Never underestimate the power of words.
They can inspire us, influence our decisions, and even change our entire outlook on a subject. A single sentence may resonate with a reader on such a level that it can undo years of hurt and heal old wounds, or it may bring about incredible introspection and awareness, leading to change and growth. Words spoken by prominent people have spurred people into action for thousands of years, and there are many people who owe their greatest successes and personal epiphanies to quotes they’ve read.
Hopefully some of the ones compiled below will resonate with you as well, and if they do, feel free to share them. If some of them happen to be about one particular gender or another, please don’t be put off: the sentiments can be applied to those of any gender, age, or faith.
“Nothing ever happened in the past that can prevent you from being present now, and if the past cant prevent you from being present now, what power does it have?”
– Eckhart Tolle
“Does anything in nature despair except man? An animal with a foot caught in a trap does not seem to despair. It is too busy trying to survive. It is all closed in, to a kind of still, intense waiting. Is this a key? Keep busy with survival. Imitate the trees. Learn to lose in order to recover, and remember that nothing stays the same for long, not even pain, psychic pain. Sit it out. Let it all pass. Let it go.”
– May Sarton
“You are Life passing through your body, passing through your mind, passing through your soul. Once you find that out, not with logic, not with the intellect, but because you can feel that Life—you find out that you are the force that makes the flowers open and close, that makes the hummingbird fly from flower to flower. You find out that you are in every tree, and you are in every animal, vegetable, and rock. You are that force that moves the wind and breathes through your body. The whole universe is a living being that is moved by that force, and that is what you are. You are Life.”
– Don Miguel Ruiz
“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”
– Frank Herbert, Dune
“Life is to be lived. If you have to support yourself, you had bloody well better find some way that is going to be interesting. And you don’t do that by sitting around, wondering about yourself.”
– Katharine Hepburn
“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”
– Leonardo da Vinci
“There is nothing more beautiful than seeing a person being themselves. Imagine going through your day being unapologetically you.”
– Steve Maraboli
“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.”
– Richard Bach
“I am thankful for all of those who said NO to me. Its because of them I’m doing it myself.”
– Albert Einstein
“The lotus is the most beautiful flower, whose petals open one by one. But it will only grow in the mud. In order to grow and gain wisdom, first you must have the mud—the obstacles of life and its suffering. The mud speaks of the common ground that humans share, no matter what our stations in life. Whether we have it all or we have nothing, we are all faced with the same obstacles: sadness, loss, illness, dying and death. If we are to strive as human beings to gain more wisdom, more kindness and more compassion, we must have the intention to grow as a lotus and open each petal one by one. ”
– Goldie Hawn
“It’s not enough to have lived.
We should be determined to live for something.
May I suggest that it be creating joy for others,
sharing what we have for the betterment of personkind,
bringing hope to the lost and love to the lonely.”
– Leo Buscaglia
“Often misconstrued, authenticity is not about being an open book, revealing every detail of yourself without rhyme or reason. It is simply the act of openly and courageously seeing what needs to be seen, saying what needs to be said, doing what needs to be done, and becoming that which you are intent on being.”
– Scott Edmund Miller
“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.”
– Roald Dahl
“The greatness of a man can nearly always be measured by his willingness to be kind.”
– G. Young
“Never again clutter your days or nights with so many menial and unimportant things that you have no time to accept a real challenge when it comes along. This applies to play as well as work. A day merely survived is no cause for celebration.”
– Og Mandino
“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”
– J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
“Every time you do a good deed you shine the light a little farther into the dark. And the thing is, when you’re gone, that light is going to keep shining on, pushing the shadows back.”
– Charles de Lint
“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.
So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.
Make your mistakes, next year and forever.”
– Neil Gaiman