, on a billboard. Yeah, that's going to draw a lot of tickets and sell a lot of tickets. Yeah, right." So this is the kind of negative attitude they had.

But I didn't listen to those rules, even though they were very nice and they said, "Look, we can get you some bit parts. We can get you to be playing a wrestler or a bouncer. Oh, maybe with your German accent we can get you to be a Nazi officer in Hogan's Heroes or something like that."

But I didn't listen to all this.

Those were their rules, not my rules.

I was convinced I could do it if I worked as hard as I did in bodybuilding, five hours a day. And I started getting to work, I started taking acting classes. I took English classes, took speech classes, dialogue classes. Accent removal classes I even took.

I remember running around saying, "A fine wine grows on the vine." You see, because Germans have difficulties with the F and the W and V, so, "A fine wine grows on the vine." I know what some of you are now saying, is I hope that Arnold got his money back.

But let me tell you something, I had a good time doing those things and it really helped me. And finally I broke through. I broke through and I started getting the first parts in TV; Streets of San Francisco, Lucille Ball hired me, I made Pumping Iron, Stay Hungry. And then I got the big break in Conan the Barbarian. (Applause)

And there the director said, "If we wouldn't have Schwarzenegger, we would have to build one." Now, think about that. And then, when I did Terminator, "I'll be back," became one of the most famous lines in movie history, all because of my crazy accent.

Now, think about it. The things that the agents said would be totally a detriment and would make it impossible for me to get a job, all of a sudden became an asset for me, all of those things, my accent, my body and everything.

So it just shows to you, never listen to that you can't do something. And, "You have to work your way up, of course, run for something else first." I mean, it was the same when I ran for governor, the same lines, that you have to work your way up, it can't be done. And then, of course, I ran for governor and the rest, of course, is history.

They said you have to start with a small job as mayor and then as assemblyman and then as lieutenant governor and then as governor. And they said that's the way it works in a political career. I said, "I'm not interested in a political career. I want to be a public servant. I want to fix California's problems and bring people together and bring the parties together.

So, like I said, I decided to run, I didn't pay attention to the rules. And I made it and the rest is history. Which, of course, brings me to..."

Our take on it: If you do everything according to the rules, like everybody else does, you'll get the same results most of people gets. Poor results.

This is not a good picture if you want to stand out, and succeed. Notice, Arnold talks breaking some of the rules, not all of them you shouldn't be a 24 hour rebel also.

3. Rule Number Three: Don't Be Afraid To Fail

"Anything I've ever attempted, I was always willing to fail. In the movie business, I remember, that you pick scripts. Many times you think this is a wining script, but then, of course, you find out later on, when you do the movie, that it didn't work and the movie goes in the toilet.

Now, we have seen my movies; I mean, Red Sonja, Hercules in New York, Last Action Hero. Those movies went in the toilet. But that's OK, because at the same time I made movies like Terminator and Conan and True Lies and Predator and Twins that went through the roof.


Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech Quotes: "You can't always win, but don't afraid of making decisions. You can't be paralyzed by fear of failure or you will never push yourself."
So you can't always win, but don't 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, and success will come. So don't be afraid to fail."

 Our take on it: Fear of failure is one of the top common "success blockers".

Sometimes we think so much in the "cons" that we forget the "pros" of pushing ourselves to do what we got do do. And as a result we don't do nothing, that's what Arnold Schwarzenegger means with "paralyzed by fear".

Don't let this happen concentrate on your goals and just go and do it!

Remember every step forward gets you closer to your goal, even if that step is short, don't worry!

Better start small, than no start at all because of fear of failure.

Also, failing it's part of the success process, you have to fail in order to learn and get more conscious about certain things.

Failures should be taken into consideration as learning experiences that will led to better knowledge and new strategies in your road to success.

Everyone who succeed at some point had to deal with failures, so don't be afraid of it, embrace it.

4. Rule Number Four: Don't Listen To The Nay-Sayers

"How many times have you heard that you can't do this and you can't do that and it's never been done before? Just imagine if Bill Gates had quit when people said it can't be done.

I hear this all the time. As a matter of fact, 


Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech Image Quotes: "I love it when someone says that no one has ever done this before, because then when I do it that means that I'm the first one that has done it."
I love it when someone says that no one has ever done this before, because then when I do it that means that I'm the first one that has done it.


So pay no attention to the people that say it can't be done.

I remember my mother-in-law, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, when she started Special Olympics in 1968 people said that it would not work. The experts, the doctors that specialized in mental disabilities and mental retardation said, "It can't be done. You can't bring people out of their institutions. You can't make them participate in sports, in jumping and swimming and in running. They will hurt themselves, they will hurt each other, they will drown in the pool."

Well, let me tell you something. Now, 40 years later, Special Olympics is one of the greatest organizations, in 164 countries, dedicated to people with mental disabilities and that are intellectually challenged.


