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.

Archive for the month “April, 2014”

“We’re All Going to Die – Be Kind – Be Thankful for the Heavy Days”


“If you follow the ancient maps written on the stars, no person will ever understand you.  So if you could read these maps, would you follow them?  And forever be misunderstood?  Or would you close your eyes tightly and pretend to be like everyone else?”   (C. JoyBell C.)



”People aren’t born good or bad.  Maybe they’re born with tendencies either way, but it’s the way you live your life that matters.”   (Cassandra Clare, City of Glass)



“We’re all going to die, all of us, what a circus!  That alone should make us love each other but it doesn’t.  We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities; we are eaten up by nothing.”  (Charles Bukowski)



“Consider it:  every person you have ever met, every person you will pass in the street today, is going to die.  Living long enough, each will suffer the loss of his friends and family.  All are going to lose everything they love in this world.  Why would one want to be anything but kind to them in the meantime?”   (Sam Harris)



“So often, we define ourselves by the pain in our lives.  It is our way of attracting the attention of the universe.  ‘Look at me.  Look at what the world has done.’  But seldom do we take the time to realize that we are in control of that pain, as much as we are in control of surviving it.  They are one and the same.”   (Ronald Andrés Moore)



“I am thankful

for the heavy days.

All that weight

is the only thing that taught

me what I know about strength.”   (The Blessings Hiding Behind Curses)



“I wish to live a life that causes my soul to dance inside my body.”   (Dele Olanubi)

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“Make Big Plans – Choose Your Response – Be Response Able”


“Every project we undertake starts with the same question:

‘How can we do what has never been done before?’”   (Stuart Hornery, Lend Lease)



“Make big plans … that’s the best way to make big things happen.

Write down your plans.  Share them with trusted colleagues.  Seek out team members and accomplices.

Shun the non-believers.  They won’t be easily convinced, but they can be ignored.

Is there any doubt that making big plans increases the chances that something great will happen?

Is there any doubt that we need your contribution?

Why then, are you hesitating to make big plans?”   (Seth Godin)



“The worst moments are your best opportunity.  That’s how we judge you and how we remember you.  You are presumed to be showing us your real self when you are on deadline, have a headache, are facing a customer service meltdown, haven’t had a good night’s sleep, are facing an ethical dilemma, are momentarily in power, are caught doing something when you thought no one else was looking, are irritable, have the opportunity to extract revenge, are losing a competition or are truly overwhelmed.

What a great opportunity to tell the story you’d like us to hear about you.”   (Seth Godin)



To be proactive means you take the initiative to do whatever’s necessary to make good things happen.  The best way to predict your future is to create it.

The opposite of this is to be reactive; which basically means that your life is a function of your feelings, your moods, your impulses, or how other people treat you.  You feel you have ample justification to say that you are what other people have made you.  You are what your past has made you.  You are what is happening to you.  And so you don’t take responsibility.

The underlying principle of being proactive is to take responsibility.  You and I have the capacity to choose our response.

I am responsible. 

I am response able.”   (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey)



“Strive for excellence, not perfection, because we don’t live in a perfect world.”   (Joyce Meyer)



“When [what you are deeply passionate about, what you can be best in the world at and what drives your economic engine] come together, not only does your work move toward greatness, but so does your life.  For, in the end, it is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life.  And it is very difficult to have a meaningful life without meaningful work. Perhaps, then, you might gain that rare tranquility that comes from knowing that you’ve had a hand in creating something of intrinsic excellence that makes a contribution.  Indeed, you might even gain that deepest of all satisfactions:  knowing that your short time here on this earth has been well spent, and that it mattered.”   (Jim Collins, Good to Great:  Why Some Companies Make the Leap … and Others Don’t)



“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom.  Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.”   (Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching)

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“What Kind of Person Do You Want to Be in Life”


“You are what you want to become.  Why search anymore?

You are a wonderful manifestation.

The whole universe has come together to make your existence possible.

There is nothing that is not you.”   (Thich Nhat Hanh)



“You don’t need anyone’s affection or approval in order to be good enough. When someone rejects or abandons or judges you, it isn’t actually about you.  It’s about them and their own insecurities, limitations, and needs, and you don’t have to internalize that.  Your worth isn’t contingent upon other people’s acceptance of you — it’s something inherent.

