1.       “Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”

  • George Bernard Shaw

Apparently, it’s statesmanlike to stand firm and not change your mind. It’s also idiotic to ignore new evidence and refuse to admit you may have been wrong with your first conclusion.

I remember when John Kerry ran against George Bush for President, the Republicans discovered Kerry had changed his stance on the war in Iraq in light of new information that had been made available.

He was pilloried by the Republicans for being a flip-flopper rather than commended for being honest enough to accept he was wrong.

Your brain hates to be wrong, and it sets off a series of chemical responses that don’t feel good at all. It takes courage to ignore those feelings and admit your mistake.

We all get stuff wrong, just admit it when you do and move on with your newfound insight.

2.     “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one commits oneself, then Providence moves too.

All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor  all  manner  of  unforeseen  incidents  and   meetings   and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.

Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.” – William H Murray

This is often mistakenly attributed to Goethe when it really just came from a Goethe couplet and is presumed to have been said in full my Scottish Mountaineer, W H Murray, although that is not 100% certain.

Is there are greater quote on the importance of commitment? I doubt it.

  • ” Always do what you are afraid to do.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Presuming you don’t take this too literally and decide to strip naked, rub yourself down with fish guts and go teasing Grizzly Bears in mating season, this is a fantastic quote. The reality is public speaking scares me, but I still do it and boy am I glad every time I do, that I didn’t succumb to my fears.

Fear is ok, it’s just an emotion and you’re unlikely to die from being scared, but every time you do something that scares you, you widen your comfort zone and it’s less likely to scare you as much less time.

4.       “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit” – Aristotle

Malcolm Gladwell in his brilliant book “Outliers” talked about the growing realization in science that few people are born gifted. That it takes time (thought to be about 10,000 hours) and persistence to be world class at anything. It seems Aristotle beat Gladwell to the punch by about 2,000 years or so. You can be brilliant; you just have to stick with whatever it is you want to be brilliant at.

5.           “A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has” – Margaret Mead

Another oft cited quote and one that inspires people (or at least should do) to believe they really do have more power than they could ever imagine. Don’t think you are powerless because you’re not.

6.          “What you think of yourself is much more important than what others think of you” – Seneca

If only you knew how often I try to impress this belief on clients. So many people get wrapped up in trying to make other people like them, that they forget to like themselves. In other words, they give away their personal power and their happiness is then dependent on the good opinion of others.

It shouldn’t be.

7.          “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm” – Winston Churchill

There are so many quotes regarding the importance of failure in being successful, but in my humble opinion, this is the best. We ALL fail from time to time and the more you fail the more likely you are to succeed.

As long that is, you don’t drag your bottom lip around on the floor all the time bemoaning the fact that things aren’t going your way. Suck it up and move on.

8.       “You must be the change you wish to see in the world” – Gandhi

I almost left this out because it’s been done to death and it possibly the most well-known quote in the universe. But there’s a good reason for that, and that’s because it’s stunningly brilliant.

You cannot ever change anybody else; you can only change yourself and hope you inspire other people to do the same.

9.         “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up” – Thomas Edison

Three years ago, I had a client that I knew was really close to making a huge breakthrough when she lost her nerve. The fact that I’m telling you about it know demonstrates how frustrated as a Life Coach I was. There is a time for giving up and a time for pushing through, even though the latter can sometimes be scary.

  1. “Man can alter his life by altering his thinking‟ – William James

There is an amazing, if possibly apocryphal story about the father of modern psychology. Apparently, he agreed to be the keynote speaker at a major conference on psychology. This was a rare event and people travelled from all over the country looking forward to hearing the great man deliver his pearls of wisdom.

At the appointed time he walked up to the lectern, stood for a moment surveying the audience and then said, “The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes” He then apparently walked off stage, out of the building and back home, leaving everybody confused and pretty much pissed off.

He was right though and to if you are not inspired to know that you can improve the quality of your life by improving the quality of your thinking, then you‟re reading the wrong eBook.

  1. “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing” – George Bernard Shaw

I hit 50 in 2012 and it seems incomprehensible to me. I still get hyper excited about work, I still laugh my ass off at juvenile humor and as I type this I have loud dance music playing in the background.

