This is a compilation of thoughts and quotes that I have found or written recently, as well as many that I've collected throughout the years. Most thoughts are posted randomly, as I feel inspired. A listing of quotes can be found alphabetically (check the 2008 and 2009 archives listing), or by source.

Feel free to suggest additions!

“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” – Proverbs 23:7

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Great Quotes on Obstacles

1. Obstacles can’t stop you. Problems can’t stop you. Most of all, other people can’t stop you. Only you can stop you. - Jeffrey Gitomer

2. Obstacles will look large or small to you according to whether you are large or small. - Orison Swett Marden

3. Obstacles are like wild animals. They are cowards but they will bluff you if they can. If they see you are afraid of them… they are liable to spring upon you; but if you look them squarely in the eye, they will slink out of sight. - Orison Swett Marden

4. Real obstacles don’t take you in circles. They can be overcome. Invented ones are like a maze. - Barbara Sher

5. To fight fear, act. To increase fear…wait, put off, postpone. - David J. Schwartz

6. We are built to conquer environment, solve problems, achieve goals, and we find no real satisfaction or happiness in life without obstacles to conquer and goals to achieve. - Maxwell Maltz

7. The marvelous richness of human experience would lose something of rewarding joy if there were no limitations to overcome. The hilltop hour would not be half so wonderful if there were no dark valleys to traverse. - Helen Keller

8. Every sale has five basic obstacles: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, no trust. - Zig Ziglar

9. Everyone who achieves success in a great venture solves each problem as they come to it. They helped themselves. And they were helped through powers known and unknown to them at the time they set out on their voyage. They kept going regardless of the obstacles they met. - W. Clement Stone

10. The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it. - Jean Baptiste Moliere

11. When we are sure that we are on the right road there is no need to plan our journey too far ahead. No need to burden ourselves with doubts and fears as to the obstacles that may bar our progress. We cannot take more than one step at a time. - Orison Swett Marden

12. What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity? Our attitude toward it. Every opportunity has a difficulty, and every difficulty has an opportunity. - Sidlow J. Baxter

13. You are the only real obstacle in your path to a fulfilling life. - Les Brown

14. When you are in the valley, keep your goal firmly in view and you will get the renewed energy to continue the climb. - Denis Waitley

15. It is not ease but effort, not facility but difficult, that makes man. There is perhaps no station in life in which difficulties do not have to be encountered and overcome before any decided means of success can be achieved. - Samuel Smiles

16. Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. - Hannah More

17. Obstacles are necessary for success because in selling, as in all careers of importance, victory comes only after many struggles and countless defeats. Yet each struggle, each defeat, sharpens your skills and strengths, your courage and your endurance, your ability and your confidence and thus each obstacle is a comrade-in-arms forcing you to become better… or quit. Each rebuff is an opportunity to move forward; turn away from them, avoid them, and you throw away your future. - Og Mandino

18. Press on. Obstacles are seldom the same size tomorrow as they are today. - Robert H. Schuller

19. The obstacle is the path. - Zen Saying

20. Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven’t half the strength you think they have. - Norman Vincent Peale

21. The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheaply, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods. - Thomas Paine

22. For a long time it seemed to me that real life was about to begin, but there was always some obstacle in the way. Something had to be got through first, some unfinished business; time still to be served, a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life. - Bette Howland

23. Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. - John Quincy Adams 

24. Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose. - Wayne Dyer

25. Most of our obstacles would melt away if, instead of cowering before them, we should make up our minds to walk boldly through them. - Orison Swett Marden

26. We are built to conquer environment, solve problems, achieve goals, and we find no real satisfaction or happiness in life without obstacles to conquer and goals to achieve.
- Maxwell Maltz

Adversity QuotesSee more at:

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Albert Einstein Quotes

Albert Einstein (1879 -1955) was a theoretical physicist and humanist who is widely regarded as one of the most influential scientists of all time. He is most famous for his Special and General Theories of Relativity, but contributed in other areas of physics. He won the Nobel Prize in physics for his explanation of the photoelectric effect.

Here are some great quotes from this genius of a man:

You never fail until you stop trying.

Creativity is intelligence having fun.