You exist, and therefore, you matter. You’re allowed to voice your thoughts and feelings. You’re allowed to assert your needs and take up space.  You’re allowed to hold onto the truth that who you are is exactly enough.  And you’re allowed to remove anyone from your life who makes you feel otherwise.”   (Daniell Koepke)



“Ask yourself what kind of person you want to be in the life that you will live today.  Throughout the day, remind yourself that your life is happening right now.”   (H.H. the Karmapa)

“And maybe what growing up really means is knowing that you don’t have to be just a character, going whichever way the story says.  It’s knowing you could be the author instead.”   (Ava Dellaira)



“10 to Zen

Let go of comparing.

Let go of competing.

Let go of judgments.

Let go of anger.

Let go of regrets.

Let go of worrying.

Let go of blame.

Let go of guilt

Let go of fear.

Have a proper belly laugh at least once a day (especially if it’s about your inability to let go of any or all of the above.)”  (BuddhaHeart)



“Remind myself, in the darkest moments, that every failure is only a step toward success, every detection of what is false directs you toward what is true, every trial exhausts some tempting form of error, and every adversity will only hide, for a time, your path to peace and fulfillment.”   (Og Mandino)

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“So How Good Do You Want to Be?”


“Do you deserve it?

Do you deserve the luck you’ve been handed?  

The place you were born, the education you were given, the job you’ve got?  

Do you deserve your tribe, your customer base, your brand?

Not at all.  ‘Deserve’ is such a loaded word.  

The question shouldn’t be, ‘do you deserve it.’  

I think it should be, ‘what are you going to do with it now that you’ve got it?’”   (Seth Godin)



“Many people are eager to have soothsayers predict their future.  

Fewer are willing to take responsibility for writing their own fortune.  

Your future is a blank sheet of paper waiting for you to create what is to come.”   (Jim Clemmer)



“So how good do you want to be?  All of us want to be good at our jobs, but how good do we really want to be?  Quite good.  Good.  Very good.  The best in the field.  Or the best in the world?  Talent helps, but it won’t take you as far as ambition.  … Everybody wants to be good, but not many are prepared to make the sacrifices it takes to be great.  Most people are looking for a solution, a way to become good.  There is no instant solution, the only way to learn is through experience and mistakes.  You will become whoever you want to be.

You can achieve the unachievable.  Firstly you need to aim beyond what you are capable of.

You must develop a complete disregard for where you abilities end.  Try to do the things that you’re incapable of.  If you think you’re unable to work for the best company in its sphere, make that your aim.  If you think you’re incapable of running a company, make that your aim. If you think you’re unable to be on the cover of Time magazine, make it your business to be there.  Make your vision of where you want to be a reality.  Nothing is impossible.”   (Paul Arden, It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want to Be)



“Vision without execution is hallucination.”   (Thomas Edison)



“No one’s life should be rooted in fear.  We are born for wonder, for joy, for hope, for love, to marvel at the mystery of existence, to be ravished by the beauty of the world, to seek truth and meaning, to acquire wisdom, and by our treatment of others to brighten the corner where we are.”   (Dean Koontz, Life Expectancy)

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“Being Brave Doesn’t Mean You Aren’t Scared”


“It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird.  It would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg.  We are like eggs at present.  And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg.  We must be hatched or go bad.”   (C. S. Lewis)



“The decision to be positive is not one that disregards or belittles the sadness that exists. It is rather a conscious choice to focus on the good and to cultivate happiness—genuine happiness. Happiness is not a limited resource.  And when we devote our energy and time to trivial matters, and choose to stress over things that ultimately are insignificant. From that point, we perpetuate our own sadness, and we lose sight of the things that really make us happy and rationalize our way out of doing amazing things.”   (Christopher Aiff)



“There are moments in your life that make you, that set the course of who you’re gonna be.  Sometimes they’re little, subtle moments.  Sometimes, they’re not.  …  Bottom line is, even if you see ‘em coming, you’re not ready for the big moments.  No one asks for their life to change, not really.  But it does.  So what are we, helpless?  Puppets?  No.  The big moments are gonna come.  You can’t help that.  It’s what you do afterwards that counts.  That’s when you find out who you are.”   (Buffy The Vampire Slayer)



“Sometimes I think that wisdom slips from my mind like drool from the lips of an idiot…

Where’s all this stuff coming from?  Is it any good?  Any good in, you know, the wisdom sense? Who am I to spout this stuff anyway?

