Catalyst Quotes

Compiled by Alex Pena ~ ‘Catalyst’: “to spark, to ignite, energize, mobilize; something that accelerates a reaction (DDI)." Thought-provoking & motivational quotes and stories for you to read, reflect on and move forward in making creative and positive changes in your life.

“I Can Believe”

 

“I can believe things that are true and things that aren’t true and I can believe things where nobody knows if they’re true or not.

I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the Beatles and Marilyn Monroe and Elvis and Mister Ed.  Listen – I believe that people are perfectible, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like wrinkled lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women.

I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone’s ass.  I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating and that the decline in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from state to state. …

I believe that mankind’s destiny lies in the stars.  I believe that candy really did taste better when I was a kid, that it’s aerodynamically impossible for a bumble bee to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, that there’s a cat in a box somewhere who’s alive and dead at the same time (although if they don’t ever open the box to feed it it’ll eventually just be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the universe billions of years older than the universe itself.

I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything I do.  I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang with her girlfriends and doesn’t even know that I’m alive.  I believe in an empty and godless universe of causal chaos, background noise, and sheer blind luck.

I believe that anyone who says sex is overrated just hasn’t done it properly. I believe that anyone who claims to know what’s going on will lie about the little things too.

I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies.  I believe in a woman’s right to choose, a baby’s right to live, that while all human life is sacred there’s nothing wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no one but a moron would ever trust the legal system.

I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you’re alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.”   (Neil Gaiman, American Gods: The Author’s Preferred Text)

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“Some believe there is nothing one man or one woman can do against the enormous array of the world’s ills — against misery, against ignorance, or injustice and violence.  Yet many of the world’s great movements, of thought and action, have flowed from the work of a single man. A young monk began the Protestant reformation, a young general extended an empire from Macedonia to the borders of the earth, and a young woman reclaimed the territory of France. It was a young Italian explorer who discovered the World, and 32 year old Thomas Jefferson who proclaimed that all men are created equal.  ‘Give me a place to stand,’ said Archimedes, and I will move the world.’  These men moved the world, and so can we all.”   (Robert F. Kennedy)

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“There are no failures, only quitters.”   (Russell Simmons)

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“Think of Everything” / “Know What to Do, and THEN Do Your Best”

 

“Think of everything, all of it:  every mountain before you, every pound you carry, every dollar you wish to manifest… as if it were just pretend.

Suddenly – dominion over all things isn’t so intimidating, huh?  You can have (or have not) whatever you are capable of pretending you have (or have not).

Tallyho,    

        (signed)    The Universe”   (Mike Dooley, Notes from the Universe, 5.14.14) 

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“If you don’t design your own life plan, changes are you will fall into someone else’s plan.  And guess what they have planned for you – not much.”   (Jim Rohn)

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“Anything on earth you want to do is play.  Anything on earth you have to do is work.  Play will never kill you, work will.  I never worked a day in my life.”   (Dr. Leila Denmark, 100 years old)

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“It’s never too late to have a happy childhood.”   (Tom Robbins, Still Life with Woodpecker)

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“Direction determines destination.  So here is a question you must ask yourself, ‘Are all the disciplines that I’m currently engaged in taking me where I want to go?’  What an important question to ask yourself at the beginning of the month, the beginning of the week, the beginning of the day.  Because here is what you don’t ever want to do — kid yourself.  Kid your neighbor, kid me and kid the marketplace, but don’t kid yourself — fingers crossed — hoping you will arrive at a good destination when you’re not even headed that way.”   (Jim Rohn)

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“If you do the thing you think you cannot do, you’ll feel your resistance; your hope, your dignity, and your courage grow stronger.  You will someday face harder choices that very well might require more courage.  And when those moments come and you choose well, your courage will be recognized by those who matter most to you.  When your children see you choose, without hesitation, without remark, to value virtue more than security, to love more than you fear, they will learn what courage looks like and what love serves, and they will dread its absence. 

We’re all afraid of something.  The one fear we must all guard against is the fear of ourselves.  Don’t let the sensation of fear convince you that you’re too weak to have courage.  Fear is the opportunity for courage, not proof of cowardice.  No one is born a coward.  We were meant to love.  And we were meant to have the courage for it.”   (Senator John McCain, “In Search of Courage”, Fast Company Magazine, September 2004)

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“It is not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and THEN do your best.”   (W. Edwards Deming)

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“All the World’s a Stage” / “Once in a While You Get Shown the Light”

 

“All the world’s a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed.”   (Sean O’Casey) 

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“We make messes of our lives, but every now and then, we manage to do something that’s exactly right.  The challenge is figuring out which is which.”   (Jodi Picoult)

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“There will be a few times in your life when all your instincts will tell you to do something, something that defies logic, upsets your plans, and may seem crazy to others. When that happens, you do it.  Listen to your instincts and ignore everything else.  Ignore logic, ignore the odds, ignore the complications, and just go for it.”   (Judith McNaught)

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“Any life, no matter how long and complex it may be, is made up of a single moment — the moment in which a man finds out, once and for all, who he is.”   (Jorge Luis Borges)