The best way to cheer yourself is to cheer somebody else up.

In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.

What is right is not always popular and what is popular is not always right.

I have never looked upon ease and happiness as ends in themselves - such an ethical basis I call more proper for a herd of swine.

Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

A happy man is too satisfied with the present to dwell too much on the future.

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution. It is, strictly speaking, a real factor in scientific research.

Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.

We should take care not to make the intellect our god; it has, of course, powerful muscles, but no personality.

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science.

Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.

Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.

Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.
Nature only shows us the tail of the lion. I am convinced, however, that the lion is attached to it, even though he cannot reveal himself directly because of his enormous size.

When a man sits with a pretty girl for an hour, it seems like a minute. But let him sit on a hot stove for a minute and it's longer than any hour. That's relativity.

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.

My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.

It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.

It is harder to crack a prejudice than an atom.

God is subtle, but he is not malicious.

I do not know with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.

The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.

As our circle of knowledge expands, so does the circumference of darkness surrounding it.

Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly.

Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.

If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.

Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.”

If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.

The difference between genius and stupidity is; genius has its limits.

Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.

Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.

I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university.

Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous.

A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.

I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.

Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves.

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is to not stop questioning.

If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?

Once you can accept the universe as matter expanding into nothing that is something, wearing stripes with plaid comes easy.

Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love.

Try not to become a man of success. Rather become a man of value.

The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.

When you trip over love, it is easy to get up. But when you fall in love, it is impossible to stand again.

It is not that I'm so smart. But I stay with the questions much longer.

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.

If A is a success in life, then A equals x plus y plus z. Work is x; y is play; and z is keeping your mouth shut

Any fool can know. The point is to understand.

Love is a better master than duty.

We dance for laughter, we dance for tears, we dance for madness, we dance for fears, we dance for hopes, we dance for screams, we are the dancers, we create the dreams.”

The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.

Men marry women with the hope they will never change. Women marry men with the hope they will change. Invariably they are both disappointed.

I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be.

Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.

Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming attractions.

Out of clutter, find simplicity.

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

I'd rather be an optimist and a fool than a pessimist and right.

Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.

God did not create evil. Just as darkness is the absence of light, evil is the absence of God.

Nothing happens until something moves.

Genius is 1% talent and 99% percent hard work.

The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.

We all know that light travels faster than sound. That's why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.

A ship is always safe at the shore - but that is NOT what it is built for.

I never made one of my discoveries through the process of rational thinking.

Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and it's beauty.

Imagination is the highest form of research.

If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.”

When the solution is simple, God is answering.

If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.

Never give up on what you really want to do. The person with big dreams is more powerful than one with all the facts.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Window: An Outlook on Life

Your outlook on life really can make a difference:

Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour a day to drain the fluids from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.

The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation. And every afternoon when the man in the bed next to the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window.

The man in the other bed would live for those one-hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and color of the outside world.

The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake, the man had said. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Lovers walked arm in arm amid flowers of every color of the rainbow. Grand old trees graced the landscape, and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance. As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the picturesque scene.

One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man could not hear the band, he could see it in his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words. Unexpectedly, an alien thought entered his head: Why should he have all the pleasure of seeing everything while I never get to see anything?

It didn't seem fair. As the thought fermented, the man felt ashamed at first. But as the days passed and he missed seeing more sights, his envy eroded into resentment and soon turned him sour. He began to brood and found himself unable to sleep. He should be by that window --- and that thought now controlled his life.

Late one night, as he lay staring at the ceiling, the man by the window began to cough.  He was choking on the fluid in his lungs. The other man watched in the dimly lit room as the struggling man by the window groped for the button to call for help. Listening from across the room, he never moved, never pushed his own button which would have brought the nurse running. In less than five minutes, the coughing and choking stopped, along with the sound of breathing. Now, there was only silence-deathly silence.

The following morning the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths. When she found the lifeless body of the man by the window, she was saddened and called the hospital attendant to take it away-no works, no fuss.

As soon as it seemed appropriate, the man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone. Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look. Finally, he would have the joy of seeing it all himself. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed...It faced a blank wall.

