By Roxanne Pearce

I was lucky enough to be a guest at a lunch event held in Toronto January 26, 2011where Arnold Schwarzenegger was the guest speaker.

I thought I’d share a few toplines that i managed to capture from his speech.

I am embarrassed to admit that I did not know the key accomplishments of this man’s life:

He was the youngest man ever to become Mr. Universe — a title he won 13 times

He then built off that to become a leading actor; and a very successful businessperson.

Finally, he was elected to two terms as the Governor of California — which, as he pointed out, is the 8th largest economy in the world.

Arnold is a great believer in the power of a Vision.

He encouraged us to take the time to think, and develop a clear and specific vision.

He admitted that whatever he does, he becomes fanatical about — and goes all out in pursuit of all his goals.

He mentioned a t-shirt that his wife Maria Shriver wears often, and that he quite likes. The slogan on the shirt is “Well Behaved Women Rarely Make History”. I wish i had that shirt when I was a teenager!

He also believes that mavericks are often successful — but never follow rules.

He urged us to ignore the naysayers — don’t let them derail you.

When he was a successful body builder and wanted to become a leading actor, a prominent agent pointed out his three obstacles and why he would never play a lead role.

Arnold, of course turned each liability into an asset:

A body builder’s physique — seek the right role (e.g. Conan series)

An accent — the executive producer of Terminator said “great, he already sounds like a machine”

a weird name — odd names may be hard to say, but they are also hard to forget.

Some of Arnold’s truisms and guiding principles:

Arnold believes that each day has 24 hours — we only need 6 hours of sleep. What are you doing with the other 18?

Don’t be afraid to fail — fear of failure is a noose around your neck.

Arnold uses the term “girly man”  to describe a politician that is overly cautious and accomplishments very little because they are afraid of failing.

When firefighters fail they die — what are you afraid of?

Work like hell.

Seek the opportunity, not the handout.

He quoted Ted Turner: Early to bed; early to rise. Work like hell and advertise.

Avoid the short cuts:

If you don’t like your waistline — go to the gym, and eat the right foods. Lyposuction is an $18,000 shortcut.

As you mature…

Tear down the mirror; see beyond the mirror— You will see the millions that need help.

At the end of your life, you will be judged: Not by what you made, but by what you gave.

As a political figure he prides himself on being a public servant, not a party servant.

He reiterated on several occasions the importance of vision,  and that whoever leads the US needs to have a clear vision and be a great leader.

A few quotes from the questions that were posed by Frank McKenna after Arnold’s speech:

He never wanted to fool people into thinking he is not who he really is: Even though there are many that disapprove, he wears boots made of alligator; he drives a Hummer; and he smokes Cuban cigars.

On the economy: He does not believe in “Ballot Box Budgeting”, and stood firm even when tough and unpopular decisions had to be made to cut spending. 

When asked if he thinks the law should be changed so that he can run for the Presidency, he said the he WOULD run, if he could, but he is not going to complain about the one thing he can’t do in a country that provided him with all the opportunities that the US gave him.

He believes the law SHOULD be changed, but not for him — it should be changed because its different world and a global economy — its time.

And finally he promised “I’ll be back”!