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.

“Our Goal; Keep Dumb and Stupid Far Apart”

 

“Don’t allow your wounds to transform you into someone you’re not.”   (Paulo Coelho)

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“Look closely at the present you are constructing.  It should look like the future you are dreaming.”   (Alice Walker)

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“It is not for you to judge the journey of another’s soul.  It is for you to decide who you are, not who another has been, or has failed to be.”   (Neale Donald Walsch)

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“Here’s the truth: you are going to waste a lot of hours focusing on who you are not, or who you want to secretly be.  But you won’t ever wake up and actually be that person.  You’ve got to embrace what you bring to the table.  If you don’t like what that is, have the courage to change it.”   (Hannah Brencher, 25 Things Every Woman Needs to Know)

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“Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records.”   (William Arthur Ward)

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“It seems that the necessary thing to do is not to fear mistakes, to plunge in, to do the best that one can, hoping to learn enough from blunders to correct them eventually.”   (Abraham Maslow)

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“Say no to the drug of gradualness.  It was Martin Luther King, Jr., who spoke out strongly against making slow changes.  Either we risk or we don’t, he said. Either we change or we don’t.  There’s no acceptable middle ground because it lulls us into complacency.  Lasting changes rarely occur when we ease our way into the future.  They come when we leap.  The leap themselves can be small or large.  Once we take action, we see things differently and for many of us there’s no going back.”   (Robert Cooper, The Other 90%:  How to Unlock Your Vast Untapped Potential for Leadership and Life)

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“It has taken far too long to figure out that in life dumb just will happen, but stupid always is a choice, a decision, and stupid has consequences.  Our goal in life is to keep dumb and stupid far apart.  Remember, stupid always is a choice, and it usually has stupid consequences.  Think!”   (Fr. Brian Cavanaugh)

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“Listen With Your Eyes”

 

“A little girl came home from school with a drawing she’d made in class.  She danced into the kitchen where her mother was preparing dinner.

‘Mom, guess what?’ she squealed waving the drawing.  Her mother never looked up.

‘What?’ she said, tending to the pots.

‘Guess what?’ the child repeated, waving the drawings.

‘What?’ the mother said, tending to the plates.

‘Mom, you’re not listening.’

‘Sweetie, yes I am.’

‘Mom’ the child said ‘you’re not listening with your EYES.’”   (Mitch Albom, Have a Little Faith:  A True Story)

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“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”   (Leo Buscaglia)

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“The key is being truly interested in listening.”   (Shirley Tilghman, President, Princeton University)

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“Listening is a magnetic and strange thing, a creative force.  The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward.  When we are listened to, it creates us, makes us unfold and expand.”   (Karl Menninger)

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“Listening is an art.  When people are speaking it requires that they have our undivided attention.  We focus on them; we listen very carefully.  We listen to the spoken words and the unspoken messages.  This means looking directly at the person, eyes connected … just focusing for that moment on that person.  It’s called respect, it’s called appreciation, it’s called anticipation ….”   (Frances Hesselbein, The Art of Listening)

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“Listening, not imitation, may be the sincerest form of flattery.”   (Dr. Joyce Brothers)

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“I remind myself every morning:  Nothing I say this day will teach me anything.  So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening.”   (Larry King)

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”If the person you are talking to doesn’t appear to be listening, be patient.  It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.”   (A. A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh)

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“Let Us Prepare / Put On Your Socks / Let’s Do the Undoable”

 

“John Wooden was arguably ‘the’ greatest coach of all time in any sport. The guy won 10 championships in 12 years at UCLA and had an 88-game undefeated streak that ran nearly 3 years.

Wooden was all about consistency on the fundamentals and had an awesome way of kicking off each season.  Imagine the greatest young basketball players in the US showing up for the first day of practice.  Guess what Coach would start with…

He’d show them how to put on their socks.

Why?  Because if they couldn’t put their socks on just right, they might get a blister.  Get a blister and they might miss practice time.  Miss practice time and their game-time performance would suffer.

The equation was simple:  Blister = No championship. 

Amazing.

Kinda begs the question:  Any ‘blisters’ slowing you down?

If so, you might wanna look at how you’re putting on your socks.

