Focused And Determined Quotes

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Always remember, your focus determines your reality.
George Lucas
To conquer frustration, one must remain intensely focused on the outcome, not the obstacles.
T.F. Hodge (From Within I Rise: Spiritual Triumph over Death and Conscious Encounters with "The Divine Presence")
Yes,” I whisper. The red blinking light on one of the cameras catches my eye. I know I’m being recorded. “Yes,” I say more forcefully. Everyone is drawing away from me—Gale, Cressida, the insects—giving me the stage. But I stay focused on the red light. “I want to tell the rebels that I am alive. That I’m right here in District Eight, where the Capitol has just bombed a hospital full of unarmed men, women, and children. There will be no survivors.” The shock I’ve been feeling begins to give way to fury. “I want to tell people that if you think for one second the Capitol will treat us fairly if there’s a cease-fire, you’re deluding yourself. Because you know who they are and what they do.” My hands go out automatically, as if to indicate the whole horror around me. “This is what they do! And we must fight back!” I’m moving in toward the camera now, carried forward by my rage. “President Snow says he’s sending us a message? Well, I have one for him. You can torture us and bomb us and burn our districts to the ground, but do you see that?” One of the cameras follows as I point to the planes burning on the roof of the warehouse across from us. The Capitol seal on a wing glows clearly through the flames. “Fire is catching!” I am shouting now, determined that he will not miss a word. “And if we burn, you burn with us!
Suzanne Collins (Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3))
What you focus on and the way you think will determine the way you live.
Gregory Dickow (Soul Cure: How to Heal Your Pain and Discover Your Purpose)
Don’t be afraid. Be focused. Be determined. Be hopeful. Be empowered.
Michelle Obama
The elegance under pressure is the result of fearlessness.
Ashish Patel
If the fire in your heart is strong enough, it will burn away any obstacles that come your way.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
An unfinished book. left unattended, turns feral, and she would need all her focus, will and ruthless determination to tame it again.
Ruth Ozeki (A Tale for the Time Being)
If life throws you a few bad notes or vibrations, don't let them interrupt or alter your song.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
At the very moment when people underestimate you is when you can make a breakthrough.
Germany Kent
Why can't I go to Idris with you, then? Because it's not safe for you there O and it's safe for me here? I've been nearly killed almost a dozen times in the past month. That's because Valentine has been concentrating on the two Mortal Instruments that were here. He's going to shift his focus to Idris now. We all know it-- We're hardly as certain of anything as all that. And the Clave wants to meet Clarissa. You know that, Jace. The Clave can screw itself.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
Your field of focus determines what you find in life.
T. Harv Eker (Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth)
In the game of life, we all receive a set of variables and limitations in the field of play. We can either focus on the lack thereof or empower ourselves to create better realities with the pieces we play the game with.
T.F. Hodge (From Within I Rise: Spiritual Triumph over Death and Conscious Encounters with "The Divine Presence")
The most fulfilling adventures happen when you start your journey without knowing where you’re going, because only then are you free to experience the unexpected detours you’re meant to take.
A.J. Darkholme (Rise of the Morningstar (The Morningstar Chronicles, #1))
Wrong. Enemies don't fight with such determined passion. That kind of focus is reserved for friends at odds with one another." pg 69 Tomas to Vlad
Heather Brewer (Twelfth Grade Kills (The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod, #5))
A good definition of being a victim is when you keep the focus outside yourself, when you look outside yourself for someone to blame for your present circumstances, or to determine your purpose, fate, or worth.
Edith Eger (The Choice: Embrace the Possible)
Positive thinking is powerful thinking. If you want happiness, fulfillment, success and inner peace, start thinking you have the power to achieve those things. Focus on the bright side of life and expect positive results.
Germany Kent
When you start loving yourself and respecting your time and energy, things will change. Get to know your worth, and your value will go up.
Germany Kent
I can't control the naysayers. I can control my attitude and work ethic and determination and that's what I'm focused on now.
Tim Tebow
Always remember your focus determines your reality.
Peter Kingsley
I AM ALL ABOUT SELF-DETERMINATION. Will. Control. I determine my path in life. I decide my failures and successes. Screw fate. Destiny can kiss my ass. If I want something badly enough, I can have it. If I focus, sacrifice, there is nothing I can’t do.
Emma Chase (Tangled (Tangled, #1))
I am, and always have been - first, last, and always - a child of America. You raised me. I grew up in the pastures and hills of Texas, but I had been to thirty-four states before I learned how to drive. When I caught the stomach flu in the fifth grade, my mother sent a note to school written on the back of a holiday memo from Vice President Biden. Sorry, sir—we were in a rush, and it was the only paper she had on hand. I spoke to you for the first time when I was eighteen, on the stage of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, when I introduced my mother as the nominee for president. You cheered for me. I was young and full of hope, and you let me embody the American dream: that a boy who grew up speaking two languages, whose family was blended and beautiful and enduring, could make a home for himself in the White House. You pinned the flag to my lapel and said, “We’re rooting for you.” As I stand before you today, my hope is that I have not let you down. Years ago, I met a prince. And though I didn’t realize it at the time, his country had raised him too. The truth is, Henry and I have been together since the beginning of this year. The truth is, as many of you have read, we have both struggled every day with what this means for our families, our countries, and our futures. The truth is, we have both had to make compromises that cost us sleep at night in order to afford us enough time to share our relationship with the world on our own terms. We were not afforded that liberty. But the truth is, also, simply this: love is indomitable. America has always believed this. And so, I am not ashamed to stand here today where presidents have stood and say that I love him, the same as Jack loved Jackie, the same as Lyndon loved Lady Bird. Every person who bears a legacy makes the choice of a partner with whom they will share it, whom the American people will “hold beside them in hearts and memories and history books. America: He is my choice. Like countless other Americans, I was afraid to say this out loud because of what the consequences might be. To you, specifically, I say: I see you. I am one of you. As long as I have a place in this White House, so will you. I am the First Son of the United States, and I’m bisexual. History will remember us. If I can ask only one thing of the American people, it’s this: Please, do not let my actions influence your decision in November. The decision you will make this year is so much bigger than anything I could ever say or do, and it will determine the fate of this country for years to come. My mother, your president, is the warrior and the champion that each and every American deserves for four more years of growth, progress, and prosperity. Please, don’t let my actions send us backward. I ask the media not to focus on me or on Henry, but on the campaign, on policy, on the lives and livelihoods of millions of Americans at stake in this election. And finally, I hope America will remember that I am still the son you raised. My blood still runs from Lometa, Texas, and San Diego, California, and Mexico City. I still remember the sound of your voices from that stage in Philadelphia. I wake up every morning thinking of your hometowns, of the families I’ve met at rallies in Idaho and Oregon and South Carolina. I have never hoped to be anything other than what I was to you then, and what I am to you now—the First Son, yours in actions and words. And I hope when Inauguration Day comes again in January, I will continue to be.