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“Never follow somebody else’s path; it doesn’t work the same way twice for anyone…the path follows you and rolls up behind you as you walk, forcing the next person to find their own way.”   (J. Michael Straczynski)

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“My spiritual teachers, in order of the power of their teachings:

  1.  People who annoy the shit out of me
  2. All other spiritual teachers.”   (John Ptacek)

________ 

 

“Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right”   (Robert Hunter)

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“Make a Radical Change in Your Lifestyle” / “If You Never Did, You Should”

 

“Don’t dwell on negative thoughts, you loser.”   (God, @TheTweetOfGod)

________ 

 

“Life is nothing but a long-ass, complex series of moments, each of which is filled to the brim with countless opportunities.  They’re right there, in front of and around and inside each and every one of us, constantly.”   (Manimal)

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“I believe we were created to evolve.  Otherwise Jesus would have said, ‘Now, don’t do a thing until I get back!’”   (Swami Beyondananda)

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“Almost nothing important that ever happens to you happens because you engineer it.  Destiny has no beeper; destiny always leans trench-coated out of an alley with some sort of ‘pssstt’ that you usually can’t even hear because you’re in such a rush to do something important you’ve tried to engineer.”   (David Foster Wallace)

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“It is a bit embarrassing to have been concerned with the human problem all one’s life and find at the end that one has no more to offer by way of advice than ‘try to be a little kinder.’”   (Aldous Huxley)

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“Make a radical change in your lifestyle and begin to boldly do things which you may previously never have thought of doing, or been too hesitant to attempt.  So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservation, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secured future.  The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure.  The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.  If you want to get more out of life, you must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life that will at first appear to you as crazy.  But once you become accustomed to such a life you will see its full meaning and its incredible beauty.”   (Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild)

________ 

 

“If you never did, you should.  These things are fun, and fun is good.”   (Dr. Seuss)

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“One Defines Oneself by Reinvention” / “You, Too, Can Become Great”

 

“The thoughtless, the ignorant, and the indolent, seeing only the apparent effects of things and not the things themselves, talk of luck, of fortune, and chance.…  They do not see the trials and failures and struggles which these men have voluntarily encountered in order to gain their experience; have no knowledge of the sacrifices they have made, of the undaunted efforts they have put forth, of the faith they have exercised, that they might overcome the apparently insurmountable, and realize the Vision of their heart.  They do not know the darkness and the heartaches; they only see the light and joy, and call it ‘luck’; do not see the long and arduous journey, but only behold the pleasant ‘good fortune’; do not understand the process; but only perceive the result, and call it ‘chance.’

In all human affairs there are efforts and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”   (James Allen, As a Man Thinketh)

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“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.”   (Robert F. Kennedy)

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“Once you’ve done the mental work, there comes a point where you have to throw yourself into the action and put your heart on the line.  That means not only being brave, but being passionate towards yourself, your teammates and your opponents.”   (Phil Jackson)

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“It’s like there’s this person that you want to be for other people … To make them happy and make them proud of you.  And then there’s yourself.  Sometimes it’s really hard to tell where one ends and the other begins.”   (Dawson Creek)

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“I believe that one defines oneself by reinvention.  To not be like your parents.  To not be like your friends.  To be yourself.  To cut yourself out of stone.”   (Henry Rollins)

________ 

 

“Really great people make you feel that you, too, can become great.”   (Mark Twain)

________ 

 

“Waste no more time talking about great souls and how they should be.  Become one yourself!”   (Marcus Aurelius Antoninus)

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“What You Think You Become”

 

“The most common form of despair is not being who you are.”

(Søren Kierkegaard)

 ________

 

“How do we forgive ourselves for all of the things we did not become?”

(David ‘Doc’ Luben, 14 Lines from Love Letters or Suicide Notes)

 ________

 

“Don’t be too hard on yourself.  There are plenty of people willing to do that for you.  Love yourself and be proud of everything that you do.  Even mistakes mean you’re trying.”

(Susan Gale)

 ________

 

“What horrifies me most is the idea of being useless:  well-educated, brilliantly promising, and fading out into an indifferent middle age.”

(Sylvia Plath)

 ________

 

“And why do we fall?  So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”

(Thomas Wayne, ‘Batman Begins’)

 ________

 

“If you do what you need, you’re surviving.  If you do what you want, you’re living.”  

(Unknown Author)

 ________

 

“Who will tell whether one happy moment of love or the joy of breathing or walking on a bright morning and smelling the fresh air, is not worth all the suffering and effort which life implies.”

(Erich Fromm)

 ________

 

“Be so good they can’t ignore you.”

(Steve Martin)

 ________

 

“The mind is everything.  What you think you become.”

