Published on October 11th, 2023 | by Andrew Paul

Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life Book Review

Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life Book Review Andrew Paul

Summary: Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life is a book for those seeking motivation


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Written by the self-made and living legend Arnold Schwarzenegger, Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life is actually a motivation book by this very influential and powerful man. His take no shit approach gets straight to the point as talks about his life, the successes from other people and more importantly how you the reader could potentially incorporate these strategies into your life. He also admits to sins he has done in life that brings a sense of grounding to his inspiration that like us, he is also flawed but that doesn’t mean you need to lose your visions for the future.

Rest is for babies and relaxation is for retired people

At a young age, Arnold was infatuated by America and his vision was to live in this country and be something more than he could achieve in his home country of Austria. His path to success was his drive and dedication and more importantly a clear vision of what you want to achieve. These seven tools are broken into the following topics;

  1. Have a Clear Vision
  2. Never Think Small
  3. Work Your Ass Off
  4. Sell, Sell, Sell
  5. Shift Gears
  6. Shut Your Mouth, Open your Mind
  7. Break Your Mirrors

At its core, Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life is a pep talk for men but not just any pep talk, rather it’s a pep talk from THE Arnold Schwarzenegger that had me hook, line and sinker. His honestly is quite refreshing and is actually quite down to Earth. He calls out of the bullshit of society and expressively states that this book is no “Secret” or psychological babble but in order to succeed you need the vision and more importantly the hard work to succeed. Although there is an element of psychological in his words.

He also talks about the roadblocks of his life and how he has changed his initial vision of Arnold Schwarzenegger to who he is today. If we change as a person every seven years so has Arnold as this is not Mr Olympia or Mr Action Movie Star or the Governator… no the Arnold of today is a much different person who still vows that his seven tools for life are still as poignant today as they were to that younger man of a different and simpler era.

While the naysayers may object to Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life and that Arnold Schwarzenegger is different to us mere mortal men, the truth is that this man sincerely worked his ass off to get to where he is today. Undeniably he is an overachiever but if you want someone to tell you to get off your ass and work for a better life, this is definitely the man you want in your corner doing just that… drill sergeant Arnold Schwarzenegger who has also dedicated a large chunk of his life to helping others.

Final Thoughts?

Is Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life by Arnold Schwarzenegger relevant for the modern man? Even with the quips and sometimes holier than thou attitude, I would have to say yes. It actually resonates quite well to what is happening in the world and serves as a great pep talk for both men and women to get off their asses. While the audience would be predominantly male, women may also share the same benefits from Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life. The book ends with a reference to Marcus Aurelius’s Meditations that for Arnold was a list of people who have helped him throughout life and notes that it is a list to keep you humble.

Have a vision and have goals to succeed … and yes, now I’m off to the gym!

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