Casey McQuiston (Red, White & Royal Blue)
Life without the determination to do something meaningful each day is like a ship sailing in the vast oceans without a glimpse of the shore.
Prem Jagyasi
We tend to place a lot of emphasis on our circumstances, assuming that what happens to us (or fails to happen) determines how we feel. From this perspective, the small-scale details of how you spend your day aren’t that important, because what matters are the large-scale outcomes, such as whether or not you get a promotion or move to that nicer apartment. According to Gallagher, decades of research contradict this understanding. Our brains instead construct our worldview based on what we pay attention to.
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
Don't be discouraged if people don't see your vision, your harvest. All they see from their perspective is that you're watering a whole lot of dirt. They don't SEE what seeds you've been planting with blood, sweat, tears and lack of sleep. Make sure you don't abandon or neglect it because "they" don't see it. You have to KNOW and believe for yourself. They don't see the roots and what's budding under the dirt. But it's okay, because it's NOT meant for them to see it. While you wait, MASTER it. You continue to do YOUR work and have unwavering faith! Remember why you started planting in the first place. Your harvest WILL come!
Yvonne Pierre (The Day My Soul Cried: A Memoir)
Don’t fight with narrow minded people; be determined to compel them to change their mindsets about who you stand to be, not by arguments, but by focusing on what you do every day. If they change it, fine; if they don’t, fine. The good news is that you are pursuing excellence!
Israelmore Ayivor (The Great Hand Book of Quotes)
The quality of our lives is determined by the focus of our attention.
Cheri Huber
It’s simple. Your field of focus determines what you find in life.
T. Harv Eker (Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth)
am blessed. I am prosperous. I am successful.” “I am victorious. I am talented. I am creative.” “I am wise. I am healthy. I am in shape.” “I am energetic. I am happy. I am positive.” “I am passionate. I am strong. I am confident.” “I am secure. I am beautiful. I am attractive.” “I am valuable. I am free. I am redeemed.” “I am forgiven. I am anointed. I am accepted.” “I am approved. I am prepared. I am qualified.” “I am motivated. I am focused. I am disciplined.” “I am determined. I am patient. I am kind.” “I am generous. I am excellent. I am equipped.” “I am empowered. I am well able.” “I am a child of the Most High God.
Joel Osteen (The Power of I Am: Two Words That Will Change Your Life Today)
You’ve lost a lot, but you’ve gained closure. You are now balanced, centered, focused, and filled with peace surrounding you in your heart, mind, body, and soul. Your pride was hurt, but you would rather walk alone and be more willing to give and learn more about the queen you are.
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
Our attention is focused on classifying, analyzing, and determining levels of wrongness rather than on what we and others need and are not getting.
Marshall B. Rosenberg (Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life)
The key to success―keep swimming. Even when they tap you on the shoulder to say the pool has been drained, just keep swimming.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Making Wishes: Quotes, Thoughts, & a Little Poetry for Every Day of the Year)
When you realize your life isn't heading in the direction you wish, rather than wasting time complaining about the situation, just focus on the direction you wish to proceed with determination.
Nanette Mathews
So many times in life we're faced with a choice: when a task becomes super difficult, will we flip out and quit, or will we stay focused and keep fighting?". "With strong faith in God and some serious determination, every dream is possible - especially if your mama refuses to let you fly home, fry chicken, and give up
Gabrielle Douglas (Grace, Gold, and Glory: My Leap of Faith)
The things you think about determine the things you think about”—meaning the more you focus on something, the more likely your brain is to focus on it.
Katherine Center (Happiness for Beginners)
By nature, your soul is soft, gentle, loving and kind. It is forgiving, peaceful, and humble. Confident and comforting in times of despair, your soul is strong, focused, and determined in the mission called life.
Debbie Ford (The 21-Day Consciousness Cleanse: A Breakthrough Program for Connecting with Your Soul's Deepest Purpose)
There is nothing in this world that you cannot do. Every goal is achievable. You just need to focus on your objectives, be persistent in your efforts and work hard to make it happen. There can be no hurdle uncrossable, no obstacle invincible and no stumbling block insurmountable.
If you were determined to get enjoyment out of every moment, you would learn to do whatever it took. What it takes is not listening to negative thoughts, yours or anyone else's. Disregarding negative thoughts isn't hiding our head in the sand, but simply not allowing the negative to clutter and influence over our experience of the present moment. The moment is never improved or helped by negativity, although we are programmed to think our negative thoughts, worries, and fears serve a useful function. When you really examine this idea, however, you see that negativity doesn't serve. Focusing on negativity and fears doesn't make anyone a better person, nor does doing that help us function better in the world. In fact, the truth is quite the opposite.
Gina Lake (What About Now?: Reminders for Being in the Moment)
This transformation helped me to become productive and my mindset became focused on change for the better. My identity was the essence of me, and the path without fear was ahead of me as I walked, knowing that happiness, grace, joy, and love were my birthright!
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
Be determined to be determined.
Onyi Anyado
All great people had critics but they still believe in the beauty of their dreams, fully persuaded to stay focused and determined for the realisation of their dreams.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
All great people had critics but they stay believe in the beauty of their dreams, fully persuaded to stay focused and determined for the realisation of their dreams.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
And I'm still alive. That's what I have to focus on. Because I want to live. Even now I can't let myself give up. And that's something I didn't know about myself before - that I have such dogged determination and strength. That I can be completely focused on a goal and work long past what I thought my endurance was, when I have to.
Cheryl Rainfield (Stained)
As someone who has dealt with his fair share of disappointment, I’ve learned the best way to cope with trouble is to approach every situation with eyes wide open; focused and determined.
