Learn From Arnie’s Blueprint of Success And Write Your Own Story
A Book Review – Be Useful: Seven Tools For Life
By Arnold Schwarzenegger
How to Be Useful?
Arnold Schwarzenegger: A famous name in the modern world that you cannot ignore. Whether you know him as the muscular Mr. Universe, the ruthless “Terminator,” or California’s governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger is a household name. In his new book, he is “back”, and he returns to teach you how to lead a purposeful life.
As a big fan of Arnold, I have admired him since my childhood. I was captivated by his iconic role as the “Terminator” and have followed his movies, stories, and news ever since. However, I didn’t keep up with Arnold’s political career, and I became skeptical about the content of this book when it was released. However, I was proven wrong.
“Be Useful: Seven Tools For Life” is an exceptional book that everyone must read if they want to make the most of their lives. Arnold shares his invaluable experiences and distills them into seven valuable life lessons. Throughout his journey to success, he overcame numerous obstacles, and now he imparts his wisdom for others to benefit from.
Arnold’s father always asked him to be “useful,” and he considers it the best piece of advice he has ever received. In this book, Arnold aims to provide seven valuable tools that you can embrace and apply in your life to become a “useful person” to the world. These seven tools are as follows:
- Have a Clear Vision
- Never Think Small
- Work Your Ass Off
- Sell, Sell, Sell
- Shift Gears
- Shut Your Mouth, Open Your Mind
- Break Your Mirrors
The structure of this book is straightforward. It comprises of an introduction, a concluding thank-you note, and seven chapters in between. The book spans approximately 263 pages in length.
The links for purchasing the book are paid links via Amazon which we may receive commissions from qualifying purchases.
7 Useful Tools for Life
This self-help book is very well-written. Arnold’s knowledge is conveyed in a concise and straightforward manner. The book avoids complex messages and instead offers simple, unfiltered truths about how to conduct oneself in order to lead a purposeful life.
The core message of the book revolves around the concept of being useful to others.
Arnold emphasizes that you can be useful even by performing small acts of kindness and assistance. He encourages readers to embrace leadership roles, pursue their dreams, and share their valuable ideas to make a positive impact on the world. According to Arnold, it is essential to recognize that your journey has been supported by the assistance of numerous individuals. In Arnold’s own words, he was never a “self-made” man. He emphasized that his success was built upon the foundation of support he received throughout his journey. Therefore, it is crucial to demonstrate humility, gratitude, and a desire to give back.
Now, let’s explore the seven useful tools outlined in the book, one by one:
1) Have a Clear Vision
Arnold suggests that we should form a clear vision of our desired future as early as possible. He outlines two approaches to accomplishing this: thinking big and then refining the details, or starting small and gradually progressing towards a larger plan that aligns with your vision.
Developing a clear life vision is undoubtedly challenging. It requires deep self-awareness and the ability to resist the temptation of going with the flow. The better you know yourself, the easier it becomes to shape our vision and diligently work towards its realization.
2) Never Think Small
When forming our vision, never think small. Arnold’s own journey serves as a testament to this principle.
In the past, he was an unknown boy from Austria with a lengthy surname that posed a challenge for many to pronounce. Despite these initial obstacles, Arnold possessed an unwavering desire to achieve greatness and make a big name out of himself. His aspirations extended beyond mere popularity; he aimed to become an international actor and a global star.
If a stranger on the street were to express such ambitions, most of us would dismiss them as unrealistic dreams that could never be fulfilled. However, Arnold steadfastly refused to think small. He held a clear and grand vision of what he wanted to achieve, and he dared to dream big. Ultimately, through his audacious aspirations, he achieved remarkable success.
There is an old saying, “Shoot for the moon, and even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” While it may sound cliché, it holds a profound truth. It’s crucial for us to set ambitious goals and aim higher, as doing so often propels us to surpass our own expectations and reach heights we unthought of.
3) Work Your Ass Off
This principle is simple and straightforward: to achieve your goals and dreams, you must work exceptionally hard.
