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Moving Mountains: Eight Inspiring Self-Help Quotes

Mary Holmes By Mary Holmes Published on January 16, 2017
This article was updated on May 24, 2018

Most of us are in the process of self-improvement, whether we see ourselves as being on a great journey to self actualization, or we just want to be able to complete our tax return on time. In either case, the goal is to be better at being a person. However, as the year ticks over and time inevitably slips away from us, the daily toils and struggles of life means that we can lose that spark of motivation, jettisoning our loftier goals. In these doldrums, we could all use a nudge in the right direction. With this in mind we’ve compiled a list of inspirational quotes from self-help books and inspirational memoirs. 

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Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

A man’s true delight is to do the things he was made for.

Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted. And experience is often the most valuable thing you have to offer.

Mitch Albom, Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man and Life's Greatest Lesson

Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn’t. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted. “A tension of opposites, like a pull on a rubber band. And most of us live somewhere in the middle. “ Sounds like a wrestling match, I say. “A wrestling match.” He laughs. “Yes, you could describe life that way.” So which side wins, I ask? “Which side wins?” He smiles at me, the crinkled eyes, the crooked teeth. “Love wins. Love always wins.

Brené Brown, Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

The willingness to show up changes us, It makes us a little braver each time

Timothy Ferriss, Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers

Happiness is wanting what you have

M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values, and Spiritual Growth

When we love someone our love becomes demonstrable or real only through our exertion - through the fact that for that someone (or for ourselves) we take an extra step or walk an extra mile. Love is not effortless.

Shauna Niequist, Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living

I don't want to get to the end of my life and look back and realize that the best thing about me was I was organized.

Anaïs Nin, The Diary of Anaïs Nin, Vol. 1: 1931-1934

What we call our destiny is truly our character and that character can be altered. The knowledge that we are responsible for our actions and attitudes does not need to be discouraging, because it also means that we are free to change this destiny. One is not in bondage to the past, which has shaped our feelings, to race, inheritance, background. All this can be altered if we have the courage to examine how it formed us. We can alter the chemistry provided we have the courage to dissect the elements.

I love to read, cook, and travel. My favourite books are anything Jane Austen or Georgette Heyer, but I also love non-fiction history and self-help.


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