Carlos Wallace (The Other 99 T.Y.M.E.S: Train Your Mind to Enjoy Serenity)
If everyone has the same number of hours in the day, why do some people seem to get so much more done than others? How do they do more, achieve more, earn more, have more? If time is the currency of achievement, then why are some able to cash in their allotment for more chips than others? The answer is they make getting to the heart of things the heart of their approach. They go small. Going small is ignoring all the things you could do and doing what you should do. It’s recognizing that not all things matter equally and finding the things that matter most. It’s a tighter way to connect what you do with what you want. It’s realizing that extraordinary results are directly determined by how narrow you can make your focus.
Gary Keller (The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results)
Joel’s face swam across my vision and I blinked, goose bumps running up my arms. I shook his memory away, determined to stay focused, although my heart caved at the thought of his last words to us, right here in this very spot: Take care of each other. I’d be damned if I was going to let him down now.
Rachael Wade (The Gates (Resistance, #2))
There is evidence that the honoree [Leonard Cohen] might be privy to the secret of the universe, which, in case you're wondering, is simply this: everything is connected. Everything. Many, if not most, of the links are difficult to determine. The instrument, the apparatus, the focused ray that can uncover and illuminate those connections is language. And just as a sudden infatuation often will light up a person's biochemical atmosphere more pyrotechnically than any deep, abiding attachment, so an unlikely, unexpected burst of linguistic imagination will usually reveal greater truths than the most exacting scholarship. In fact. The poetic image may be the only device remotely capable of dissecting romantic passion, let alone disclosing the inherent mystical qualities of the material world. Cohen is a master of the quasi-surrealistic phrase, of the "illogical" line that speaks so directly to the unconscious that surface ambiguity is transformed into ultimate, if fleeting, comprehension: comprehension of the bewitching nuances of sex and bewildering assaults of culture. Undoubtedly, it is to his lyrical mastery that his prestigious colleagues now pay tribute. Yet, there may be something else. As various, as distinct, as rewarding as each of their expressions are, there can still be heard in their individual interpretations the distant echo of Cohen's own voice, for it is his singing voice as well as his writing pen that has spawned these songs. It is a voice raked by the claws of Cupid, a voice rubbed raw by the philosopher's stone. A voice marinated in kirschwasser, sulfur, deer musk and snow; bandaged with sackcloth from a ruined monastery; warmed by the embers left down near the river after the gypsies have gone. It is a penitent's voice, a rabbinical voice, a crust of unleavened vocal toasts -- spread with smoke and subversive wit. He has a voice like a carpet in an old hotel, like a bad itch on the hunchback of love. It is a voice meant for pronouncing the names of women -- and cataloging their sometimes hazardous charms. Nobody can say the word "naked" as nakedly as Cohen. He makes us see the markings where the pantyhose have been. Finally, the actual persona of their creator may be said to haunt these songs, although details of his private lifestyle can be only surmised. A decade ago, a teacher who called himself Shree Bhagwan Rajneesh came up with the name "Zorba the Buddha" to describe the ideal modern man: A contemplative man who maintains a strict devotional bond with cosmic energies, yet is completely at home in the physical realm. Such a man knows the value of the dharma and the value of the deutschmark, knows how much to tip a waiter in a Paris nightclub and how many times to bow in a Kyoto shrine, a man who can do business when business is necessary, allow his mind to enter a pine cone, or dance in wild abandon if moved by the tune. Refusing to shun beauty, this Zorba the Buddha finds in ripe pleasures not a contradiction but an affirmation of the spiritual self. Doesn't he sound a lot like Leonard Cohen? We have been led to picture Cohen spending his mornings meditating in Armani suits, his afternoons wrestling the muse, his evenings sitting in cafes were he eats, drinks and speaks soulfully but flirtatiously with the pretty larks of the street. Quite possibly this is a distorted portrait. The apocryphal, however, has a special kind of truth. It doesn't really matter. What matters here is that after thirty years, L. Cohen is holding court in the lobby of the whirlwind, and that giants have gathered to pay him homage. To him -- and to us -- they bring the offerings they have hammered from his iron, his lead, his nitrogen, his gold.
Tom Robbins
So long as we do not know definitely what we want, our forces will be scattered, and so long as our forces are scattered, we will accomplish but little, or fail entirely. When we know what we want, however, and proceed to work for it with all the power and ability that is in us, we may rest assured that we will get it. When we direct the power of thinking, the power of will, the power of mental action, the power of desire, the power of ambition, in fact, all the power we possess on the one thing we want, on the one goal we desire to reach, it is not difficult to understand why success in a greater and greater measure must be realized.
Christian D. Larson
When efforts that are wisely executed, the situation and condition don't affect the performance.
Ashish Patel
extraordinary results are directly determined by how narrow you can make your focus.
Gary Keller (The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth About Extraordinary Results)
Its all about perception, that is how you look at. Your own thoughts and outlook defines whether it is good or bad. And your definition determines your response.
Stella Payton
Apathy is giving up when we need to get up.
Craig D. Lounsbrough
If you stop focusing on all the reasons why you can’t do it, you just may surprise yourself to see what you can do.
Frank Sonnenberg (BookSmart: Hundreds of real-world lessons for success and happiness)
When you believe, the impossible becomes possible. What you believe will become what is true. Your optimism today will determine your level of success tomorrow. Don’t look at your challenges; look up and look out into the future. Don’t focus on your circumstances. Focus on the right beliefs that will help you build your success.
Jon Gordon (The Carpenter: A Story About the Greatest Success Strategies of All (Jon Gordon))
The Four Keys of Great Managers: 1. "When selecting someone, they select for talent ... not simply experience, intelligence or determination." 2. "When setting expectations, they define the right outcomes ... not the right steps." 3. "When motivating someone, they focus on strengths ... not on weaknesses." 4. "When developing someone, they help him find the right fit ... not simply the next rung on the ladder.
Marcus Buckingham
The messages of a prophet...affect the decisions of kings. The decisions of kings determine not just the course of nations but also the life and death of individuals in those countries. If we become so enamored with our own little world that we disregard the nations, we are no better than those who focus on nations and ruthlessly disregard human life.
Mesu Andrews (Love in a Broken Vessel (Treasure of His Love))
Although she had resisted this knowledge all her life, had lived determinedly in the future focused there by ambition, she understood at last that this was the real condition of humanity: The dance of life occurred not yesterday or tomorrow, but only here at the still point that was the present. This truth is simmple, sel-evident, but difficult to accept, for we sentimentalize the past and wallow in it, while we endure the moment and in every waking hour dream of the future.
