The Real Way to achieve anything

Total Recall: Arnold Schwarzenegger

  • “There was no plumbing, shower, and no flushing toilet, just a kind of chamber pot. The nearest well was almost a quarter mile away, and even when it was raining hard or snowing, one of us had to go.” Like many other successful people, Arnold had to rise out of the ashes.
  • On his father, “His answer to life was discipline. We had a strict routine that nothing could change… and we had to earn our breakfast doing sit-ups.” Discipline yourself if no one else is, that way you won’t fall off your path. Perhaps develop a good morning routine and stick to it, it’s the best way to start your day and feel in control. Arnold’s father was rewiring Arnold’s brain, to associate pain with reward— to eat he had to endure physical activity. This was instilled into Arnold and is part of the reason why he’d go on to be successful. He understood that to get what he wanted he had to overcome something tough.
  • More on his father, “In the evening we had to write a report on our activities, ten pages at least… and if we had spelled a word wrong, we had to copy it fifty times over.” Insane discipline, Arnold was being taught that you have to get it right or you must go away and practice. Also, Arnold’s brain was being trained to avoid little mistakes because they’d cost him time and energy.
  • Cont… “He let me know that there was always room for improvement. A lot of sons would’ve been crippled by his demands, but instead the discipline rubbed off on me. I turned it into drive.” Arnold was being taught to understand ‘Opportunity cost and the Endowment Effect’. You should never get too complacent with what you already have. For example, when Arnold was began bodybuilding he had a great body and could have proud of it. But he knew that OTHER people had far better bodies and they were getting titles like Mr Universe. So he was LOSING OUT on being Mr Universe. And that is what fueled him.
  • On competition with his older brother, “Super-competitive the way brothers are — always trying to outdo each other… he usually won these head-to-head competitions… I was always on the lookout for ways to gain the advantage.” Arnold understood life is competition. Even at a biological level, it’s survival of the fittest and most adaptable. For most people, competition is job places, university places, places in a sports team etc. And the winner is the one with the cutting edge advantage. It’s simple if you have a rare skill, knowledge, talent, have strong connections etc etc. Your chances of winning the competition are exponentially greater. So get as many cutting edges as you can: I can’t recall the source but it’s all about — What You Know, Who You Know and Who Knows You. Arnold would go on to become great friends with top body-builder and then with numerous influential people in America as he moved towards his movie and political career.
  • When he pondered, “I knew I would be the best at something — although I didn’t know what — America was the most powerful country, so I would go there.” He was very aware that he needed a destiny, and he knew where he had to realize it.
  • “It was a tough time all round. Hardships were routine. Dentists did not use anesthesia, for instance. When you grow up in that kind of harsh environment, you never forget how to withstand physical punishment, even long after the hard times end.”

Because this is a long book, full of Golden Nuggets. I’ll give the most important nugget found. To get what you want, you need, ‘To do more reps and sets, and cover more mileage than anyone else.’ REPS & SETS. Training. To get what you want, you need to deserve what you want, and it’s he who trains the most that gets it.

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