I recently finished reading Total Recall by Arnold Schwarzenegger, this book is his autobiography in which he analyses his journey from being a non-English background Austrian immigrant to becoming the senator of the great state of California.
I loved the book simply because of its raw and unapologetic writing and very relatable examples. He has penned the book very eloquently and dissected all of the main events of his life in great detail and his way of explaining helps you vividly imagine, and I might even say experience what all he has gone through and done.
The best part about Arnold is the way he pays no attention to his emotions when it comes to working hard, most of us cut ourselves some slack or procrastinate when the weather is bad or when we don’t feel like working, there wasn’t a single page or word that signified Arnold's laziness, I must confess I do want to be a person that is full of energy and has no problem in getting things done. He prided himself on being the hardest worker in the room and not giving in to the feeling of laziness.
His thoughts on working your butt off are extravagant which is the least I can say. He passionately believed in working your butt off. He writes the following paragraph in the book.
You never want to fail because you didn’t work hard enough. 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. No pain, no gain. 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. But if you want to win, there is absolutely no way around hard, hard work. Just remember, you can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.
I like the fact that he had realized that the only way to success is hard, hard work, early in his life. The normal people, people like you and me are way too dependent upon motivational messages and stories from people around us to inspire us to work hard. Be like Arnold have blind belief and faith in yourself and your capabilities. Don’t think you can do it, know you can. Only then will you be able to overcome all the issues in your life. Everything starts with the mind, it is your most powerful weapon and it is also the easiest to fool. On your journey to self-mastery and becoming like Arnold, you are going to need some help and I am going to list some of the best practices that I have adopted in my life and some of the issues and obstacles that I have faced and overcome in my relatively small journey.
Issues with Implementation
The common man faces a lot of issues with the implementation of his ideas and plans. Say you plan to start writing a book and you say I will have a finished draft by the end of 2021 and then you end up doing nothing the whole year as you didn’t plan your day or weeks around your larger main goal of writing a book.
In a British study, 248 participants were assigned to three different groups. A control group, which was asked to track how much they exercised over the next two weeks. A second group was told to track how much they exercised and given a motivational message with information about the benefits of exercising. And a third group, who were given the same motivational message as the second group but asked to do one thing differently. To write down when, where, and how they were going to exercise.
The results were quite dramatic. In the first group, 38% exercised. In the second group, 35% exercised. The motivational message didn’t show any effect. But in the third group, the group who were asked where, when, and how they were going to exercise, 91% of participants exercised over the two-week period.
The third group used implementation intentions, which made it a lot easier to take the desired action.
This clearly indicates that being as specific about what you’re going to do, when you’re going to do it and how you’re going to do it makes a ton of a difference in helping you actually do it. So, the next time you’re planning on doing anything that includes consistency like training for a marathon or writing a book, be as specific as possible in all the parameters that are going to help in making this dream become a reality.
Scheduling the Sh*t out of Everything
Reading about how hard Arnold Schwarzenegger works was incredibly inspiring to me. He showed me that no matter how many things you are pursuing in your life, for him these were business, bodybuilding, and acting, you can manage all of it given that you manage your time extremely efficiently.
I’ve always figured out that there 24 hours a day. You sleep for 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.”
The goal is to complete the daily mini-goals that push you in the direction of achieving the bigger goals in your life. For you, it can be running your own start-up, or it could be to become a Gymshark athlete. Only you decide where your time goes and how satisfied are you at the end of the day. So, schedule your day in blocks of one hour and see exactly where your time goes.
Arnold has a “whatever-it-takes” mentality that has helped him succeed. Failure was never an option for him and nor should it be for you. Arnold’s success was due to the vision he held in his mind for what he wanted. Arnold created a grand vision, one that was exciting for him to imagine, and one that was strong enough to pull him through the challenges that he would face to reach his goals.
If you take away anything from this success story it should be this, for a dream to come true, you must first have a vision. Once you’ve locked down your vision, create a plan, and begin demonstrating faith in your dream. To do this, you must follow up your plan with hard work and relentless dedication towards realizing your dreams.