Dean Koontz (The Taking)
As a fallen warrior, you feel like nothing has been going your way lately, and that you do not have any fight left. Do not dwell on the past or what is thrown at you; instead, use it as fuel to be a powerful fighter! As you become a powerful fighter, learn how to balance and focus on your inner peace. Keep a steady, positive mind and remind yourself that nobody has the power or authority to bring you down.
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
There are many paths to mastery, and if you are persistent you will certainly find one that suits you. But a key component in the process is determining your mental and psychological strengths and working with them. To rise to the level of mastery requires many hours of dedicated focus and practice. You cannot get there if your work brings you no joy and you are constantly struggling to overcome your own weaknesses. You must look deep within and come to an understanding of these particular strengths and weaknesses you possess, being as realistic as possible. Knowing your strengths you can lean on them with utmost intensity. Once you start in this direction, you will gain momentum. You will not be burdened by conventions and you will not be slowed down by having to deal with skills that go against your inclinations and strengths. In this way, your creative and intuitive powers will be naturally awakened.
Robert Greene
Slowly but surely, the darkness revealed light; and as the dim light shine brighter, I was mentally, physically, and emotionally prepared to battle the raging storms and the unfair, distasteful barriers. When my bags were too heavy and weighing me down, the darkness taught me when to put them down and focus on me. It taught me when to let go and know I could not change the situation. Most importantly, the darkness taught me that I could work through my trying times and make the best of what I was given.
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
There is evidence that the honoree [Leonard Cohen] might be privy to the secret of the universe, which, in case you're wondering, is simply this: Everything is connected. Everything. Many, if not most, of the links are difficult to determine. The instrument, the apparatus, the focused ray that can uncover and illuminate those connections is language.
Tom Robbins (Wild Ducks Flying Backward)
Conviction is having the mindset to never doubt your self-understanding
Gino Norris (Stress Diary Journal)
With focus and consistency you can change your habits. By changing your habits, you reprogram the behaviors that control most of your life and ultimately determine your success.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Maximize Your Potential: Grow Your Expertise, Take Bold Risks & Build an Incredible Career (99U Book 2))
Stay strong. Focus on the ultimate goal.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind)
Always remember, your focus determines your reality.
Joshua P. Warren (Use The Force: A Jedi's Guide to the Law of Attraction)
We focus on the reasons why we ‘can’t’ at the expense of the far greater reasons why we ‘can’.
Craig D. Lounsbrough
Boy band fangirls are a species that are more focused, determined and powerful in large numbers than just about any other group of people I can think of
Goldy Moldavsky (Kill the Boy Band)
The obstacles were intended to be a distraction from the goal. You must keep a persistence focus to realise the goal.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind)
To be a highflier and a name to conjure with, you must decide your dimension, plan your path, master the moment, focus on the future, determine your degree, push your persistence and lead your life.
Ifeanyi Enoch Onuoha
Determined and focused people tend to work harder and get tasks done more promptly. They stay married longer and have deeper networks of friends. They often have higher-paying jobs. But this questionnaire is not intended to test personal organization. Rather, it’s designed to measure a personality
Charles Duhigg (Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive)
She decided that she wasn't going to focus on always trying to please others. She felt determined to take the time to get to know, and love, herself. And she hoped that the warm glow of appreciation she always looked for might actually come from within.
Phaedra Patrick (The Library of Lost and Found)
Justice is the gateway to peace. Education is the gateway to equality. Patience is the gateway to tolerance. Compassion is the gateway to mercy. Certainty is the gateway to assurance. Hope is the gateway to courage. Contentment is the gateway to happiness. Integrity is the gateway to virtue. Need is the gateway to want. Laughter is the gateway to health. Pleasure is the gateway to enjoyment. Love is the gateway to joy. Life is the gateway to death. Reality is the gateway to truth. Harmony is the gateway to order. Time is the gateway to eternity. Intelligence is the gateway to wisdom. Focus is the gateway to determination. Insight is the gateway to understanding. Knowledge is the gateway to enlightenment.
Matshona Dhliwayo
Warm breath brushed over my ear as he leaned in. “Am I perfect, drādah?” I choked. Ducking away from him, I rushed back to the worktable. Focusing with single-minded determination, I opened the book to its table of contents and tried desperately to remember what I was supposed to be researching. Zylas’s quiet, husky laugh rolled through the room.
Annette Marie (Hunting Fiends for the Ill-Equipped (The Guild Codex: Demonized, #3))
As long as you stay determined, you will stay focused and you will succeed
Carol Bell
Relentlessness doesn’t mean charging into the fray headfirst, swinging and flailing your arms every which way. It’s focused, determined action. Again and again and again.
Gary John Bishop (Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life (Unfu*k Yourself series))
Your thoughts are like a magnet; they determine what you attract. So if you want to live in abundance, stop focusing on what you lack!
Mandy Hale (The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass)
Nothing moves unless you are determined to push
Nicky Verd
Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you. —Carl Sandburg
Cassie Holmes (Happier Hour: How to Beat Distraction, Expand Your Time, and Focus on What Matters Most)
Checking items off a to-do list doesn’t determine progress; focusing on your priorities is what counts.
Frank Sonnenberg (BookSmart: Hundreds of real-world lessons for success and happiness)
Successful continual learning means maintaining a balance and variety of success-oriented attributes, the most prominent being awareness, confidence, persistence, determination, courage, and focus. But curiosity, ingenuity, and creativity may be even more important as it is these traits that fuel the desire to continue to question and challenge the status quo.
Lorii Myers (No Excuses, The Fit Mind-Fit Body Strategy Book (3 Off the Tee, #3))
When I let go of everyone’s problems and focused on me, I gained a lot of knowledge about myself I didn’t know. I finally realized the definition of peace, joy, love, and happiness. When I started to give more to myself, I learned to love myself wholeheartedly. Most importantly, I learned that nobody would love me more than I love myself. I am the only person who will love hard on me. Therefore, I learned how to live in a self-fulfilling mode, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
Shawn, are you hurt?” With a gasp, he shoved Rutledge away and focused his gaze on Emily. “What? No!” A furrow appeared between her small brows. “I thought you were hurt. You were making noises.” His face warm, Shawn determinedly avoiding looking at Rutledge. “I wasn’t making noises.” “You were!” Bee said, looking puzzled. “Lying is bad! You said so!” Emily nodded. “And why did Mr. Rutledge put his tongue in your mouth?” “Because your brother wanted something to suck on,” Rutledge commented, starting the engine.
