Monday, December 31, 2012

#868 How does one become a linchpin?

The job is what you do when you are told what to do. The job is showing up at the factory, following instructions, meeting spec, and being managed.

Someone can always do your job a little better or faster or cheaper than you can.
The job might be difficult, it might require skill, but it's a job.

Your art is what you do when no one can tell you exactly how to do it. Your art is the act of taking personal responsibility, challenging the status quo, and changing people.

I call the process of doing your art 'the work.' It's possible to have a job and do the work, too. In fact, that's how you become a linchpin.

The job is not the work.  ~ Seth Godin

- How does Godin distinguish between a job and work?
- To what extent do you utilize 'your art' in the endeavors of your day?
- Where can you cultivate your personal attributes as a linchpin?

Saturday, December 29, 2012

#867 Joy from cliffs of despair

A thing of beauty is a joy forever.  ~ John Keats

Joy and sorrow are inseparable. . . together they come and when one sits alone with you . . remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.  ~ Kahlil Gibran

Words are like nets - we hope they'll cover what we mean, but we know they can't possibly hold that much joy, or grief, or wonder.  ~ Jodi Picoult

Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.  ~ Mother Teresa

For happiness one needs security, but joy can spring like a flower even from the cliffs of despair.  ~Anne Morrow Lindbergh

- What beauty have you experienced recently which brought joy?
- How can you best balance the joys and sorrows of life?
- How can you cultivate some happiness even amidst despair?

Friday, December 28, 2012

#866 To accomplish great things

Make sure you visualize what you really want, not what someone else wants for you.  ~Jerry Gillies 

Visualization is daydreaming with a purpose.  ~Bo Bennett

Visualize this thing that you want, see it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blue print, and begin to build.   ~ Robert Collier

To accomplish great things we must first dream, then visualize, then plan... believe... act!..   ~ Alfred A. Montapert

See yourself confronting your fears in your mind’s eye and handling those fears like a champ.   ~Les Brown

Tags: quotes about visualize, visualizing, planning, goals, life 

- What do you really want?
- When have you used dreaming/visualization/planning/believing/acting to help accomplish goals?
- To what extent could you use visualization to help overcome one of your fears?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

#865 Stretched by a new idea

One's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.  ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

An idea is salvation by imagination.  ~Frank Lloyd Wright

Our best ideas come from clerks and stockboys.  ~Sam Walton

Ideas won't keep. Something must be done about them.  ~Alfred North Whitehead

Getting an idea should be like sitting down on a pin; it should make you jump up and do something.   ~ E. L. Simpson 

Tags: quotes about ideas, life

- What several ideas stretched your perspectives/understanding of life?
- In what ways have several ideas been liberating for you?
- What idea(s) could motivate you to act?

Saturday, December 22, 2012

#864 Growing light

I will love the light for it shows me the way. Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.  ~ Og Mandino

We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light.  ~ Mary Dunbar

There are two ways of spreading light; to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.   ~ Edith Wharton

We cannot hold a torch to light another's path without brightening our own.  ~Ben Sweetland

People are like stained glass windows: they sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light within.  ~Elizabeth Kubler-Ross 

- How much light do you emanate?
- What shadows lurk in your life?
- How can you cultivate the light within?

Friday, December 21, 2012

#863 A little farther up the shore

Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.  ~ Michael Caine

The pursuit, even of the best things, ought to be calm and tranquil.  ~ Cicero

When I can look life in the eyes, grown calm and very coldly wise, life will have given me the truth, and taken in exchange - my youth.  ~ Sara Teasdale

I never felt settled or calm. You can't really commit to life when you feel that.  ~ Angelina Jolie

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.  ~ Willa Cather

The secret of success is to be in harmony with existence, to be always calm to let each wave of life wash us a little farther up the shore.  ~ Cyril Connolly

Tags: quotes about calm, life

- How vigorously are you paddling through life?
- What causes you some anxiety?
- To what extent do you try to seek harmony/balance through the turbulence?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

#862 A new world every heart beat

In the practical use of our intellect, forgetting is as important as remembering.  ~ William James

To be able to forget means sanity.  ~ Jack London

To forgive is wisdom, to forget is genius. And easier. Because it's true. It's a new world every heart beat.  ~ Joyce Cary

Blessed are those who give without remembering and take without forgetting.  ~ Elizabeth Bibesco

- What incidents in your life are worth forgetting?
- How can forgetting past wrongs be liberating?
- In what situation(s) might you be able to give without remembering your good deeds?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

#861 Be good for something

We value virtue but do not discuss it. The honest bookkeeper, the faithful wife, the earnest scholar get little of our attention compared to the embezzler, the tramp, the cheat.  ~ John Steinbeck

On the whole human beings want to be good, but not too good, and quite all the time.  ~ George Orwell