Well, here’s the thing.  You too can find yourself shedding wisdom like cat hair if you only allow yourself the liberty of introspection.

Think about what you alone know that no one else does.  That one neat wonderful profound insight.  It is fully yours.  No one else on this planet of about six billion people understands it like you do.

Now, see if you can share it with someone.  Bestow it, a gift of yourself.

Wisdom is like gossip.  Except it’s the good kind.”   (Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration)



“Being brave doesn’t mean you aren’t scared.  Being brave means you are scared, really scared, badly scared, and you do the right thing anyway.”   (Neil Gaiman, Coraline)

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“The Question of What We Are”


“The question of what we are can only be answered by ourselves.  We each decide what we are by the life choices we make.  How we were made, who are parents are, where we are from, the color of our skin, who we choose to love, all those things do not define us. Our actions define us, and will keep defining us until even after death.”   (P. C. Cast, Destined)



“If everybody spent enough time worrying about their own goddamn selves, no one would have to worry about anyone else.”   (Don De Grazia, American Skin)



“You are a function of what the whole universe is doing in the same way that a wave is a function of what the whole ocean is doing.”   (Alan Wilson Watts)



“Jesus Christ knew he was God.  So wake up and find out eventually who you really are. In our culture, of course, they’ll say you’re crazy and you’re blasphemous, and they’ll either put you in jail or in a nut house (which is pretty much the same thing).  However if you wake up in India and tell your friends and relations, ‘My goodness, I’ve just discovered that I’m God,’ they’ll laugh and say, ‘Oh, congratulations, at last you found out.’”   (Alan Wilson Watts, The Essential Alan Watts)



“I’ve tried

 to become someone else for a while,

only to discover that he, too, was me.”   (Stephen Dunn)



“What I’m looking for is not out there, it is in me.”   (Helen Keller)

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“Don’t Exist. Explore. Challenge Yourself.”


“How do you expect to be happy with more if you’re not happy with what you have now?”   (Anonymous)


“How do I get rid of the fear?

Alas, this is the wrong question.

The only way to get rid of the fear is to stop doing things that might not work, to stop putting yourself out there, to stop doing work that matters.

No, the right question is, ‘How do I dance with the fear?’

Fear is not the enemy.  Paralysis is the enemy.”   (Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog, April 20, 2014)



“Don’t exist.

Get out, explore.

Challenge authority.  Challenge yourself.

Change forever.

Become who you say you always will.  Keep moving.  Don’t stop.  Start the revolution.  Become a freedom fighter.  Become a superhero.  Just because everyone doesn’t know your name doesn’t mean you don’t matter.

Are you happy?  Have you ever been happy?  What have you done today to matter?  Did you exist or did you live?  How did you thrive?

Become a chameleon – fit in anywhere.  Be a rock star – stand out everywhere.  Do nothing, do everything.  Forget everything, remember everyone.  Care, don’t just pretend to.  Listen to everyone.  Love everyone and nothing at the same time.  It’s impossible to be everything, but you can’t stop trying to do it all.  

Make this moment your reckoning.  Your head has been held under water for too long and now it is time to rise up and take your first true breath.

Do everything with exact calculation, nothing without meaning.  Do not make careful your words, but make no excuses for what you say.  F*** ’em all.  Set a goal for everyday and never be tired.”   (Brian Krans, A Constant Suicide)



“When nobody else celebrates you, learn to celebrate yourself.  When nobody else compliments you, then compliment yourself.  It’s not up to other people to keep you encouraged.  It’s up to you.  Encouragement should come from the inside.”   (Joel Osteen)



“Who wants to be normal when we can be special?”   (Phoebe Halliwell, ‘Charmed’)

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“Every Morning We Are Born Again / Live Each Moment in Full”


“Every morning we are born again.  What we do today is what matters most.”   (Buddha)



“Hello babies.  Welcome to Earth.  It’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter.  It’s round and wet and crowded.  On the outside, babies, you’ve got a hundred years here.  There’s only one rule that I know of, babies — G** damn it, you’ve got to be kind.”   (Kurt Vonnegut, ‘God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater’)



“A lifetime is not what’s between

The moments of birth and death.

A lifetime is one moment

between my two little breaths.