Alessandra Hazard (Just a Bit Twisted (Straight Guys #1))
Determined eyes see less sleep; a focused mind has less time for idleness. Hearts filled with tenacity don’t just give up. When you are at the battlefield, you do all things with a different energy!
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
Why are some countries able, despite their very real and serious problems, to press ahead along the road to reconciliation, recovery, and redevelopment while others cannot? These are critical questions for Africa, and their answers are complex and not always clear. Leadership is crucial, of course. Kagame was a strong leader–decisive, focused, disciplined, and honest–and he remains so today. I believe that sometimes people's characters are molded by their environment. Angola, like Liberia, like Sierra Leone, is resource-rich, a natural blessing that sometimes has the sad effect of diminishing the human drive for self-sufficiency, the ability and determination to maximize that which one has. Kagame had nothing. He grew up in a refugee camp, equipped with only his own strength of will and determination to create a better life for himself and his countrymen.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (This Child Will Be Great: Memoir of a Remarkable Life by Africa's First Woman President)
Perhaps you have been wondering about how you will win the tournaments of life. This is an important moment of your life. Just know where your goals are. Dress in the jersey of action and enter the game of vision! Work with your talents, skills, and tactics and with determination! Don’t commit any foul; don’t put yourself on an offside position. Be at the right place at the right time. Attack your failures and defend your goals; look up and watch the time because the whistle may blow at any time. Don’t waste the chances you get! Target the goals and with winning in focus, you will be there!
Israelmore Ayivor
I carried this problem around in my head basically the whole time. I would wake up with it first thing in the morning, I would be thinking about it all day, and I would be thinking about it when I went to sleep. Without distraction I would have the same thing going round and round in my mind. (Recalling the degree of focus and determination that eventually yielded the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem.)
Andrew John Wiles
I noticed several things about the drummer all at once. He was focused on the task at hand, keeping perfect rhythm. Instead of a swirl of transparent colors around his torso, there was a small, concentrated starburst of bright red at his sternum. But otherwise his aura was blank. Huh. That was strange. But before I could contemplate it too much, my eyes landed on his face. Wowza. He was smokin' hot. As in H-O-T-T hot. I'd never understood until that moment why girls insisted on adding an extra T. This guy was extra-T worthy. I examined the drummer, determined to find a flaw. Brown hair. An interesting haircut: short around the sides and back, but longer on top, hanging loose and angling across his forehead. His eyes were narrow and his eyebrows were a bit thick and...Oh, who was I kidding? I could pick him apart, but even the shifty slant of his eyes made him more alluring to me.
Wendy Higgins (Sweet Evil (Sweet, #1))
Sometimes the only way I can determine whether I’m trying to control someone else or whether I’m simply expressing my feelings is by noticing how many times I say the same thing. If I mention something that is on my mind and then let it go no matter what response I get, I am speaking sincerely. If I repeatedly make similar suggestions or ask prodding questions again and again, I am probably trying to control. If I am satisfied only when the other person responds in a way I consider desirable—agrees with what I’ve said or takes my advice—then I know I’ve lost my focus.
Al-Anon Family Groups (Courage to Change-One Day at a Time in Al‑Anon II: Part 1)
The history professor Nelson Lichtenstein told me, “What you can’t measure, you can’t reward,” and that may be why executives are so focused on work hours. For decades, the corporate world has been consumed with metrics. Managers love tangible measures by which they can determine success or failure. Work hours is one of the easiest ways to measure employee performance, but total hours worked is a meaningless statistic.
Celeste Headlee (Do Nothing: How to Break Away from Overworking, Overdoing, and Underliving)
People will try to frustrate you in life. But you have to decide to stay focus and determined to realize your goal.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
Through sheer volume of passing days you will travel a great distance in your lifetime. Imagine where you might stand if your footsteps steered toward a single goal.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year)
For his book Willpower, psychologist Roy Baumeister analyzed findings from hundreds of experiments to determine why some people can retain focus for hours, while others can’t.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Manage Your Day-To-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind)
Step into the future with focus knowing that the only way to kill your dream is trying to find another.
Moffat Machingura (Life Capsules)
Never give up on the possibilities or accept what is when you can see it for what it could be.
A.J. Darkholme (Rise of the Morningstar (The Morningstar Chronicles, #1))
Have faith in your abilities and stay committed to your goals.
Lailah Gifty Akita
Every new day, we must refocus, to see the beauty of the moment
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
With persistent focus, commitment and enthusiasm, your dream will be reality.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
Focus on the dreams, there may be distractions but still, focus.
The benefits often outweigh the suffering. Never concentrate on the pain, focus on the reward.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
If in life there is one lesson to be learned, be it this, with imagination, focus and determination, anything can be.
Pepperkayn (Candyfloss Girl)
I can’t obsess over what got me in this situation. I have to focus on how to get out of it.
K. Weikel
Maintain a persistent focus of what you want. You will attract the divine force to bring it into existence.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
Curiosity fueled our determination to keep questioning.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
Where you are going to matters more than what you are going through.
Moffat Machingura (Life Capsules for Success: 50 Energy Capsules to Speed Boost You Towards Your Success, Now!)
A lot of hard work comes together to form joy
Vineet Raj Kapoor
Don’t get discouraged or compare yourself to people. Focus on improving yourself each day, slowly but surely.
Francis Shenstone (The Explorer's Mindset: Unlock Health Happiness and Success the Fun Way)
There is no limit to what you can do,when you focus on your strength.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
When we’re focused and determined enough, we are capable of so much.
Amy Purdy (On My Own Two Feet: The Journey from Losing My Legs to Learning the Dance of Life)
Psychologists call this phenomenon the contrast effect. Simply put, how you see anything depends on your reference point. One way or the other, your focus will determine your reality.
Mark Batterson (If: Trading Your If Only Regrets for God's What If Possibilities)
We don't see the world as it is; we see the world as we are...if someone has a critical eye, they will always find something to be critical about. And if they have a grateful eye, they will find something to celebrate even in the worst of circumstances...Having a "good eye" in life changes how you see yourself and everything around you... your focus determines your reality.
Mark Batterson (A Trip around the Sun: Turning Your Everyday Life into the Adventure of a Lifetime)
Because the “traumatic” view of early years so controls psychological theory of personality and its development, the focus of our rememberings and the language of our personal story telling have already been infiltrated by the toxins of these theories. Our lives may be determined less by our childhood than by the way we have learned to imagine our childhoods. We are, this book shall maintain, less damaged by the traumas of childhood than by the traumatic way we remember childhood as a time of unnecessary and externally caused calamities that wrongly shaped us.
