I love anything inspirational or motivational and my friends and family know it. When I taught K-12 students I used to have quotes all over my classroom. My favorite candy is Dove chocolates because of the sayings on the wrappers. Of course, I do like chocolate as well, but the quotes are what keep me coming back to Dove. I get lots of gifts like inspirational calendars or cards that I can reference or hang up in my work space.
In this post I want to share my top 5 favorite inspirational quotes and how I interpret them for my life.
“If you’re always trying to be normal, you’ll never know how amazing you can be.” – Maya Angelou
I love this quote because it reminds me that I don’t have to be like anyone else in this world. Also, normal is an abstract thing because what is normal anyway? It also encourages me to take risks. If I just stayed complacent with where I am, I may never discover that next new amazing thing that brings me happiness.
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.Michelangelo
Now this is a quote I often use in my courses when I teach goal-setting strategies. It kind of relates back to the first quote I mentioned here. As the first person in my family to graduate college, I saw an opportunity to keep going and now I have a terminal degree. I set my goal for the highest education possible and while it was challenging and time consuming, I did it. And if I hadn’t set the goal, I may never have known how much I was capable of.
“Leadership is about empathy. It is about having the ability to relate to and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives.” – Oprah Winfrey
As an aspiring leader who hopes to make a positive impact in this world, this quote really stands out to me. I’ve really tried to become a person who displays empathy and encourages others to build this quality. I think I’ve gotten better at it as I’ve gotten older and experienced lots of different life circumstances. I may not fully be able to understand someone’s unique situation, but I can provide grace and space as much as possible.
“When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.”–Helen Keller
I love this quote because it’s a reminder that opportunities are always in front of us and we have to let go of the past in order to embrace the possibilities of the future. It’s easy to dwell on negativity or rejections because it’s not great to feel those emotions. And it’s okay to feel them and recognize it, but I cannot let it bring down so much that I miss out on something even more amazing right behind that new door.
“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.” — Alice Morse Earle
The quote above keeps me grounded in the reality that every day and every moment we have with one another is precious and we shouldn’t take it for granted. As someone who relives past mistakes and creates future problems, it’s also a quote that speaks to fact that I should focus on the here and now. I can’t change the past and I don’t know what the future holds, but I know that today I can be kinder, work hard, and appreciate the many blessings that I do have.
Please leave a comment if you’d like me to do any more blog posts on quotes I enjoy!