And she did not take no for an answer

And the same is when you look at Barack Obama. I mean, imagine, if he would have listened. If he would have listened to the naysayers he would have never run for president. People said it couldn't be done, that he couldn't get elected, that he couldn’t beat Hillary Clinton, that he would never win the general election.


But he followed his own heart, he didn’t listen to the 
"You can't," and he changed the course of American history.

So over and over you see that. If I would have listened to the naysayers I would still be in the Austrian Alps yodeling.  I would never have come to America. I would have never met my wonderful wife Maria Shriver, I would have never had the wonderful four kids, I would have never done Terminator, and I wouldn't be standing here in front of you today as governor of the greatest state of the greatest country in the world.


So I never listen that, "You can't." I always listen to myself and say, "Yes, you can.""

Our take on it: People are always talking, the most important person you have to listen to is YOU.

Most times, people's opinions are not aligned with your goals and dreams, because they're YOUR goals and dreams, not theirs! 

So, negative comments will always be around you, what you have to do is ignore them.

Don't mistake "naysayers" from advisers, advisers are those people in your circle of influences that can help you to get better by analyzing your work and giving you tips.

5. Rule Number One: Work Your But Off


"...the most important rule of all: Work your butt off


You never want to fail because you didn't work hard enough. 

I never wanted to lose a competition or lose an election because I didn't work hard enough. I always believed leaving no stone unturned.

Mohammed Ali, one of my great heroes, had a great line in the '70s 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, that's when I start counting, because that's when it really counts."

That's what makes you a champion. Arnold Scvhwarzenegger in Kindergarten Cop And that's the way it is with everything. 

No pain, no gain.

So many of those lessons that I apply in life I have learned from sports, let me tell you, and especially that one.  And let me tell you, it is important to have fun in life, of course. But when you're out there partying, horsing around, someone out there at the same time is working hard.


Someone is getting smarter and someone is winning. 

Just remember that. Now, if you want to coast through life, don't pay attention to any of those rules.


Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech Image Quotes: "If you want to win, there is absolutely no way around hard, hard work."
But if you want to win, there is absolutely no way around hard, hard work.

None of my rules, by the way, of success, will work unless you do. I've always figured out that there 24 hours a day. You sleep six hours and have 18 hours left. Now, I know there are some of you out there that say well, wait a minute, I sleep eight hours or nine hours. Well, then, just sleep faster, I would recommend. 

Because you only need to sleep six hours and then you have 18 hours left, and there are a lot of things you can accomplish. As a matter of fact, Ed Turner used to say always, "Early to bed, early to rise, work like hell and advertise."

And, of course, all of you know already those things, because otherwise you wouldn't be sitting here today. 


Just remember, you can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets."

Our take on it: This is simple, you have to work hard at what you decide to do.

Most of people who want what you want, are not willing to make sacrifices to achieve that goal. 

So if you work harder than most, you're one step ahead. And here's the interesting part of this topic: 

ANYONE can do this!!! ANYONE can work hard!

You don't need a god given gift or to be born with some kind of special skill, anyone can work hard, you just have to put your mind into it.

Talented people can be beaten by those who are willing to work harder.

6. Rule Number Six: Give Back

"...a very important rule: it's about giving back. Whatever path that you take in your lives, you must always find time to give something back, something back to your community, give something back to your state or to your country.

My father-in-law, Sargent Shriver - who is a great American, a truly great American who started the Peace Corps, the Job Corps, Legal Aid to the Poor - he said at Yale University to the students at a commencement speech: 


"Tear down that mirror. 
Tear down that mirror that makes you always look at yourself,
and you will be able to look beyond that mirror and
you will see the millions of people that need your help."


Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success Speech Image Quotes: "Reaching out and helping people will bring you more satisfaction than anything else you have ever done."
And let me tell you something, reaching out and helping people will bring you more satisfaction than anything else you have ever done

As a matter of fact today, after having worked for Special Olympics and having started After School Programs, I've promoted fitness, and now with my job as governor, I can tell you, playing a game of chess with an eight-year-old kid in an inner city school is far more exciting for me than walking down another red carpet or a movie premiere."

Our take on it: Giving back it's crucial. Here's why: success it's not only about yourself.

You can achieve anything, you can have anything, you can do anything, whatever your definition of success is, but if you're not giving back to someone or something in this world, you'll feel miserable in the long run. 

So success it's no only about yourself, it's about others also. Ask yourself what's the contribution you're giving others by being successful?

7. Summary Of The Six Success Rules: 

"So let me tell you, as you prepare to go off into the world, remember those six rules:
Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules of Success: 1. Trust Yourself; 2. Break The Rules; 3. Don't Be Afraid To Fail; 4. Don't Listen To Naysayers; 5. Work Hard; 6. Give Back.

1. Trust yourself; 

2. Break some rules;

3. Don't be afraid to fail; 

4. Ignore the naysayers;

5. Work like hell, and...

6. Give something back."



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