James Hillman (The Soul's Code: In Search of Character and Calling)
Certainly, whom you marry on that day determines how you live the rest of your life. So forget about what you’ll wear and how you’ll have your hair done, focus on finding a man who has your back.
Veena Venugopal (The Mother-in-Law: The Other Woman in Your Marriage)
Another way to determine the direction of the general market is to focus on how the leading stocks are performing. If the stocks that have been leading the bull market start breaking down, that is a major sign the market has topped. Another important factor to watch is the Federal Reserve discount rate. Usually, after the Fed raises the rate two or three times, the market runs into trouble.
Jack D. Schwager (Market Wizards: Interviews with Top Traders)
The religious faith that we are born into is largely determined by the region where we live and the ethnic background of our family. In my case, I was born to an African American family in the southern region of the United States. Like most families of our description, we embraced the Baptist religious tradition. Although I went from Baptist to Buddhist, I’ve honored my family’s heritage and cherish the similarities between these two paths. Baptist teachings encouraged me to work toward attaining admission into a heavenly paradise, while Buddhism inspires me to attain the enduring and enlightened life condition of Buddhahood. Although the goals of these two spiritual paths may sound somewhat different, both focus on creating a state of indestructible, eternal happiness. To me, that is an important similarity. I’ve met people from all over the world, from many cultures and faiths, and I believe that all religious traditions share the same basic aspirations at their core—to experience everlasting joy by aligning with the positive forces of the universe. We may describe this ultimate reality as Jehovah, God, Allah, Jesus, Hashem, Tao, Brahma, the Creator, the Mystic Law, the Universe, the Force, Buddha nature, Christ consciousness, or any number of other expressions.
Tina Turner (Happiness Becomes You: A Guide to Changing Your Life for Good)
Stand tall and face YOUR truth. Speak boldly and be confident in what you say. Don't just dream, but take the steps to get where you want to be. Stay motivated, determined, and focused because YOU are worth it! Giving up is NOT an option. Keep your eyes on what matters and what's truly important.
Stephanie Lahart
Our true nature is reflected in how we respond when someone around us succeeds. We have two choices: to laud them with praise or to load them with criticism. The focus of our heart determines our response.
Jeremy Gove (Let's Be Honest: Living a Life of Radical, Biblical Integrity)
I felt there was a lot I needed to teach her. I wanted to give her an early grounding in the basics of arithmetic and reading, but even more important, I wanted to get across the idea that the world was a dangerous place and life was unpredictable and you had to be smart, focused, and determined to make it through. You had to be willing to work hard and persevere in the face of misfortune. A lot of people, even those born with brains and beauty, didn't have what it took to knuckle down and get the thing done.
Jeannette Walls (Half Broke Horses)
He stares at me, his eyes focused and brow furrowed as he absorbs what I said, his lips pouting. It’s his Editing Expression, and when it clears, he shakes his head and says, “No.” I laugh, surprised. “What?” He straightens, steps in close. “I said, no.” “Charlie. What’s that even mean?” “It means,” he says, eyes glinting, “you’ll have to do better than that.” I smile despite myself, hope thrashing around in my belly like a very determined baby bird with a broken wing. “I’ll expect notes by Friday,” he says.
Emily Henry (Book Lovers)
Perception is of course intimately tied to preconception. I have, as is true for each of us, a pair of cultural eyeglasses that will determine to greater or lesser degree what will be in focus, what will be a blur, what gives me a headache, and what I cannot see. I was raised a Christian—the mythology resides deep in my bones—and I know the story of Jesus nearly as well as I know my own. Until my late teens I couldn’t see some of the darker acts perpetrated in the name of Christ. I still feel a twinge each time I say, “I am not a Christian,” a slight apprehension that I may have gone too far. Sometimes I look up, a small part of my upbringing still telling me that my blasphemy will call forth a bolt of lightning from the sky.
Derrick Jensen (A Language Older Than Words)
I’m cancer-free today! Cancer cannot keep up with my goals, enthusiasm, focus, passion, and determination. I will run you out of my body by not thinking about you, I will focus on what it will be like when you are gone.
Gregory Q. Cheek (Three Points of Contact: A Motivational Speaker's Inspirational Methods of Success from Homeless Teen Through Cancer.)
A family meeting is a procedure, and it requires no less skill than performing an operation.” One basic mistake is conceptual. To most doctors, the primary purpose of a discussion about terminal illness is to determine what people want—whether they want chemo or not, whether they want to be resuscitated or not, whether they want hospice or not. We focus on laying out the facts and the options. But that’s a mistake, Block said. “A large part of the task is helping people negotiate the overwhelming anxiety—anxiety about death, anxiety about suffering, anxiety about loved ones, anxiety about finances,” she explained. “There are many worries and real terrors.” No
Atul Gawande (Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End)
Specifically, it’s our routine (or lack thereof), our capacity to work proactively rather than reactively, and our ability to systematically optimize our work habits over time that determine our ability to make ideas happen.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Manage Your Day-To-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind)
A political movement that focuses on class and ignores the specific ways in which race determines financial health and well-being for people of color in this country will be a movement that maintains white supremacy, because it will not be able to identify or address the specific, race-based systems that are the main causes of inequality for people of color. Health care discrimination, job discrimination, the school-to-prison pipeline, educational bias, mass incarceration, police brutality, community trauma—none of these issues are addressed in a class-only approach. A class-only approach will lift only poor whites out of poverty and will therefore maintain white supremacy.
Ijeoma Oluo (Mediocre: The Dangerous Legacy of White Male America)
You must always focus on and pursue the good, but when that darkness surges up from within, you need to know how to handle it, use it, and release it wisely, not just deny its presence or acceptability as you suppress it within you.
A.J. Darkholme (Rise of the Morningstar (The Morningstar Chronicles, #1))
If you ask a negative, unanswerable question, you will get a negative, impractical answer. The question you ask determines the focus of your thinking, your focus determines your attitude, and your attitude determines your ability to take action.
Dorothy Leeds (The 7 Powers of Questions: Secrets to Successful Communication in Life and at Work)
If you plan for failure, then you are expecting to fail. If you plan for success, you’ll be successful. Once you start making a ‘Plan B’, you distract from ‘Plan A’, and the moment you start believing there are other options, you start settling for less.
