Whether you go to her concert as a fanatic teenage fan or a “sacrificial” parent, one thing is for certain: Taylor swift inspires.
Honored as one of Time magazines “100 Most Influential People”, T-Swift has made her mark. Not only on the music industry, where she’s the recipient of seven Grammys along with a slew of other prestigious awards — but on all our hearts as well, recently becoming the most followed person on Instagram. Yes, she’s more followed than the President of the United States and the Kardashians. That’s saying something! Perhaps it’s her raw lyrics, her authenticity, and her passion to make the world a better place, but there’s no better role model out there for teenage girls.
At fourteen years old, Swift moved to Nashville, Tennesee to pursue a career in music. She became the youngest singer-songwriter ever hired by the Sony/ATV Music Publishing House, and has gone on to sell more than forty million albums.
Radiant in wisdom and poise, Swift instills fearlessness, a strong work ethic, and abundant heart into everything she says and does. Here are nine of her most influential quotes to inspire and motivate us to work harder.
1. “Life is like walking — you take one step at a time.”
Most things in life don’t come easy. The sooner we understand this, the faster we’ll roll up our sleeves and get to work. Every single decision we make either propels us toward ours dreams or away from them. So the next time we find ourselves sitting around, waiting for a fairy godmother or a magical lamp — we should get up and do something productive for our dream. Taylor Swift wouldn’t be the success she is today if she never practiced on her guitar or sang in local restaurants and bars. Everyone has to start somewhere, and the first step is a willingness to put in the time and hard work. The rest — baby steps.
Put one foot in front of the other in pursuit of your dreams.
2. “Never believe anyone who says you don’t deserve what you want.”
In other T-Swift words, “Haters gonna hate.” We should expect some jealousy, some envy from others, then laugh it off. We DO deserve what we want — we deserve the best. People who say otherwise aren’t worthy of our time or energy.
So ignore them, push on, and surround yourself with people who believe in you, who inspire you, and who love you just as you are and are yet to be.
3. “Lost your balance on a tightrope. It’s never too late to get it back.”
Following our dreams often feels like we’re walking on a frail, wobbly, rope. Sometimes all it takes is one bad step, one slip-up and we’re face-first on the ground listening to the hater’s boo. But what separates the dreamers from the bitters is they get back up and start again — and again — until they find their balance. Taylor Swift kept singing until a record label would give her a chance.
So, dust yourself off and get back on the rope. Maybe next time you’ll make it a little bit farther than you did before.
4. “So don’t you worry your pretty little mind. People throw rocks at things that shine.”
People are intimidated by success. Why? It’s human nature. We all have a desire to be known, to be recognized, to be seen. When we’re overshadowed by those around us, it’s easy to get resentful and be jealous, even when we care about the person (and especially when we don’t).
What we need to remember is that we’re all on this journey together. When someone else is in the spotlight, applaud. When we’re in the spotlight, enjoy it, then use our influence to help others shine. But we shouldn’t worry or let someone’s jealousy bring us down.
5. “There are two ways you can get through pain. You can let it destroy you, or you can use it as fuel to drive you: to dream bigger, work harder.”
In interviews, Taylor often talks about her pain from being bullied and left out in high school. Yet, because she wasn’t invited to parties, she stayed home and played guitar until her ‘fingers bled’. I’m sure there was moping and lots of tears, but she harnessed her pain through music. This helped not only her to heal, but millions of others suffering.
So we shouldn’t let pain get the final say in our lives. Instead, we should use it to motivate us: Push harder, rise higher, and loosen pain’s deadly grip.
6. “Shake it off.”
Studies show that people who can “shake it off” are more likely to reach their goals than people who dwell on their problems. Which is why resiliency, the ability to bounce back, adjust, and cope with life’s disappointments is key to Swift’s success — to all our success.
So, the next time you feel like calling it quits: Blast the music, dance around the kitchen table, and shake the worries off. It will allow you to relieve some stress and be far more productive.
7. “So this is me swallowing my pride. Standing in front of you saying, ‘I’m sorry.'”
Sometimes our best ideas come from others. Hard work often requires us to let go of our egos and listen to others’ advice — to be open and willing to new ideas and new ways of doing things. Believe it or not, we’re not always right. And when we make a mistake, it’s critical that we’re honest. Sometimes the biggest obstacle standing in the way of our dreams is ourselves.
So, swallow that pride and use the expertise of others to make your work the very best it can be.
8. “I’m intimidated by the fear of being average.”
Aspire for greatness, and don’t settle for less. I’m reminded of a quote by Les Brown that says, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”
9. “FEARLESS is not the absence of fear. It’s not being completely unafraid. To me, FEARLESS is having fears. FEARLESS is having doubts. Lots of them. To me, FEARLESS is living in spite of those things that scare you to death.”
We should never let fear prevent us from reaching our goals. It takes a tremendous amount of courage to step toward our dreams. There will be haters and tightropes and a slew of other challenges in our way. But none of these things stopped Swift. Nor should they stop you.
Live life. Be fearless.
Featured photo credit: Taylor Swift-Shake it off/Boom Big via flickr.com