Arnold emphasizes that hard work is the sole path to success. There are no shortcuts or quick fixes; you can only achieve your objectives by consistently pushing yourself every single day. Every effort you exert and every drop of sweat you shed matters. Ultimately, your commitment and tireless work ethic will yield results.
The key is to wholeheartedly dedicate yourself to working relentlessly towards your goals.
4) Sell, sell, sell
Arnold’s own experiences serve as a compelling example.
During the 1970s, bodybuilding was a relatively niche activity, known to only a select few. However, Arnold recognized the importance of effectively promoting an idea in order to achieve success. He worked relentlessly to seize every opportunity to spread his ideas about bodybuilding to a wider audience.
By actively engaging with the media, conversing with magazine editors, and leveraging various platforms, Arnold gradually gained increased attention for both himself and the sport of bodybuilding. Now bodybuilding has become to a mainstream international phenomenon, and Arnold’s contributions played a significant role in propelling the sport forward.
The key lesson here is that if you have a great idea that has the potential to benefit a larger group of people, you must actively promote it. No matter how brilliant an idea may be, others will never know about it unless you share it with them. Effective communication and persuasion are essential. You must consistently talk about and sell your idea, repeatedly conveying its value and benefits.
Only through persistent selling can your idea gain traction and reach the desired audience.
5) Shift Gears
Despite having a clear vision, big dreams, working hard work, and engaging in promotion, life can still hit your head like a brick unexpectedly. Often, life can be harsh and not pend out as we envisioned. In light of this, Arnold emphasizes the importance of learning how to “shift gears”.
Shifting gears does not mean giving up on our goals. Rather, it entails positively adapting to changes in our environment or circumstances and making necessary adjustments. Arnold provides examples from his own experience, particularly during his political crises, where he listened to his constituents and adapted his approach accordingly.
Personally, this lesson is utterly important. It serves as a reminder that while pursuing our dreams, we can become so determined and resolute that we may lose sight of whether we are truly on the right path or merely subjectively convinced that we are heading towards our goals. There exists a fine line in distinguishing between the two, and knowing when to shift gears at the appropriate times ensures that we continue moving in the right direction.
By remaining self-aware and open to change, we can effectively navigate the challenges and obstacles that come our way, making adjustments as needed to stay aligned with our desired outcomes.
6) Shut Your Mouth, Open Your Mind
This lesson refers to learning.
Arnold advised that we should think of our brain as a sponge. He encourages us to keep our minds open and actively seek out opportunities to absorb knowledge from wise individuals. Instead of indulging in self-centered and self-affirming conversations, Arnold emphasizes the importance of humility and actively listening to the teachings of those around us. By cultivating an open mind, asking questions, and being prepared to learn, we can acquire wisdom from knowledgeable people.
The willingness to learn and make progress each day is crucial. You can only travel further on your journey and steadily advance toward your desired outcomes if you are willing to learn.
7) Break Your Mirrors
When you look into the mirror, you will only see yourself.
However, when you shatter the mirror in front of you, you will suddenly become aware of the multitude of people standing behind it, eagerly awaiting your assistance.
Arnold proposes that, at a certain point in life, we should transition from a self-centered “me-focus” to a more inclusive “we-focus.” This is because life becomes significantly more meaningful when we shift our attention to helping others rather than solely pursuing our own interests and benefits.
The satisfaction of helping and bringing positive value to others, is something that truly brings happiness and fulfillment. In the long run, it serves as the wellspring of genuine happiness.
The lesson is that when you contemplate the reflection in the mirror, you should now remember the power lies not only in self-reflection. By breaking the mirror in front of you, you have the ability to extend a helping hand to others, for that is where the true essence of happiness resides.
After reading this book, I now ask myself every day, “have I been useful today?”. When the answer had been no, I will make sure I go back to read this book again to go through the 7 tools Arnold offered.
Now equipped with Arnold’s invaluable seven tools for life, I am highly confident that I can become a valuable and beneficial individual to others. The transformation has been truly rewarding, and I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone seeking to bring out their purposes in life.
Thank you for reading, and I look forward to connecting with you again in the next one!
Read “Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life”
The links for purchasing these books are paid links via Amazon which we may receive commissions from qualifying purchases.