A.J. Darkholme (Rise of the Morningstar (The Morningstar Chronicles, #1))
The Craftsman Approach to Tool Selection: Identify the core factors that determine success and happiness in your professional and personal life. Adopt a tool only if its positive impacts on these factors substantially outweigh its negative impacts. Notice
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
What these motivational teachers are saying (as I’ve realized after a long time) is that if something is really important to you, you will do everything necessary to ensure that it comes into your life. This teaching, if applied within the current framework, means that you’ll work on your inner state, no matter what it takes. You’ll focus exclusively on how you feel on the inside to the exclusion of everything else. You’ll not allow yourself to be bogged down by fear or negative thoughts. You’ll be persistent in your practice and overcoming your past conditioning. You’ll be determined. But notice that all our determination is channeled and focused on letting go of negative and fear thoughts. They are not focused upon outer directed actions to get what we want.
Richard Dotts (Come and Sit with Me: How to Desire Nothing and Manifest Everything)
If a disciple is old, a master should be mature. If a disciple is young, a master should be accessible. If a disciple is brave, a master should be fearless. If a disciple is shrewd, a master should be wise. If a disciple is strong, a master should be powerful. If a disciple is learned, a master should be enlightened. If a disciple is contented, a master should be joyful. If a disciple is faithful, a master should be devoted. If a disciple is tolerant, a master should be peaceful. If a disciple is intro inspective, a master should be self-aware. If a disciple is focused, a master should be determined. If a disciple is exceptional, a master should be perfect.
Matshona Dhliwayo
The great prize in dating is Christ-centered clarity. Intimacy is safest in the context of marriage and marriage is safest in the context of clarity. The purpose of our dating is to determine whether the two of us should get married, so we should focus our effort there.
Marshall Segal (Not Yet Married: The Pursuit of Joy in Singleness and Dating)
PROLOGUE Have you ever had the feeling that someone was playing with your destiny? If so, this book is for you! Destiny is certainly something people like to talk about. Wherever we go, we hear it mentioned in conversations or proverbs that seek to lay bare its mysteries. If we analyse people’s attitude towards destiny a little, we find straight away that at one extreme are those who believe that everything in life is planned by a higher power and that therefore things always happen for a reason, even though our limited human understanding cannot comprehend why. In this perspective, everything is preordained, regardless of what we do or don’t do. At the other extreme we find the I can do it! believers. These focus on themselves: anything is possible if done with conviction, as part of the plan that they have drawn up themselves as the architects of their own Destiny. We can safely say that everything happens for a reason. Whether it’s because of decisions we take or simply because circumstances determine it, there is always more causation than coincidence in life. But sometimes such strange things happen! The most insignificant occurrence or decision can give way to the most unexpected futures. Indeed, such twists of fate may well be the reason why you are reading my book now. Do you have any idea of the number of events, circumstances and decisions that had to conspire for me to write this and for you to be reading it now? There are so many coincidences that had to come together that it might almost seem a whim of destiny that today we are connected by these words. One infinitesimal change in that bunch of circumstances and everything would have been quite different… All these fascinating issues are to be found in Equinox. I enjoy fantasy literature very much because of all the reality it involves. As a reader you’re relaxed, your defences down, trying to enjoy an loosely-structured adventure. This is the ideal space for you to allow yourself to be carried away to an imaginary world that, paradoxically, will leave you reflecting on real life questions that have little to do with fiction, although we may not understand them completely.
Gonzalo Guma (Equinoccio. Susurros del destino)
You need to be focused, Reaylin. You must determine your objective. Know your purpose. Recognize your talents and capitalize on them. If you live your life for the sole purpose of seeking the approval of others, you will live no life at all. You will indubitably fail, for if that person cannot appreciate you for who you are, then he or she will never truly appreciate you at all. You will always be trying to prove yourself, and it will never be enough.
Kel Kade (Reign of Madness (King's Dark Tidings, #2))
If you wish to examine me to determine the sex of the child, you may do so.” Her chin lifted. “But as you wish me to accept yourself, for your predatory nature, you must accept me as I am. My heart and soul may be Carpathian, but my mind is human. I will not be put on a shelf somewhere because you or my husband deems it necessary. Human women moved out of the dark ages a long time ago. My place is with Mikhail, and I must make my own decisions. If you feel the need to add your protection to Mikhail’s I will be most grateful.” There was a long silence, and the red glow faded slowly from the slashing silver eyes. Gregori shook his head slowly, with infinite weariness. This woman was so different from his kind. Reckless. Compassionate. Unaware of every taboo she broke. His hand went to her stomach, fingers splayed. He focused, aimed, sent himself out of his body. His breath caught in his throat, and his heart seemed to melt. Deliberately he moved to surround the tiny being, merging his light and will for a heartbeat of time. He was taking no chances. This was his lifemate; he would ensure it with every means at his disposal, from the blood bonding to mental sharing. No one was as powerful as he. This female child was his and his alone. He could hang on until she came of age. “We did it, didn’t we?” Raven said softly, bringing Gregori back to his body. “She’s a girl.” Gregori stepped away from Raven, holding on to his composure with his great strength of will.
Christine Feehan (Dark Desire (Dark, #2))
When our happiness is dependent on what happens to us and when our self-focus determines our daily mood, our joy will necessarily be limited to whatever good thing happens to us. But when we learn to truly delight in the welfare of others and rejoice in what God is doing in their lives, the potential for increased joy skyrockets.
Gary L. Thomas (Authentic Faith: The Power of a Fire-Tested Life)
But in dozens and dozens of studies, Latham and Locke found that setting goals increased performance and productivity 11 to 25 percent.5 That’s quite a boost. If an eight-hour day is our baseline, that’s like getting two extra hours of work simply by building a mental frame (aka a goal) around the activity. But not every goal is the same. “We found that if you want the largest increase in motivation and productivity,” says Latham, “then big goals lead to the best outcomes. Big goals significantly outperform small goals, medium-sized goals, and vague goals. It comes down to attention and persistence—which are two of the most important factors in determining performance. Big goals help focus attention, and they make us more persistent. The result is we’re much more effective when we work, and much more willing to get up and try again when we fail.
Peter H. Diamandis (Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World (Exponential Technology Series))
The Warrior-Sage will get focused, turn the power on and concentrate on the job at hand. And by doing this he is an effective role model for others around him. One way or another, he will get the job done. And if he finds himself in a situation that he is unable to change he will simply shrug his shoulders, go inside himself and wait it out.
