David Wise

Life : My 10 favorite quotes, yet.

June 16, 2015 | 7 Minute Read

Getting older makes you think.

I am about to be 25 years old and I love quotes. So, I asked myself :

What are the quotes that really changed me ?

You know : the one that makes you think; the one that changes the way you see the world. So here they are : 10 quotes for 10 values that I try to reach every day in order to become a better human being. And of course, I still have a lot of work on that.

1. Humility

After all, we only have 5 senses (and a brain) to be connected to the world. It’s certainly not enough to be aware of everything happening around us. Even if we make huge progresses on that path.(You have to see this video)

We probably feel 10% of what the world has to offer.

That’s why for me, humility it’s the most important value of ALL.

We don’t know everything about the world ; About our friends ; About that upset stranger we just crossed down the street; Sometimes even about our work. And it’s totally OK !

We often forget to let it go and keep moving forward. Life is just too short too be trapped by our ego.

“The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubt, while the stupid one are full of confidence.” — Charles Bukowski

2. Be Yourself & Shine

Oscar Wild famously said : “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.”

I feel that too much people are using “be yourself”, as a an excuse for they worst behaviors. Actually, I believe it’s more an invitation to be the best version of ourself.

Shining ? Yes. We are too often focused on looking for someone — or a “special one” — that is going to change our life and make us a better person.

But maybe, we could just start by being the light we are permanently looking for.

By being our true self we attract the right people. Something like : “Your vibe, attracts your tribe.”.

3. Listening

As François Truffaut once said : “Life has far more imagination than we have.”

Sometimes our brain and ego make plans and we stop listening to what life actually wants to tell us.

I believe we have so much to learn from the people we meet, and the experience we make.

It’s a kind of my life motto.

That’s why I believe serendipity is such an important thing. Even if it’s hard — sometimes — to know where we should allow our attention on.

4. Inner Honesty

This one is powerful because it mixes : humility, being yourself, and listening.

Honesty starts with being in peace with ourself. It’s something very intimate, but so important to face life properly.

I read an interesting difference between authenticity and transparency : “It is important to make distinction between being transparent and being clear. As I have learned, more exposure to information doesn’t equate with true understanding” — John Maeda

It’s ok to have our secret garden (and quite healthy ), we just need to be clear with ourself, and the people that surround us.

For work and professional life, honesty is close to self awareness, which is also very important. Right Gary ?

5. Be the change

This is a stronger version of the famous Gandhi’s quotation : “Be the change your wan’t to see in the world.”

Probably the most important quote of the selection. Very few things change by our opinion, but so much can be changed by our simple example. This is where credibility stands.

This is why parents, teachers, brothers, sisters, or any others person in contact with kids, have such an important role. Because as we grow, we tend to reproduce what w’ve seen as a kid. So let’s start to be the generation that shows the right way.

How can we expect to see the changes that we are not able to make ourselves ?

6. Life is an echo ?

I am not a scientist, and I am not pretending to be one, but I believe things work that way.

I believe everything works on a quantum level : somewhere, every action leads to a reaction. Like the “Butterfly Effect”.

The same way I believe we, human beings, are all connected. As the concept of noosphere developed by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, explain it.

And it’s actually a good news : if everything is contagious, it means we are all responsible for the world.

We can change it by our simple thoughts or actions.

7. Be the movement

First, this quote made me think a lot. Like a lot. But after a while, I agreed with it. We need to be in the movement. Can we argue about the wind ? No, it just exists.

Life is movement. It’s like riding a bicycle if you stop too long, you just fall. This guy words :

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving on.” — A. Einstein.

Whatever the direction we take, we need to choose one. The worst thing that could happen is being static. We always learn from doing something. If it’s positive it’s success, if it’s negative it’s experience.

It doesn’t mean to forget where we come from :

“If our friend, the flag, has taught me anything, it’s to go where the wind takes you. As long as you remain firmly attached to a rigid pole.” — Sheldon Cooper, The Big Bang Theory

8. Facing fears

That’s maybe the most important quote for my daily life. If I don’t have the opportunity to do something SCARY everyday, I try at least to do something NEW. Which is close : aren’t we afraid of the unknown ?

So I try to do new things as often as possible. Even the tiny ones : changing the itinerary on my way back home to discover new streets, for exemple.

For sure, we can’t face our biggest fears straight away, but surely step by step, we are able to earn some confidence on this path. This amazing TED explains why.

Start small, go big

They say : “Go out of your comfort zone”. But maybe it’s more about : extending our comfort zone ?

9. Courage

Yeah, sorry… “the only way it’s through”. End of the story.

Sometimes it’s tempting to not face a problem immediately. But the truth is : the more we wait, the more it becomes complicated and tense.

We probably have all experienced that. By fixing things early we keep them manageable.

“Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.” — Pema Chodron.

10. Being nice

Whatever happens, even if it’s hard sometimes : Be nice to people. It’s our commun, and only, duty.

What does it mean to me ? Something like : “Don’t do to others what you don’t want others do to you.” — The golden rule.

Or simply, my favorite :

“Be the person your dog thinks you are.” — Unknown

If you are not in the position you wished to be, be patient, and do not envy people who are. Use this as a positive inspiration.

If you are where you consider “ the top”, don’t be a douchebag, remember where you come from. Be grateful.

And You ? What are your favorite quotes about life & how you see the world ? Do you have some kind of life motto ? I would love to hear about that.

P.S: If you are wondering how the quotes have been made, I used spokenly (doesn’t work anymore); Quotescover ; Canva and Pablo. It’s really easy to make your own.

They are all available here. Of course, feel free to use them.

Thanks for reading.

I am David Wise, I live in Paris and I like to write about life, technologies & startups. This article was also posted on my Medium.