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20 Saddening but Inspiring Quotes from ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’

20 Saddening but Inspiring Quotes from ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’

Close your eyes for a moment and picture being stripped of everything you have ever known. You and your family are brutally robbed of every possession you have worked so hard for and you are forced to wear a symbol on your arm that brands you as inferior. People call you names, physically attack you or even kill you without a cause. They say your value as a human being is equal to the value of a sewer rat.

Your friends have been taken from their homes and many have been exterminated. There are rumors about death camps where people like you are being mass murdered by gasing. You are hiding, but you know it is only a matter of time before you and your family are taken to be killed. There is no one to turn to. Everyone is your enemy. Everyone hates you. How do you survive? How do you save your loved ones from impending death?

This horrific scenario is not fictional. The Jewish people were subjected to these and other horrors by the Nazi regime under the control of Adolf Hitler during World War II. Otto Frank was one such Jewish man who was forced to take his family into hiding to save them from certain death at the hands of the Nazi. His youngest daughter, Annelies Marie Frank, better known as Anne Frank, kept a diary all the while her family was in hiding for 26 months, living in darkness and quiet to avoid being caught.

The diary of a young Jewish girl.

Diary of a Young Girl

    On 4 August 1944 the Frank family, along with four other people hiding in the annex on Prinsengracht in Amsterdam, were arrested and dragged off to the Auschwitz death camp following an anonymous tip given to the police. Anne’s diary, ‘The Diary of Anne Frank,’ recounting her thoughts and struggles in hiding was later recovered and first published in America in 1952, two years after her death at the age of 15.

    Over the years, Anne’s powerful words and insights have offered comfort and bravery to millions of people living amid war, violence, bigotry and fear. Her diary, one among many such collections of diaries and letters dealing with the war, still stands out as one of the most profound to date.

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    The death of a brilliantly gifted young writer.

    Anne died at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, located in what is today Lower Saxony in northern Germany, in 1945 of Typhus, not long after her sister Margot who was 19. What makes this real life story sadder is the knowledge that had the Frank family remained hidden six weeks longer they would likely have survived the war. That’s because that part of the Netherlands was liberated the first two weeks of September. You have to wonder what Anne, a brilliantly gifted young writer and thinker, would have become if she were allowed to grow up into adulthood.

    Remembering the people who perished in the Holocaust.

    Let us always remember and honor Anne, her family and the millions of other men, women and children—both Jewish and non-Jewish—who suffered unspeakable cruelty under Nazi Germany and died in the Holocaust. What better way to do just that than to highlight some of the most saddening yet inspiring and uplifting quotes from the diary of Anne Frank? The innocence, courage and hope in this young girl’s words give us the chills, but still comfort and inspire us today—seven decades later.

    “I live in a crazy time.”

    “It’s difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams and cherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grim reality. It’s really a wonder that I haven’t dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart.”

    Anne Frank writing in her diary

      “Everyone has inside of him a piece of good news. The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! How much you can love! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is!”

      “I don’t want to have lived in vain like most people. I want to be useful or bring enjoyment to all people, even those I’ve never met. I want to go on living even after my death!”

      “Would anyone, either Jew or non-Jew, understand this about me, that I am simply a young girl badly in need of some rollicking fun?”

      “I don’t think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains.”

      “We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.”

      “Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.”

      “Whoever is happy will make others happy.”

      Anne happy

        “Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”

        “Riches can all be lost, but that happiness in your own heart can only be veiled, and it will still bring you happiness again, as long as you live. As long as you can look fearlessly up into the heavens, as long as you know that you are pure within, and that you will still find happiness.”

        “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

        “There’s only one rule you need to remember: laugh at everything and forget everybody else! It sounds egotistical, but it’s actually the only cure for those suffering from self-pity.”

        “I’ve found that there is always some beauty left – in nature, sunshine, freedom, in yourself; these can all help you. Look at these things, then you find yourself again, and God, and then you regain your balance.”

        “Although I’m only fourteen, I know quite well what I want, I know who is right and who is wrong. I have my opinions, my own ideas and principles, and although it may sound pretty mad from an adolescent, I feel more of a person than a child, I feel quite independent of anyone.”

        Anne-Frank-1-500x375c

          “People can tell you to keep your mouth shut, but that doesn’t stop you from having your own opinion. Even if people are still very young, they shouldn’t be prevented from saying what they think.”

          “In the long run, the sharpest weapon of all is a kind and gentle spirit.”

          “Human greatness does not lie in wealth or power, but in character and goodness. People are just people, and all people have faults and shortcomings, but all of us are born with a basic goodness.”

          “As long as this exists, this sunshine and this cloudless sky, and as long as I can enjoy it, how can I be sad?”

          “He who has courage and faith will never perish in misery!”

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          David K. William

          David is a publisher and entrepreneur who tries to help professionals grow their business and careers, and gives advice for entrepreneurs.

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          Last Updated on March 30, 2020

          What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

          What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

          Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

          You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

          This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

          What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

          According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

          Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

          There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

          How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

          When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

          Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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          1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

          One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

          The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

          Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

          2. Be Honest

          A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

          If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

          On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

          Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

          3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

          Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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          If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

          4. Succeed at Something

          When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

          Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

          5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

          Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

          Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

          If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

          If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

          Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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          6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

          Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

          You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

          On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

          You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

          7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

          Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

          Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

          Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

          When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

          Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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          In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

          Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

          It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

          Final Thoughts

          When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

          The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

          Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

          Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

          Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

          More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

          Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

          Reference

          [1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
          [2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
          [3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
          [4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
          [5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
          [6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
          [7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
          [8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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