The present, the here, the now,

That’s all the life I get,

I live each moment in full,

In kindness, in peace, without regret.”   (Chade Menge)



“My whole teaching consists of two words, meditation and love.  Meditate so that you can feel immense silence, and love so that your life can become a song, a dance, a celebration. You will have to move between the two, and if you can move easily, if you can move without any effort, you have learned the greatest thing in life.”   (Osho, Come, Come, Yet Again Come)



“What holds most people back isn’t the quality of their ideas, but their lack of faith in themselves.  You have to live your life as if you are already where you want to be.”   (Russell Simmons – Do You!)



“When you run after your thoughts, you are like a dog chasing a stick.  Every time a stick is thrown, you run after it.  Instead, be like a lion who, rather than chasing after the stick, turns to face the thrower.  One only throws a stick at a lion once.”  (Milarepa)

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“Never Surrender Your Hopes and Dreams / You Have Everything You Need”


“Do not limit yourself to your own preconceptions of yourself, but throw yourself out onto a blank page that you haven’t written on yet, and see what you find out about you, see what story unfolds, see what happens!  I always do this, and sometimes it can be very frightening! Too very often I have a blank page with nothing written on it yet!  I feel as though I am a soul with a single covering – my body of skin – and that’s the only thing between me on the inside and the rest of the world!  It’s quite frightening to begin each day on a blank page, forgetting your own preconceptions of yourself and allowing your mind to embrace the new!  It is like meeting yourself for the first time, over and over again!”   (C. JoyBell C.)



Never surrender your hopes and dreams to the fateful limitations others have placed on their own lives.  The vision of your true destiny does not reside within the blinkered outlook of the naysayers and the doom prophets. Judge not by their words, but accept advice based on the evidence of actual results.  Do not be surprised should you find a complete absence of anything mystical or miraculous in the manifested reality of those who are so eager to advise you. Friends and family who suffer the lack of abundance, joy, love, fulfillment and prosperity in their own lives really have no business imposing their self-limiting beliefs on your reality experience.”   (Anthony St. Maarten)



“The right moment.

You might be waiting for things to settle down.  For the kids to be old enough, for work to calm down, for the economy to recover, for the weather to cooperate, for your bad back to let up just a little…

The thing is, people who make a difference never wait for just the right time. They know that it will never arrive.

Instead, they make their ruckus when they are short of sleep, out of money, hungry, in the middle of a domestic mess and during a blizzard.  Whenever.

As long as whenever is now.”   (Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog, April 13, 2014)



“‘Everything will happen as was written by the Lord,’ replied the prophet. ‘There are moments when tribulations occur in our lives, and we cannot avoid them.  But they are there for some reason.’

‘What reason?’

‘That is a question we cannot answer before, or even during the trials.  Only when we have overcome them do we understand why they were there.’”    (Paulo Coelho, The Fifth Mountain)



“You have everything you need for complete peace and total happiness right now.”   (Wayne W. Dyer)

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“Take Hold of Your Own Life”


“Take hold of your own life.

See that the whole existence is celebrating.

These trees are not serious, these birds are not serious.

The rivers and the oceans are wild,

and everywhere there is fun,

everywhere there is joy and delight.

Watch existence,

listen to the existence and become part of it.”   (Osho)



“Accept everything about yourself – I mean everything.  You are you and that is the beginning and the end – no apologies, no regrets.”   (Henry A. Kissinger)



“This above all:  to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night of the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.”   (William Shakespeare)



“When I say it’s you I like, I’m talking about that part of you that knows that life is far more than anything you can ever see or hear or touch.  That deep part of you that allows you to stand for those things without which humankind cannot survive.  Love that conquers hate, peace that rises triumphant over war and justice that proves more powerful than greed.”   (Fred Rogers)



“Yeah, about the test…

The test will measure whether you are an informed, engaged, and productive citizen of the world, and it will take place in schools and bars and hospitals and dorm rooms and in places of worship. You will be tested on first dates, in job interviews, while watching football, and while scrolling through your Twitter feed.  The test will judge your ability to think about things other than celebrity marriages, whether you’ll be easily persuaded by empty political rhetoric, and whether you’ll be able to place your life and your community in a broader context.  The test will last your entire life, and it will be comprised of the millions of decisions that, when taken together, will make your life yours. And everything, everything, will be on it.  …I know, right?”   (John Green)



“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”   (John Wooden)

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