Blushing is the color of virtue.  ~ Diogenes

The excess of virtue is a vice.  ~ Greek proverb

Virtue is its own revenge.  ~ E. Y. Harburn

Do not be too moral.  You may cheat yourself out of much of life so.  Aim above morality.  Be not simply good; be good for something.  ~ Henry David Thoreau

- How virtuous are you?
- What are your marginal vices?
- In what ways can you contribute to life in positive ways?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

#860 To be alive

To be truly cultivated is to think reasonably, to live grandly, to love greatly, to shun pettiness, to condemn prejudice and cruelty. In short, to be cultivated is to be alive in the very largest sense. ~ Dorothy J. Farnan

When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love. ~ Marcus Aurelius

Every day is a good day to be alive, whether the sun's shining or not. ~ Marty Robbins

- How would you describe a cultivated person?
- What is the most important quality for a person to possess?
- How well do you measure up?

Monday, December 17, 2012

#859 Take in Small Doses

Happiness is a small and unworthy goal for something as big and fancy as a whole lifetime, and should be taken in small doses.  ~ Russell Baker

For each ecstatic instant 

We must an anguish pay

In keen and quivering ratio

To the ecstasy.  ~ Emily Dickinson

- How much happiness have you enjoyed so far in your life?
- Why is it healthy not to expect too much of it?
- How should one journey through the sunshine and the rain?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

#858 A richer culture

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.   ~ Marcus Garvey

You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.  ~ Ray Bradbury

Without culture, and the relative freedom it implies, society, even when perfect, is but a jungle. This is why any authentic creation is a gift to the future.  ~ Albert Camus

No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive.  ~ Mahatma Gandhi

A good newspaper, I suppose, is a nation talking to itself.  ~ Arthur Miller

Real popular culture is folk art - coalminers' songs and so forth.  ~ Noam Chomsky

If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.   ~Margaret Mead

Tags: quotes about culture  

- How much are you aware of your history, origins, and culture?
- What cultural initiatives could you support in your community?
- What rich human gifts have you seen by people around you, by you?

Friday, December 14, 2012

#857 When you really mean it

Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.  ~ Dr. Seuss

What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. These are but trifles, to be sure; but, scattered along life's pathway, the good they do is inconceivable.  ~Joseph Addison

Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.  ~ Mother Teresa

Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.  ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

If you smile when you are alone, then you really mean it.  ~ Andy Rooney

Tags: quotes about smiles, life

- Whose sincere smiles have enriched you?
- How much are smiles a part of your daily journey?
- To what extent can your smiles and warmth enrich yourself as well as others?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

#856 A measure of darkness

Balance is the perfect state of still water. Let that be our model. It remains quiet within and is not disturbed on the surface.  ~ Confucius

Don't hold on too long, but don't let go too soon. Find a balance.  ~ Morrie Swartz

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.   ~ Albert Einstein

Balance is the enemy of art.   ~ Richard Eyre

As we look deeply within, we understand our perfect balance. There is no fear of the cycle of birth, life and death. For when you stand in the present moment, you are timeless.   ~ Rodney Yee

There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year's course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word 'happy' would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.  ~ Carl Jung 

Tags: quotes about balance, life 

- How balanced is your life?
- To what extent have you harmonized the cycles of life?
- In what areas of your life could you strive for more composure and control?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

#855 Have nothing to do with it

The fear of death is more to be dreaded than death itself. ~ Publilius Syrus

Man imagines that it is death he fears, but what he fears is the unknown. ~ Saint Exupéry

There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval. ~ George Santayana

Be of good cheer about death and know this as a truth - that no evil can happen to a good man, either in life or after death. ~ Socrates

Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light. ~ Dylan Thomas

Against you I fling myself, unvanquished and unyielding, O Death!  ~ Virginia Woolf

Dying is a very dull, dreary affair. And my advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it. ~ W. Somerset Maugham

- How much do you fear death and the unknown?

- To what extent is your life lived an antidote to the fears?
- How should death be considered?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

#854 How did it get late so soon?

Go for it now.  The future is promised to no one.  ~ Wayne Dyer

Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans.  ~ Allen Saunders

The right person is the one that seizes the moment.  ~ Goethe

Only that day dawns to which we are awake.  ~ Henry David Thoreau

How did it get late so soon?
It's night before it's afternoon.
December is here before it's June.
My goodness how the time has flown.
How did it get so late so soon?  ~ Dr. Seuss 

-How much do you dwell on future plans?
-What opportunities have passed you by?
-How can you enrich your future days?

Monday, December 10, 2012

#853 Make Facts Live

Get the facts, or the facts will get you. And when you get em, get em right, or they will get you wrong.  ~ Thomas Fuller

Every man has a right to be wrong in his opinions. But no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.  ~ Bernard Baruch

If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts.  ~ Albert Einstein

The fewer the facts, the stronger the opinion.  ~ Arnold H. Glasow

The main part of intellectual education is not the acquisition of facts but learning how to make facts live.  ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

- In what situations are facts really important?
- When have you assembled the facts well and presented them convincingly?
- Think of a scenario where you could make facts live with vibrancy and vitality?

