Quotes

I’ve been lackadaisical since Sunday night, after I indulged in three hours of Netflix — and who said having no friends isn’t fun? At work this week, I’ve been dragging my feet and I drank enough coffee that my name can legally be “Starbucks.”

So, to whom did I turn to when coffee stopped being excitingly stimulating? The internet, of course, for some of my favorite motivational and life inspiring quotes to help me get through the day.

It makes me feel confident and optimistic about the future, and I think we should always feel that way about our futures. The future is a blank canvas and each one of us are artists; let’s all channel are inner-Lenardo da Vinci and paint us a “Mona Lisa-esque” future (was that cheesy enough for you?)

Save these quotes and use them as inspiration — for when the caffeine just becomes a frequent trip to the bathroom or for a rainy day when all motivation seems to be lost — to be a better you and live each day fully, and I encourage you all to share these with people. Because the right words together are so empowering, and make all the difference.

“There is something about words. In expert hands, manipulated deftly, they take you prisoner. Wind themselves around your limbs like spider silk, and when you are so enthralled you cannot move, they pierce your skin, enter your blood, numb your thoughts. Inside you they work their magic.” (Diane Setterfield)

12 Quotes that just might change your life

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Find The Beauty In Life

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As I make my way through downtown Lawrence, Kan., I notice a man making noise on two-empty coffee cans. The noise is an orchestrated effort to sound like the song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” As I try to recollect the popular lyrics, while enjoying this unusual rendition, I stop and start to walk towards the man. I compliment him on his creativity to make such a beautiful harmony out of coffee cans. He pauses for a moment and looks at me and says, “I was given two-empty coffee cans by a stranger. Now, I’m making music with them. Life is beautiful, but often people are blinded by all the ugliness. I could have been bitter about a stranger giving me these two coffee cans, instead I made music. That’s the beauty of life: beauty comes in many different forms. You just have to recognize it.”

I left inspired and wanted to adopt this idea that life is beautiful, no matter the circumstance. Unfortunately, I feel like people are making life a list full of problems than something beautiful. We don’t have to search long to find negativity. Log onto Facebook or your Twitter account and see the things people are talking about. I would venture to guess that half of what they’re talking about are complaints or problems going on in their life. If I wanted to see the negativity in the world, then I would watch the local news more.

If the biggest complaint you have is stress over your salary job or which should be served with dinner — when 870 million people are suffering from malnourishment and 10.4 million American adults are unemployed — then life isn’t bad.

If a homeless man can find joy from two-empty coffee cans, then who are we to complain about the privileges of having a job and food to eat? I’m not saying that venting is bad, I’m guilty of that, too. I’m suggesting that the positive-to-negative comment ratio be higher than the negative-to-positive comment ratio.

It’s easier to complain about something than to do something about it. I think the problem is that people like to blame others for their problems instead of taking responsibility for their own life. I was infected with this kind of thinking. If I woke up in a bad mood it was the school’s fault for starting at 7:45 a.m. If I did poorly on a test it was because the teacher failed to teach me. If I didn’t perform well in sports it was my parents fault for not buying me the latest-technological gear.

This is a cowardly way of living, by blaming others for your shortcomings; instead, focus on the good things in your life. I wasn’t born to be a spectator of my life, but to be the lead role and it was time for me to start living my life. I will admit, in my opinion, that I think there is more to life than going to school, finding a job, paying bills, starting a family, and growing old — this systematic approach to “living” is outdated and people get sucked into this kind of living and fail to live out their dreams; Now not all people, but most, have things they wish they did before being tied down with all these commitments and responsibilities.

I fell victim to this kind of thinking. I have my degree and now I’m in the transition process from college into corporate America — let me know if any of y’all are hiring, ha ha — and I can’t believe how fast the time has gone. My college career, in retrospect, seems like one big blur (that’s not because of the booze, either), but I regret not doing MORE.

I was so focused on fraternizing, partying, and sporting events that I didn’t soak in everything theUniversity of Kansas had to offer. I’ve been socialized by media on college “culture” on what college is about (going to parties every weekend, drinking all day, going to class only when attendance was necessary, selling your books for booze, one-night stands, etc.) that I didn’t live my entire college career the way I wanted, but the way I thought you were suppose to. I’m not blaming anybody for conditioning me on college expectations, because my actions are in my control, but college isn’t about partying, booze and hook-ups; just like life isn’t just about going to school, getting a corporate job, paying bills, starting a family, and growing old.

Bear in mind, going to school, getting a job, and having a family are important milestones in one’s life, but I feel it’s not what the entirety of life is just about. Life is about taking coffee cans and making melodies – that’s the beauty of life that goes unrecognized. Life is about looking at the ugly and seeing the beauty — not letting anyone tell you what the beauty is.

I often imagine what the world would be like if people had the inability to feel and think negatively. Human emotion is the most powerful thing on earth, in my opinion. All wars, genocides and senseless crimes are provoked by negative emotion. But there is good news, just like we have the power to commit such emotionally-provoked crimes, we have the same power to stop it. Spread positivity in replacement of negativity. We need to keep the world moving forward, not backward. That’s the beauty of life: we have the power to change the world and our lives for the better. I think it’s time we start seeing the beauty in life, instead of the ugliness.

I want to hear from you: what are some life pleasures that you experience daily that many people might not understand or take for granted?

The “L” Word

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The clock reads 2 a.m. when my cell phone’s ringer violently awakens me. As the sluggishness of my body starts to wear off like a bad hangover, I grab my phone. 10 missed calls from the same number. Horrific thoughts start to fill my head. My phone alerts me there’s a new voicemail. I’m hesitant to listen to it, but curiosity and fear consume my body like an addiction. I hit the voicemail button. After I listen to the message, I can’t get it to stop playing in my head. I’m paralyzed by it. I was told there was an “accident” and now someone I love is dead. My memory is hyperactive, remembering the memories we shared and denying what is. A strong sense of guilt brings me back to the harsh reality. The guilt is waiting until later (in this case, never) to tell this person how much they meant to me and for being too self-absorbed with my life to reach out. I’m sobbing, cold and alone. My life is in a million pieces. And then I wake up.

It’s a nightmare that happens too often, but brings clarity to my life. It reminds me how important each day is; every day is a blessing. Life doesn’t come with a guarantee, neither does tomorrow. Sometimes later never comes. I think it’s important we think about that when we tell ourselves that we’ll do something later – there is nothing you are doing right now that is more valuable than never doing something.

This is ironic, because we live in a digitally advanced society that offers sites, apps and services that interconnect people at the touch of their finger tips or at a click of a button. How is there no time right now when this generation has championed the term “multitasker”? Why are we waiting until later when we can do multiple things at once?

Maybe I’m being too idealistic here. It’s ideal that people get the most out of life. It’s ideal to be reminded that you are loved. It’s ideal to see the beauty in life and to have an optimistic attitude towards life. Maybe people do want these things, but right now they are too busy to focus on what’s really important in their life. Maybe it’s society telling us what’s important and setting cockamamie expectations to fulfill a spurious void that we created. Maybe people need to be more realistic and understand life is happening now, not later.

I’m not concerned with who is to blame for why we procrastinate living our life. I’m more concerned with having you realize this and doing something about it. I don’t write for myself. I write for people who have the power to make a difference and will.

I’m trying to enable people like you to make the world a better pace right now, not later. I do this because there is something we can all offer the world. For me, at least right now, it’s writing motivational columns to tell people to make a difference. It might not sound like much, but at least I’m making an impact. What kind of impact do you want to have? Whatever it is you just thought of, go and do it now, not later. Never let the “L” word affect you, again