(Buddha)

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“Let’s Try to Live the Best We Can Now”

 

“May the Lord have mercy on my soul

Forgive me for my fetishes, my purchases, my clothes

Allow me to catch my rhythm so the nervousness just goes.”   (Brave Heart lyrics by Lupe Fiasco)

_________ 

 

“Pain doesn’t just show up in our lives for no reason.  It’s a sign that something in our life needs to change.”   (Mandy Hale)

_________ 

 

“There is only one cause of unhappiness: the false beliefs you have in your head, beliefs so widespread, so commonly held, that it never occurs to you to question them.”   (Anthony de Mello)

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“Nobody can decide for himself whether he is going to be a human being. The only question open to him is whether he will be an ignorant undeveloped one or one who has sought to reach the highest point he is capable of attaining.”   (Robert Maynard Hutchins)

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“If you are what you should be, then you will set the world on fire.”   (St. Catherine of Siena)

________ 

 

“We are what we pretend to be so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.”   (Kurt Vonnegut)

_________ 

 

“No matter the bad things that happened in past time, let’s try to live the best we can now.”   (Ziggy Marley)

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“You Can’t Please Everyone” / “And You Are Beautiful”

 

“Would there be any point in giving you the gift of imagination, the freedom to think as you choose, and dreams that set your soul on fire if even a single one of them couldn’t come true? 

I think not.  Think of the implications.

I love you too, too much.

Tallyho,     (signed)  The Universe”   (Mike Dooley, Notes from the Universe, 7.7.14)

________ 

 

“It’s not about you.

Right in the front row, not four feet from Christian McBride, was every performer’s bête noire. I don’t know why she came to the Blue Note, maybe it was to make her date happy. But she was yawning, checking her watch, looking around the room, fiddling with this and that, doing everything except being engaged in the music.

McBride seemed to be too professional and too experienced to get brought down by her disrespect and disengagement.  Here’s what he knew:  It wasn’t about him, it wasn’t about the music, it wasn’t a response to what he was creating.

Haters gonna hate.

Shun the non-believers.

Do your work, your best work, the work that matters to you.  For some people, you can say, ‘hey, it’s not for you.’  That’s okay.  If you try to delight the undelightable, you’ve made yourself miserable for no reason.

It’s sort of silly to make yourself miserable, but at least you ought to reserve it for times when you have a good reason.”   (Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog, June 10, 2014)

________ 

 

“I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.”   (Bill Cosby)

________ 

 

“You can’t please everyone.  When you’re too focused on living up to other people’s standards, you aren’t spending enough time raising your own.  Some people may whisper, complain and judge.  But for the most part, it’s all in your head.  People care less about your actions than you think.  Why?  They have their own problems!”   (Kriss Carr)

________ 

 

“Some lose all mind and become soul, insane.

some lose all soul and become mind, intellectual.

some lose both and become accepted.”   (Charles Bukowski)

________ 

 

“You are imperfect, permanently and inevitably flawed.  And you are beautiful.”   (Amy Bloom)

________ 

 

“It will take a nation of millions to hold me back.”   (Tim Howard, USA Soccer Team Player, quote in his yearbook)

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“Always Dream of How It’s Going to Be”

“Your choice.

Habits are a choice

Giving is a choice

Reactions are a choice

Ideas are a choice

Connections are a choice

Reputation is a choice

The work is a choice

Words are a choice

Leading is a choice

No one can be responsible for where or how we each begin.  No one has the freedom to do anything or everything, and all choices bring consequences.  What we choose to do next, though, how to spend our resources or attention or effort, this is what defines us.”  (Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog, 5.22.14)

________ 

 

“Contrary to popular belief, there most certainly IS an ‘I’ in TEAM.  It is the same “I” that appears 3 times in RESPONSIBILITY.”   (Amber Harding)

________ 

 

“Only those who can see the invisible can accomplish the impossible!”   (Patrick Snow)

________ 

 

“In case you never get a second chance: don’t be afraid!  And what if you do get a second chance?  You take it!”  (C. JoyBell C.)

________ 

 

“The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking places”   (Author Unknown)

________ 

 

“We were always dreaming of how it was going to be.”   (George Lucas)

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“Change the World, Change Your Words”

 

The world is perfect.  It’s a mess.  It has always been a mess.  We are not going to change it.  Our job is to straighten out our own lives.”   (Joseph Campbell)

________ 

 

“Every morning is a fresh beginning.  Every day is the world made new. Today is a new day. Today is my world made new.  I have lived all my life up to this moment, to come to this day. This moment — this day — is as good as any moment in all eternity.  I shall make of this day — each moment of this day — a heaven on earth.  This is my day of opportunity.”   (Dan Custer)

________ 

 

“You can change your world by changing your words.  Remember, death and life are in the power of the tongue.”   (Joel Osteen)

________ 

 

“I am constantly trying to communicate something incommunicable, to explain something inexplicable, to tell about something I only feel in my bones and which can only be experienced in those bones. Basically it is nothing other than this fear we have so often talked about, but fear spread to everything, fear of the greatest as of the smallest, fear, paralyzing fear of pronouncing a word, although this fear may not only be fear but also a longing for something greater than all that is fearful.”   (Franz Kafka, Letters to Milena:  Expanded and Revised, in a New Translation)

________ 

 

“It was impossible to get a conversation going, everybody was talking too much.”   (Yogi Berra)

________ 

 

“To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.”   (Anthony Robbins)

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“Words are a wonderful form of communication, but they will never replace kisses and punches.”   (Ashleigh Brilliant)

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