As Arnold Schwarzenegger Turns 75, The Actor Reflects On Advice From His Dad That’s Stuck With Him

Arnold Schwarzenegger as the T800 in Terminator Dark Fate
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

After being in Hollywood for more than five decades, Arnold Schwarzenegger reached the pinnacle of entertainment more than once. But he reached another milestone that is more personal – his 75th birthday. While many celebrities would just celebrate themselves for reaching the milestone day, Schwarzenegger was thinking about the world around him. As his birthday approached, the screen legend reflected on some advice from his dad that stuck with him.

Before entering his 75th year of life, the action legend decided to set goals for himself. Having achieved multiple accomplishments over his decades in the spotlight, the goals for his milestone year were ambitious and grounded. Two objectives stuck out in his official website newsletter from the rest with their simple and sweet purpose. This year, Schwarzenegger wanted to be more kind and promote acts of kindness to celebrate his milestone year.

One way the Terminator star wanted to accomplish these is by committing himself to only things that are useful. While talking about the economy, Arnold Schwarzenegger pointed to Blockbuster not buying a fledging Netflix as an example of not living in the past, but finding one’s purpose even during downtime. He took a shot at the negativity bred by social media and entertainment to make money before pointing out how a quote from his late father helped him find his real purpose. In his words:

My dad always said ‘Be useful, Arnold.’ When I was young, I listened, but it didn’t mean as much as it means now. 75 years of life has taught me that it means everything. Once I realized that I got more joy from training Special Olympics athletes than raising trophies and enjoyed hanging out with kids at after-school programs more than walking red carpets, it all clicked. Being useful gives all of us purpose.

Arnold Schwarzenegger felt using one’s purpose goes beyond the workplace. He even pushed fans to improve themselves through personal activities. The action star proposed they ask “How can I help?” rather than “How can I hurt?”

Spreading kindness is his main goal, as Schwarzenegger referred to a time when he served as a motivator for multiple users on Reddit. His motivational words made such impact users eventually started doing it for each other without his help. The True Lies actor mentioned that social media had made users anti-social before asking fans to take a step back before posting anything negative online. After speaking on combatting online negativity, the Hollywood icon pleaded with followers to spread kindness while thinking about if they were adding to the online toxicity. As he put it:

I want us to realize that real power comes from kindness. Every day, I see examples on the internet of people saying things to other people that they would never, ever say to a live human being. Social media was supposed to bring us all together. That definitely didn’t happen. It’s easy to blame Facebook and Twitter, but it is harder to look into a mirror. An algorithm might show you things that bring out the worst in you, but it can’t actually bring out the worst without your participation. There’s a moment when you can choose how you react, and too many of us blow right through that brief time with our thumbs hammering away to dunk on our imagined enemies.

To promote acts of kindness, the now-75-year-old actor asked followers to go out of their way to be useful to others, including carrying someone’s groceries, aiding stray animals or reading to children. He even suggested they work on their health so they are around longer for their families. Schwarzenegger then reminded readers that the act didn’t have to be grand, but rather impactful in someone’s life.

Promoting kindness for his 75th year seemed a little commendable task. Hopefully, fans will get to see his acts of kindness, much like The Rock’s run of sweet gestures. Small gestures seemed to be on the table as he got a sweet birthday gift from son-is-law Chris Pratt in the form of cigars.

Taking this break was needed after the busy year Arnold Schwarzenegger has had. He is currently filming a new series for Netflix with stars from Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. and The Office as his fellow actors as the Twins sequel Triplets with Danny DeVito is currently postponed after director Ivan Reitman’s death earlier this year. While there’s not much on the Schwarzenegger front for 2022, there are multiple upcoming movies arriving the rest of the year.

Adreon Patterson
News Writer

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).