There are a lot of cheesy motivational inspirational quotes on posters in dentist offices or regular offices or school classrooms, but I tend to think they’re entirely lame. Here are some of my favorite inspirational quotes from random sources – smart people, regular people, books, television, movies, etc. They aren’t the kind of inspiration like “You’re special! You can do it!” They’re more like “Get off your ass and live your life or you’ll regret it.”
I put them behind a cut in case the list gets long and unruly.
“Don’t tell me what I can’t do!” – John Locke, Lost
“Battle not with monsters lest ye become a monster; and if you gaze into the abyss the abyss gazes into you.” -Friedrich Nietzsche
“For most of human history we have searched for our place in the cosmos. Who are we? What are we? We find that we inhabit an insignificant planet of a hum-drum star lost in a galaxy tucked away in some forgotten corner of a universe in which there are far more galaxies than people. We make our world significant by the courage of our questions, and by the depth of our answers.” – Carl Sagan
“Buy the ticket. Take the ride.” – Hunter S. Thompson
“Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.” — Mark Twain
“Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in that grey twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt
“Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.” – Dr Emmett Brown, Back to the Future
“The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.” – ?
“If we did all the things we were capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.” -Thomas Edison
“I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” – Network
“After all, tomorrow is another day!” – Gone with the Wind
“You get what you settle for.” – Thelma and Louise
“You can like the life you’re living,
you can live the life you like.”
“I remember one morning getting up at dawn,
there was such a sense of possibility.
You know that feeling?
And I remember thinking to myself
this is the beginning of happiness.
This is where it starts
and of course there will always be more.
It never occurred to me it wasn’t the beginning.
It was happiness. It was the moment. Right then.”
– The Hours
“What a beautiful death to die in the arms of your passion.” – Man on Wire
“There is no spoon.” – Neo, The Matrix
Sam : There are lots of hungry people in the world, Mal, and none of them are hungry because we went to the moon. None of them are colder and certainly none of them are dumber because we went to the moon.
Mallory: And we went to the moon. Do we really have to go to Mars?
Sam : Yes.
Mallory : Why?
Sam : Because it’s next. Because we came out of the cave, and we looked over the hill and we saw fire; and we crossed the ocean and we pioneered the west, and we took to the sky. The history of man is on a timeline of explorations and this is what’s next.
–The West Wing
“You’re born, you live and you die. There are no do-overs, no second chances to make things right if you frak ‘em up the first time. Not in this life anyway. Like I said, you make your choices and you live with them. And in end you are those choices.” –Kendra Shaw, Battlestar Galactica
“So, my little Amélie, you don’t have bones of glass. You can take life’s knocks. If you let this chance pass, eventually, your heart will become as dry and brittle as my skeleton. So, go get him, for Pete’s sake!” – Raymond Dufayel aka Glass Man, Amelie
“Every shadow no matter how deep is threatened by morning light.” – Izzi, The Fountain
“Why stand still when there’s all that life out there?” – The Doctor (10), Doctor Who
“A feeling of exultation overtook her, as if some power of significant import had been given her to control the working of her body and her soul. She grew daring and reckless, overestimating her strength. She wanted to swim far out, where no woman had swum before.” – The Awakening
“Don’t be hasty!” – Treebeard, Lord of the Rings
“A few times in my life I’ve had moments of absolute clarity, when for a few brief seconds the silence drowns out the noise and I can feel rather than think, and things seem so sharp and the world seems so fresh. I can never make these moments last. I cling to them, but like everything, they fade. I have lived my life on these moments. They pull me back to the present, and I realize that everything is exactly the way it was meant to be.” – George, A Single Man
View all problems as challenges.
Look upon negativities that arise as opportunities to learn and to grow.
Don’t run from them, condemn yourself, or bury your burden in saintly silence.
You have a problem? Great.
More grist for the mill. Rejoice, dive in, and investigate.
Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, “Mindfulness in Plain English”
Birth and Death is a grave event;
How transient is life!
Every minute is to be grasped.
Time waits for nobody.
Inscription on a Zen Gong
My religion is to live and die without regret. – Milarepa