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Tags: quotes about facts, opinion, truth

Saturday, December 8, 2012

#852 The only really effective weapon

Humanity takes itself too seriously.  It is the world's original sin.  If the cavemen had known how to laugh, history would have been different.  ~ Oscar Wilde

I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it's the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It's probably the most important thing in a person.  ~ Audrey Hepburn

If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane.  ~ Robert Frost

There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor.  ~ Charles Dickens

Life is worth living as long as there is a laugh in it.  ~ L. M. Montgomery

The human race has only one really effective weapon and that is laughter.  ~ Mark Twain

- How important is laughter for you?
- To what extent does the world need more laughter?
- How can you cultivate more of it? 

Tags: quotes about laughter, humor, life

Friday, December 7, 2012

#851 One Rule of Practice

I expect to pass through life but once. If, therefore, there can be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again. ~ William Penn

Always be a little kinder than necessary. ~ James M. Barrie

Never look down on anyone unless you are helping him up.  ~ Jess Jackson

There is one word which may serve as a rule of practice for all one's life - reciprocity. ~ Confucius

Tags: quotes about kindness, love, life 

- What opportunities to be kind have you missed?
- When have you felt a little better than someone else?
- How can reciprocity (treat others as you would like to be treated) serve as inspiration for you?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

#850 The Greatest of the Arts

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.  ~ Aristotle

A closed mind is a dying mind.  ~ Edna Ferber

The purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one. ~ Malcolm Forbes

I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other great artists. Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit. ~ John Steinbeck 

- What several creative and skilful teachers helped to enlighten you?
- How accepting and open is your mind?
- How can such a mind enrich one's life?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

#849 They were so delicious

Never ruin an apology with an excuse.  ~ Benjamin Franklin

A stiff apology is a second insult... The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been wronged; he wants to be healed because he has been hurt.  ~ Guilbert K. Chesterton

An apology is the superglue of life. It can repair just about anything.  ~Lynn Johnston

The most important trip you could take in life is meeting people halfway.  ~ Henry Boye

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold.  ~ William Carlos Williams 

- What is a 'cheap' apology?
- How do you address an apology which addresses the deep hurt which may have occurred?
- Where, in your relationships, could an apology provide renewal?

Tags: quotes about apology, apologizing, life

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

#848 The only sure road out of darkness

The true human is infinitely deeper than the merely human.  ~Blaise Pascal

If I seem to boast more than is becoming, my excuse is that I brag for humanity rather than for myself. ~ Henry David Thoreau 

Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity. ~ Horace Mann

My first world is humanity. My second world is humanism. And, I live in the third world being merely a human.  ~ Santosh Kalwar

Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another. ~ Carl Sagan

The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.  ~ George Orwell

The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that. And yes, there are certainly times when we aren't able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It's called being human.  ~ Elizabeth Edwards

The main thing in life is not to be afraid to be human.  ~ Aaron Carter

Tags: quotes about being human, humanity, life

- How would you define a 'true human'?
- What victories for humanity have, and will you pursue?
- Why is it acceptable to admit your vulnerabilities and challenges?

Monday, December 3, 2012

#847 The only sure road out of darkness

Healing comes only from that which leads the patient beyond himself and beyond his entanglements with ego. ~ Carl Jung

An egotist is a person more interested in himself than in me!  ~ Ambrose Bierce

Big egos are big shields for lots of empty space.  ~ Diana Black

Egotism is the source and summary of all faults and miseries.  ~ Thomas Carlyle

Egotism is usually subversive of sagacity. (insight)  ~ Marianne Moore

Loving is the only sure road out of darkness, the only serum known that cures self-centeredness.  ~ Roger McKuen 

Make your ego porous. Will is of little importance, complaining is nothing, fame is nothing. Openness, patience, receptivity, solitude is everything.  Rainer Maria Rilke

Tags: quotes about ego, life 

-How entangled are you with your ego?
-From your observations about others, to what extent do you see ego as a hindrance?
-How can you resolve to show more openness in your relationships?

Saturday, December 1, 2012

#846 To be believed

One person with a belief is equal to a force of 99 who have only interests.  ~John Stuart Mill

Man is what he believes.  ~ Anton Chekhov

If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything.  ~ Malcolm X

Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm.  ~ Abraham Lincoln

Some things have to be believed to be seen.  ~ Madeleine L'Engle

Faith is about doing. You are how you act, not just how you believe.  ~ Mitch Albom

Tags: quotes on belief

- What are several of your core beliefs?
- To what extent do these beliefs motivate your actions and outlook on life?
- To what extent do your beliefs need some refinement and focus?