Don’t stop being young because your birth certificate tells you too.

12.       “If I gave people what they wanted I’d have designed a faster horse” – Henry Ford

This may well never have been said by Ford, it may just be an apocryphal quote, but we don’t care, do we, because it makes a brilliant point?

Sometimes you have to step outside the box and take chances that don’t necessarily sit with conventional wisdom.

13.        “You will not be punished for your anger; you will be punished by your anger” – Buddha

Is there any need to explain this? Probably not because we all know how shit we feel when were angry. So let it go and don’t feel shit.

14.          “Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances” – Benjamin Franklin

You know that money and material things don’t make you happy for any length of time. That’s because they are extrinsic, and just because the Declaration of Independence got it wrong by suggesting we need to pursue happiness, thus suggesting it’s external, doesn’t mean you have to too.

Happiness is intrinsic, meaning it’s always within you. People have a predisposition to be more happy or unhappy through genetics, but that only makes up about 50% of the story, the rest is about your determination to be happy.

15.       “Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans”

  • John Lennon

Doesn’t that sum up many people you know, maybe even yourself? Are you so busy planning what’s next, that you forget that now is already here? Planning is crucial of course, but so is enjoying the only time you ever have; now.

16.       “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”

  • Eleanor Roosevelt

Every feeling you have is generated internally as a reaction (usually) to external events. It is your interpretation of events that gives them meaning, not the events themselves. How liberating is that? To know that people can only hurt you if you allow them to.

Of course, you have to believe it first.

17.         “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore.  Dream” – Mark Twain

Yes, yes, and thrice yes. So many people try to avoid disappointment by reigning in their hopes and dreams. It certainly can help avoid any short-term failure, but it pretty much guarantees a lifetime of “what ifs” and that’s not something I would wish on anybody.

18.       “A ship is safe in harbor, but that is not what a ship was built for”

  • William H Shedd

Another quote that may not be attributed to the right person, but who cares who said it, it’s still brilliant.

You can hide yourself away from the world, you can avoid doing anything risky or out there, but that’s not what you were put on this earth to do. You were put here to be the best person you can be and that means taking risks by hauling anchor and sailing out into the uncharted open sea from time to time.

  1. “Watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become actions. Watch your actions, they become habits. Watch your habits, they become your character. Watch your character, it becomes your destiny” – Author unknown although sometimes attributed to Frank Outlaw.

I don’t think this needs any explanation other than you become what you think about, so be careful what you think about.

20.       “Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers” – Voltaire

The quality of your life is dictated by the quality of questions you ask not just others, but yourself too. Questions like “Why do I suck?” will not improve the quality of your life. Ask great questions and prepare yourself for some great answers!

21.         “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it” – Aristotle

Most people I know like to think they are open-minded. Yet if you cannot entertain thoughts that contradict your belief system, how open-minded can you truly claim to be?

22.       “What the thinker thinks, the prover proves”

  • Robert Anton Wilson

Taken from the brilliant book, Prometheus Rising‟ Wilson sums up in a sentence something we do, which is to look for evidence to support the beliefs we already hold rather than questioning them.

23.       “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says „I’m possible‟!”

  • Audrey Hepburn

How awesomely cool is that? Next time you tell yourself something is impossible, try using this and see if you think differently because, physical limitations notwithstanding, pretty much everything is possible.

  • “There is no how it is, only how it is for you” – Tim Brownson

Holy crap, can you believe the audacity of the man to include one of his own quotes? Does his arrogance know no bounds!!!

Seriously though, I absolutely love it because it gets to the heart of self- development. Too many gurus want to tell you there way is the way. They’re wrong, don’t listen to them.

If getting up at 5.00am in the morning doesn’t suit you, don’t do it. If goal setting leaves you feeling deflated, don’t set any, and if reading eBooks with inspiring quotes in it doesn’t inspire you, stop reading right now!

Find out what works best for you and then do it! Better still hire a Life Coach and get help doing it!

25.       “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily” – Zig Ziglar

Zig nails it with this one. Self-development is like going to the gym. Nobody gets fit by going to the gym once; it’s a daily or weekly ritual. Self-development is the same, you must work on it, if that is, you really want to master it.

To your success

Bobby Wan

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