Living with the legend: Arnold Schwarzenegger’s recipe to success

October 10, 2014

Read time 2 min

If it wasn’t obvious to everyone at Nordic Business Forum 2014 before, it certainly is now. Mister Arnold Schwarzenegger is not only a legendary bodybuilder and the father of undying one-liners: he’s also an inspiring speaker, extremely driven businessman and renowned politician.

The living legend took the stage at Messukeskus as the last keynote of yesterday’s conference. He starts off with a story of his first time in Helsinki in the 70s: he was selling vitamins, minerals and protein powder at Stockmann. We’ve obviously come a long way from that. When Arnold speaks, everybody listens.

– People tend to ask me one simple question: what is the key to success. Well, here’s a short version: you only have to have extreme biceps, be able to save the human race and have an Austrian accent.

– Today I’m here to give you the longer version of that same advice. These are my five rules to make you successful in anything you choose to pursue, be it business, politics or bodybuilding.

Mister Schwarzenegger backs up the five pieces of advice with colorful anecdotes he has picked up along the way of his career as a movie star, title-winning bodybuilder and California’s 38th Governor.

Everything comes down to Arnold’s life philosophy: always stay hungry. The key points to being succesful, s’il vous plaît.

  1. Find your vision. Know where you’re going; if your vision isn’t clear, you’ll drift around endlessly like an airplane without a pilot. True commitment to a vision should never be underestimated.
  2. Never, ever think small. If you want to accomplish something, shoot for the stars. Arnold doesn’t have the patience for small goals; neither should you. Small goals take up the same amount of energy as dreaming big; wenn schon, denn schon!
  3. Ignore the naysayers. Turn impossible into possible – in fact, eliminate ‘impossible’ from your vocabulary. People might try to take you down, but you should just go ahead and ignore them. Turn liabilities into assets.
  4. Work your ass off. None of these pieces of advice will be helpful if you’re not willing to work hard. You don’t ever want to fail because you didn’t work hard enough. Is your excuse that you don’t have enough time? “If you sleep for six hours, there are still 18 hours left in your day to accomplish things. If six hours isn’t enough – sleep faster!” Yessir.
  5. Give back. Take responsibility, break that mirror you’re staring at and start looking at people around you. Serve the community around you.

Cue standing ovations.

PS. We had the pleasure of hosting a special event with Arnold after his speech. Thank you everybody for joining us in this once-in-a-lifetime experience!


Photos: Robert Lindström

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