Fact is, when we don’t pay attention to the little things, we’re gonna get blisters.   (Brian Johnson, Chief Philosopher, ‘A Philosopher’s Notes’)

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“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”   (Benjamin Franklin)

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“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”   (Seneca)

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“I will prepare and some day my chance will come.”   (Abraham Lincoln)

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“Never try to be better than someone else.  Learn from others, and try to be the best you can be.  Success is the by-product of that preparation.”   (John Wooden)

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“Let’s think the unthinkable, let’s do the undoable.  Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not ‘eff’ it after all.”   (Douglas Adams, Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency)

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“Scare the World – Be Who You Are”

 

“One day I just woke up and realized that I can’t touch yesterday.  So why the heck was I letting it touch me?”   (Steve Maraboli)

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“I am made and remade continually.  Different people draw different words from me.”   (Virginia Woolf, The Waves)

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“And I realize that no matter where I am, whether in a little room full of thought, or in this endless universe of stars and mountains, it’s all in my mind.”   (Jack Kerouac, Lonesome Traveler)

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“I know now, after fifty years, that the finding/losing, forgetting/remembering, leaving/returning, never stops.  The whole of life is about another chance, and while we are alive, till the very end, there is always another chance.”   (Jeanette Winterson, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?)

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“Stop looking at the past and all the things you can’t change.  They’re done and over with. Now is the time for you to look to the future, grasp it by the hand, and decide where you want to go.”   (Chasing Nikki, Lacey Weatherford)

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“Maybe happiness is this:  not feeling like you should be elsewhere, doing something else, being someone else.”   (Eric Weiner, In the Geography of Bliss)

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“Scare the world:  Be exactly who you say you are and tell the truth.”   (The Shock of Honesty)

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“It Is Up to Me”

“We must look at the lens through which we see the world, as well as the world we see, and that the lens itself shapes how we interpret the world.”   (Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People:  Powerful Lessons in Personal Change)

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“You can become blind by seeing each day as a similar one.  Each day is a different one, each day brings a miracle of its own.  It’s just a matter of paying attention to this miracle.”  (Stephen Covey)

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“Just look to those who already possess as you wish to possess or who have already achieved as you wish to achieve and ask yourself whether or not they have some special gift that you don’t have?  If they have more angels than you?  If they’re any more loved than you are now loved? If they have suffered more, worked harder, or waited longer than you?  If I would permit them to be ‘luckier’ or have it easier than you?  And you will see, after careful consideration, that their success depended upon none of these things.  It arrived simply because they expected it to arrive, and then lived their lives accordingly.

Boom, there it is.      (signed)   The Universe”   (Mike Dooley, Notes from the Universe, August 14, 2014)

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“In order to win, you must expect to win.”   (Richard Bach)

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“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”   (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

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The ten most powerful 2-letter words in the English language:   ‘If it is to be it is up to me.’”   (William H. Johnsen)

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It Takes Courage to Grow Up

 

“The greatest discovery of our generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.  As you think, so shall you be.”   (William James)

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“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”   (Albert Einstein)

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“The real tragedy of life is not that each of us doesn’t have enough strengths, it’s that we fail to use the ones we have.”   (Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton, Now Discover Your Strengths)

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“What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves?  This is the most important of all voyages of discovery, and without it, all the rest are not only useless, but disastrous.”   (Thomas Merton)

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“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”   (Eleanor Roosevelt)

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“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”   (e. e. cummings)

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“We all have possibilities we don’t know about.

We can do things we don’t even dream we can do.”   (Dale Carnegie)

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“You Are Now at a Crossroad” / “There is No Such Thing as ‘Should’”

 

“Life is the sum of all of your choices.”   (Albert Camus)

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“You are now at a crossroad.  This is your opportunity to make the most important decision you will ever make.  Forget your past.  Who are you now? Who have you decided you really are now?  Don’t think about who you have been.  Who are you now?  Who have you decided to become?  Make this decision consciously.  Make it carefully.  Make it powerfully.”   (Anthony Robbins)

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“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notion unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.”   (Marcus Aurelius Antoninus)

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“The three grand essentials of happiness are:  something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for.”   (Alexander Chalmers)

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“Risk more than others think is safe.  Care more than others think is wise.  Dream more than others think is practical.  Expect more than others thinks is possible.”   (Cadet Maxim)

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“There is no such thing as ‘should’.  You shouldn’t do anything you don’t want to do. You shouldn’t work a job you don’t like.  You shouldn’t hang out with people that don’t make you happy.  You shouldn’t eat food that doesn’t make you feel good.  You shouldn’t do anything that doesn’t make you feel the way you want to feel.

Be honest with yourself.  Change ‘should’ to ‘want” in your sentences and if whatever it is still seems like a good idea go for it, if not, don’t.

Except maybe go to the dentist, you should probably do that.”   (Uplifted Vibrations)

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“You are free to believe what you choose and what you do attest to what you believe.”   (A Course in Miracles)

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“You just have to decide if you’re a Tigger or an Eeyore.”  (Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture)

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“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)

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“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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