A Soul on Fire

“The most powerful weapon on earth is a soul on fire.”
– Ferdinand Foch

Data

“… Data paves the road to the bottom. It is the lazy way to figure out what to do next. It’s obsessed with the short-term.

Data gets us the Kardashians.”

Actually, more data might not be what you’re hoping for, Seth Godin

Harvesting Ideas

“It is not simply the brightest who have the best ideas; it is those who are best at harvesting ideas from others. It is not only the most determined who drive change; it is those who most fully engage with like-minded people. And it is not wealth or prestige that best motivates people; it is respect and help from peers.”

Alex “Sandy” Pentland

Solitude

“Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.”
– Edward Gibbon

(via Quietrev.com)

Dear mom,

“…Because I know that somewhere, out there, there is a mom who feels guilty every time she goes to “work” (whether it’s a job, a business, a personal creative project, or any vocation that feels meaningful to her). Somewhere, I know there’s a mom who feels guilty about writing her novel, running her blog, or pursuing her dream job, because she feels like throwing herself into that type of endeavor might “steal” time away from her kids and her family. Because it might make her a “bad mom.”…”

A letter to my mom, by Alexandra Franzen.

Ask Yourself…

“Ask yourself if you would do it if nobody would ever see it, you would never be compensated for it and nobody wanted it.”
– Ernst Haas

(via Oliver Jeffers)

Nonsense

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, It’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.”
— Dr. Seuss

(via)

Moderation

“Having small touches of colour makes it more colourful than having the whole thing in colour.”
— Dieter Rams

Challenged

“I know that I’m not the easiest person to live with. The challenge I put on myself is so great that the person I live with feels himself challenged. I bring a lot to bear, and I don’t know how not to.”
– Maya Angelou

Tell Me What You Did Today

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” — Mahatma Gandhi

Tell Me What You Did Today, And I’ll Tell You Who You Are, by Benjamin P. Hardy

(via Jocelyn)

Solitude

“Our capacity for what psychoanalyst Adam Phillips has termed “fertile solitude” is absolutely essential not only for our creativity but for the basic fabric of our happiness — without time and space unburdened from external input and social strain, we’d be unable to fully inhabit our interior life, which is the raw material of all art.”

Artist Louise Bourgeois on How Solitude Enriches Creative Work

Change

“Even when change is elective, it will disorient you. You may go through anxiety. You will miss aspects of your former life. It doesn’t matter. The trick is to know in advance of making any big change that you’re going to be thrown off your feet by it. So you prepare for this inevitable disorientation and steady yourself to get through it. Then you take the challenge, make the change, and achieve your dream.” 

– Harvey Mackay

(I have posted this quote before, years ago. Always coming back to this one when I go through phases of massive change. Deep breaths.)

Empathy

“Traits like humility, courage, and empathy are easily overlooked – but it’s immensely important to find them in your closest relationships.”
– Laura Linney

Fear

“What about fear? Originals feel fear, too. They’re afraid of failing, but what sets them apart from the rest of us is that they’re even more afraid of failing to try. They know you can fail by starting a business that goes bankrupt or by failing to start a business at all. They know that in the long run, our biggest regrets are not our actions but our inactions. The things we wish we could redo, if you look at the science, are the chances not taken.”
Adam Grant

Generosity

“Being a giver is not good for a 100-yard dash, but it’s valuable in a marathon.”
Adam Grant

Currency of Leadership

“I think the currency of leadership is transparency. You’ve got to be truthful. I don’t think you should be vulnerable every day, but there are moments where you’ve got to share your soul and conscience with people and show them who you are, and not be afraid of it.”
– Howard Schultz

Big Questions

“… By all means, get it right. Get it right the first time. Successful makers of change embrace the hierarchy of importance, though, and refuse to engage with a fight about right when it’s vitally important to focus on important instead.”

Big questions before little ones, Seth Godin

Middle-Age

“By middle age you might begin to see, retrospectively, the dominant motifs that have been running through your various decisions. You might begin to see how all your different commitments can be integrated into one meaning and purpose. You might see the social problem your past has made you uniquely equipped to tackle. You might have enough clarity by now to orient your life around a true north on some ultimate horizon.”

The Middle-Age Surge, by David Brooks

Honor

“To seek honor before profit is the surest means of finding profit with honor.”
– Félix Nadar

Photographer Félix Nadar on the Single Most Important Factor in Becoming a Commercially Successful Artist

Love

12907274_1150043038361603_441685618_n

Yup.

Goals

“If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or objects.”
– Albert Einstein

What You See

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
– Henry David Thoreau

Emailing Busy People

Don’t “keep in touch.” It drives busy people crazy. Treat e-mailing them as you would knocking on their door and interrupting dinner. Treat it that seriously and use it that sparingly.

Tim Ferris on How to Get Busy Influencers to Share Your Stuff

Beauty

“Beauty is that in the presence of which we feel more alive.”
– John O’Donohue

Beauty Is an Edge of Becoming