Arnold Schwarzenegger 6 Rules for Success

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Success

Arnold Schwarzenegger (born 1947) is an internationally famous Austrian-American actor, filmmaker, businessman, author, philanthropist, activist, politician, and former professional bodybuilder and powerlifter. Undisputed champion, he won the Mr. Olympia contest seven times, and is considered to be one of the greatest bodybuilders of all-time.

Arnolds Schwarzenegger’s life continues to be an inspiration to millions of people around the world! I am a big fan myself, watched all his movies and read his books. I love his action hero character, but to me he’s more than a movie star. He’s been my teacher! His book has practically saved my life! Besides winning in a natural Bodybuilding Competition in record time, I transformed depression into my dream life! Read my story in my blog How Arnold Schwarzenegger Inspired me Win! I even painted a portrait of my hero as an expression of gratitude – check out my Story Behind Arnold Schwarzenegger Portrait.

Stay hungry is one of Arnold’s famous sayings when it comes to success. Schwarzenegger traveled an extraordinary road, lined with abundant triumphs, any one of which might have satisfied a more modest appetite. As an athlete, he was named “Mr. Olympia” a record six times, becoming the fitness tsar. As an actor, he became an internationally recognized action hero who created one of the most memorable characters in film history – “The Terminator.” As a businessman, he combined instinct, risk-taking, and relentless salesmanship to accumulate a financial portfolio. As a politician, he was twice elected governor of California. You do not put this assortment of trophies on your mantle unless you are smart, flexible, seriously focused, and manically driven. Check out some tips on How to Sharpen Your Creative Edge.

Arnold Schwarzenegger broke the internet with this motivational & inspirational speech given during the Governor’s 2009 USC Commencement Address. I have been applying Arnold’s rules to my art business and this is my interpretation as an artist. If you have tried your dream business and feel like quitting or giving up, this speech will make you rethink your perspective and get back on track.

1) Have a Vision

When you have a goal everything becomes easy.
Visualizing your goal and going after it makes it fun! You got to have a purpose no matter what you do.

The first rule of success as an artist is to form a vision. You can have the best education and materials, you can have the best galleries in the world, but if you haven’t figured out what is your UNIQUE VISION is, you’ll never make a mark in the history of art.

No matter how unique or traditional your art may be, you need to trust yourself and pursue it until it is commercially viable. You can’t listen to the naysayers or follow the path of your parents or other successful artist, but rather discover your own style.

Having long and short-term goals as a artist is crucial. When you are frustrated or tired, just remember every brushstroke, every show, every mundane activity contributes to you becoming great. Trust yourself to form your unique vision and to paint what you enjoy. Some of my favorite successful contemporary artists who are shaping the current art scene are John Currin, Cesar Santos, Kehinde Wiley.

2) Don’t Listen To The Naysayers

You will have a lot of people that will tell you that it can’t be done or that you can’t do something.  You need to ignore them and decide to go after what you want anyways.  If you believe them, then you won’t get anywhere in life. “Don’t listen to the peanut gallery”, as Abraham Hicks sais.

Whenever someone said to me it can’t be done, I heard it can be done!
When they say no I heard yes. They said it is not impossible, I heard it is possible! I’m a strong believer what Nelson Mandela said that everything is always impossible until someone does it!

3) Break The Rules

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?

You have to be willing to step outside of the box and try something different.  For Arnold, he had to go against the norm in the movie industry as he didn’t fit the criteria of a movie star.  All of the agents turned him down at first saying that his body was overly sized, he had an accent that nobody could understand, and his last name was nearly impossible to pronounce.  But that didn’t stop him, and eventually those liabilities turned out to be assets for him and have made him famous for who he is today. Sure enough, Arnold became the highest paid actor in Hollywood and is world famous because of the fact that was different from others.

Does the story of Damien Hirst come to mind with his deliberately provocative art installations exploring the taboo of mortality, beauty and technology? 

3) Don’t Be Afraid To Fail – No Plan B

There’s nothing wrong with failing. You have to fail in order to climb that ladder. There’s no one that doesn’t fail, we all fail, it’s okay. What is not okay is that when you fail, you stay down. Whoever stays down is a loser and winners will fail and get up.

Even though Arnold is a massive success, he’s had many failures along the way.  He’s lost bodybuilding championships, has made some horrible movies, made waves as Governor of California, and his personal life has been under public scrutiny.  One thing that he mentions is that none of the success would have been possible for him if he was fearful of failure.  It’s because of Arnold’s confidence and belief in himself to take risks that has made him successful.
As artists, we can’t shoot for a being good, mediocre, marginally successful artists. I think it’s Okay to want to be a great artist!

5) Work like Hell & Advertise!

Early to Bed, Early to Raise, Work like Hell and Advertise!

To achieve any amount of success in life, you need to work hard.  Arnold Schwarzenegger is notorious for his inhuman work ethic.  I remember reading in his other books about how he would workout for hours out of the day, work his physical labour brick-laying job, and attend business courses at university all at the same time.  He slept only 6 hours a night and worked extremely hard to achieve his success.

As the world of selling art is getting comfortable with buying art online, I am starting to understand the importance of Social Media and Marketing. I prefer the notion of Sharing is Caring. As artists it’s easy and addicting for us to focus in isolation, however, sharing art, beauty and a philosophical vision has been a big part of every thriving artist.

Instagram has become an online portfolio platform for artists. Great way to promote your blogs or events on your artist’s website and Facebook Pages have also been a successful platform for the artist’s to show their work on a more personal level.

 6) Give Back

Arnold’s final rule is about giving back.  He believes that in any path you take in life, you must always find a way to give back to your community, to your state, or your country.  He talks about reaching out to help people bringing immense satisfaction and joy to ones life, more than success itself. It’s quite touching to hear Arnold say that as an immigrant he has experienced the generosity in America firsthand and was embraced with open arms. What is amazing is that he actually gives a lot back, just like he said. Arnold’s Schwarzenegger’s charity list is impressive, he’s best known for his work with Special Olympics World Games and helping the inner-city kids with his Inner City Games Foundation.

Who Inspires You?

Thanks for reading! It feel very easy to follow these 6 rules, however, it helps to refresh your vision, purpose and contribution to human race. If you are a business owner, business executive, artist, bodybuilder or were inspired to never give up and always focus on success, I want to hear your story! Who inspires you to success? Comment below.

Leave a Comment