Other People’s Words, Not Mine

Oh words, how you come and go like the little minxes you are. I wanted to take the day to write, but after staring at my computer screen for awhile, nothing was coming to me. That’s when I decided to read a book, thinking that perhaps it would spark come creative flame and the words would begin to pour out of me. Sounds reasonable, that happens quite often. It didn’t today. So, the next thing I decided to do was go for a walk because movement makes the brain work too and many a time I have had my best ideas while working out or walking. I had to go to the library anyway so two birds. Nothing. It’s only the afternoon and there are many hours left but since my own words aren’t coming to me I thought it would be a great time to share some quotes and words of wisdom that are my favorites these days in the hope that they resonate with some of you or even bring pen to paper for me. No explanations, just ponder on them and interpret as you see fit.

“The struggle ends when the gratitude begins.”
-Neil Donald Walsh

“Art can save us. Art has the power to render sorrow beautiful, and make loneliness a shared experience, and transform despair into hope… The magic of art is the ability to both capture our pain and deliver it from us at the same time.”
-Brené Brown

“You have to be willing to be misunderstood for long periods of time.”
-Chase Jarvis quoting Jeff Bessos

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly…”
-Theodore Roosevelt

“Give what you have. To someone, it might be better than you dare to think.”
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“Everyday now is an extra day.”
-George Lucas

“I had a professor in college who returned our graded essays, walked up to the chalkboard, and wrote in huge letters: ‘SO WHAT?’ She threw the piece of chalk down and said, ‘Ask yourself that every time you turn in a piece of writing.’ It’s a lesson I never forgot.”
-Austin Kleon

“Traveler, there is no path. The path must be forged as you walk.”
-Antonio Machado

“So much wasted time.”
-David Cassidy’s last words

“If the path ahead of you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s.”
-CS Lewis

“If I only did work while I was inspired, I wouldn’t have very much work.”
-Chase Jarvis quoting Chuck Close (as you can see, I listen to a lot of Chase Jarvis’ podcast)

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”
-Anaïs Nin

“I’m probably hopelessly out of date but my advice is to get real world experience: Be a cowboy. Drive a truck. Join the Marine Corps. Get out of the hyper-competitive ‘life hack’ frame of mind. I’m 74. Believe me, you’ve got all the time in the world. You’ve got 10 lifetimes ahead of you. Don’t worry about friends ‘beating’ you or ‘getting somewhere’ ahead of you. Get out into the dirt real world and start failing. Why do I say that? Because the goal is to connect with your own self, with your own soul. Adversity. Everyone spends their life trying to avoid it. Me too. But the best things that ever happened to me came during the times when the shit hit the fan and I had nothing and nobody to help me. Who are you really? What do you really want? Get out there and fail and find out.”
-Steven Pressfield

“Clarity comes with action.” 
-Jeff Goins

“Even after all this time,
the Sun never says to the Earth,
you owe me,
look what happens with a love like that,
it lights the whole world.”
-Hafiz, as found in the memoir To Shake the Sleeping Self by Jedidiah Jenkins

I could go on and on. I keep a notebook with me where I can write down whatever words I hear or read that hit me and I flip through it often, like little reminders of what inspired me in the past and inspires me still. It’s a practice I highly recommend.

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