- Author unknown

Saturday, February 2, 2013

The Power of Positive Perception: Part 3

Continued excerpts from the great little book "Beyond Illusions: The Magic of Positive Perceptions" by Brad Barton:

(for more excerpts, see below)

"Know ye not that they which run in a race, run all; but one receiveth the prize - so run that ye may obtain." - 1 Corinthians 9:24

"Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it." - Charles Swindoll

When we focus on the 10% (what happens to us) and just sit in, bemoaning our fate and not move into the 90% (what we can do about it), we give what happens to us much more weight than it deserves.

When Viktor Frankl wrote of his experience in surviving the holocaust, he said that instead of focusing on the horror of every day events, we have the power to choose our response, and "in our response, lies our growth and freedom." (See Excerpts from Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl)

(From Brad's brother Will who experienced a tragic, life changing accident): "I lay there in real pain, struggling for breath.  Then something within me awakened.  I saw it all clearly.  The pain, the trial, the discipline were all part of a greater purpose, a refining process meant for growth and self-mastery.  This was my defining moment."

"Life is supposed to be hard.  That's why we are here - to experience and grow and learn and appreciate how wonderful it all is." - Will Barton

There is evil in the world.  There are flat tires and nasty neighbors.  There is trauma and tragedy, like falling out of a tree on a cold snowy day and landing on your head.  That's a fact.  But facts make up only 10% of reality.  Perception - and the way we apply our perception - is the other 90%.  It is in the 90s, this place of power, we gain the prize - freedom!

"Life is a bit like school, except that God gives us the test first; we study for them afterwards.  Truly from treasures disguised as infirmities come our greatest strengths." - Vance Anderson

My brother Will was aptly named.  He refused to walk away from his experience empty handed.  He and his family have paid a bitter price, but they did not leave their purchase on the counter.  His purchase, paid for in pain, is worth every penny.  By choosing not to focus on the grim circumstances, he used his will to alter his perspective.  He cashes in on what is ultimately worth many times the price of experience.  Just like us, Will strives daily to run his race, and win the prize - freedom!

"He who learns must suffer.  And even in our sleep, pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart.  And in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful* grace of God." - Aeschylus

* the word "awful" used to mean "awe-inspiring".

Having someone believe in me did not make my path easy.  It made it possible.

"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us.  What we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal." - Albert Pine

"My philosophy of life is that if we make up our mind what we are going to make of our lives, then work hard toward that goal, we never lose - somehow we win out." - Ronald Reagan

       "Basketball is like life; it is a series of interrelated events or 'plays'.  We move the ball forward from one play to the next in a never-ending march toward the final buzzer.  Along the way, opinions, judgments, and decisions that effect us significantly are made by people other than us - decisions that we have little or no control over.  Conclusions are drawn, judgments are made, verdicts are reached and sentences passed that seem to alter the course of our lives.
        It is all too easy to become focused on the call and thereby lose sight of the game.  Rather than wasting time and energy concentrating on the call - something over which we have little control - we should be anxiously engaged in the playing of the game." - Weber State University Coach Chick Hislop

Sometimes we do carry a heavier burden because of someone else's mistake.  That is a hard reality.  However, carrying the additional burden of anger and self pity adds needlessly to the heavy load we already bear.

"God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change
the courage to change the things I can
and the wisdom to know the difference."
- Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Nieburh

The way we play the game is the only thing we have control over - it is the only thing that matters.

As long as we focus on the poor call we are diverted from our game.  Don't get me wrong, wrongful accusations; accidents; misjudgments; poor decisions by others that affect us do cost us.  Sometimes they cost us dearly.  But, in life, they never cost the game - as long as we stay focused on the game and our attention and energy are not misdirected by the call.

"The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing." - Stephen Covey

The treasure is not so much in the winning, but in the pursuit.

To be unfettered by poor habit, weak constitution, and lack of responsibility, is to know true freedom.  Getting beyond illusions of circumstances, bad luck, and disadvantage - that is freedom.

"The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own.  You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president.  You realize that you control your own destiny." - Albert Ellis


To see more excerpts from Brad Barton's  book, see:

The Power of Positive Perception: Part 1
The Power of Positive Perception: Part 2