Karl Wiggins (Wrong Planet - Searching for your Tribe)
For example, during studies focused on interpreting meaning it was found that continued focus on the meaning in words (which uses visual, auditory, and feeling senses) enhances the future ability to determine meaning irrespective of the medium conveying it. However if the focus is shifted to classifying letters by shape (which restricts the sensory modality to the visual only), the ability to determine meaning decreases. In other words, focus on form inhibits the ability to determine the meanings that underlie form.
Stephen Harrod Buhner (Plant Intelligence and the Imaginal Realm: Beyond the Doors of Perception into the Dreaming of Earth)
... you will transform your ability to produce consistent and spectacular entrepreneurial results. You must create a foundational schedule that adds structure and intentionality to your days and weeks. A foundational schedule is a pre-determined, recurring schedule that is made up of focused time blocks dedicated to your highest priority activities.
Hal Elrod (The Miracle Morning for Entrepreneurs: Elevate Yourself to Elevate Your business)
You know when I first met you, you scared the shit out of me.” She pulls a “whoops” face and glances at the minister, who sighs because he knows us well enough to know this is just how we talk. Then she returns her focus to me and clears her throat. “You were so intense and determined to get to know me and I couldn’t understand why you would want to, for a lot of reasons, reasons that you know about because you know me better than anyone.” Her voice wobbles a little and she lets go of the paper and wipes her sweaty palm on her jacket. “But eventually you sort of wore on me.” Her lips quirk and it makes me grin. “You became my light in my dark life and you made me feel so loved that I’d forget how to breathe. You were the only one who could make me laugh, smile, have fun, not give up. You were always there for me and somehow, through the crazy, intense years, you fought your way into my soul and ended up becoming my everything. You became my lifeline, the one person I could rely on no matter what, whether I was upset or pushing you away—you were always there for me. And I love you for it and for the amazing person that you are, for writing me songs and tattooing them on your skin, for wearing a ridiculous O ring on your finger,” she says, trying to smile but I can tell she’s getting overwhelmed by her emotions. “And for loving me enough not to let me give up, not matter how hard I fought.
Jessica Sorensen (The Ever After of Ella and Micha (The Secret, #4))
The essence of the focusing illusion is WYSIATI, giving too much weight to the climate, too little to all the other determinants of well-being.
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
Wake up! And lay claim to your dream with sacred determination flashing in your eyes, never to play small for the rest of your life.
Curtis Tyrone Jones (Mirrors Of The Sun: Finding Reflections Of Light In The Shittiness Of Life)
A person's actions will ALWAYS tell you what their priorities are. People spend their time, money, and energy on what's important to them.
Germany Kent
The capacities that develop in the earliest years may be harder to measure on tests of kindergarten readiness than abilities like number and letter recognition, but they are precisely the skills, closely related to executive functions, that researchers have recently determined to be so valuable in kindergarten and beyond: the ability to focus on a single activity for an extended period, the ability to understand and follow directions, the ability to cope with disappointment and frustration, the ability to interact capably with other students.
Paul Tough (Helping Children Succeed: What Works and Why)
The second key maneuver, which flowed naturally from the first, was to redefine racism itself. Confronted with civil rights headlines depicting unflattering portrayals of KKK rallies and jackbooted sheriffs, white authority transformed those damning images of white supremacy into the sole definition of racism. This simple but wickedly brilliant conceptual and linguistic shift served multiple purposes. First and foremost, it was conscience soothing. The whittling down of racism to sheet-wearing goons allowed a cloud of racial innocence to cover many whites who, although 'resentful of black progress' and determined to ensure that racial inequality remained untouched, could see and project themselves as the 'kind of upstanding white citizen(s)' who were 'positively outraged at the tactics of the Ku Klux Klan". The focus on the Klan also helped to designate racism as an individual aberration rather than something systemic, institutional and pervasive.
Carol Anderson (White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide)
Not every type of love satisfies, and not every type of love is right. The world would tell you to love yourself like no tomorrow. But if you only focus on making yourself happy and following your own heart, it will lead to roads of disaster in the long run. Remember that happiness is not only a reflection of what happens to you outwardly but who you are inwardly. How you react to the circumstances of life will determine how good or how bad your life may be. But the circumstances of life and the way we’re treated still matters. For these conditions augment our overall state of happiness.
Adam Houge (NOT A BOOK: The 7 Habits That Will Change Your Life Forever)
What I’m saying is this: Given that I don’t have a choice, given that death is an unavoidable and final reality, I’m finding ways, not just to accept it, but to use it to give my life meaning. The finality of death is giving my life motivation and focus. It’s driving me to accomplish things that I’d put off indefinitely without it. Death has turned me from a happy-go-lucky slacker chick with some vague creative goals but no real plans for reaching them, into an ambitious, determined woman with a clear sense of what she wants to do with her life and what she needs to do to make it happen.
Greta Christina (Comforting Thoughts About Death That Have Nothing to Do with God)
Another thing to understand is the notion of choice architecture, which means that the environment in which we make decisions tends to have a lot to do with what our final decisions are. So if you’re in line at the buffet, the way the food is organized—whether the fresh fruit and salad is easily accessible or tucked in the back behind more tempting options—will determine what you end up eating.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Manage Your Day-To-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind)
Some Christians go to great trouble studying Satan's ways so they can identify his deceptions, but I don't do that. I'm determined not to focus on Satan—he is defeated. Christ, who guides me and implements His will through me, is the victor. The only way Satan can affect God's work through me is when I believe Satan and doubt God. Satan will try to deceive you, but he cannot ultimately thwart God's purposes.
Henry T. Blackaby (Experiencing God)
If you care about peace, then you should care about justice. If you care about justice, then you should care about truth. If you care about truth, then you should care about integrity. If you care about integrity, then you should care about virtue. If you care about joy, then you should care about happiness. If you care about happiness, then you should care about fufilment. If you care about fufilment,then you should care about needs contentment. If you care about contentment, then you should care about patience. If you care about strength, then you should care about courage. If you care about courage, then you should care about hope. If you care about hope, then you should care about faith. If you care about faith, then you should care about love. If you care about wealth, then you should care about excellence. If you care about excellence, then you should care about hardwork. If you care about hardwork, then you should care about determination. If you care about determination, then you should care about focus. If you care about education, then you should care about schools. If you care about schools, then you should care about students. If you care about students, then you should care about teachers. If you care about teachers, then you should care about salaries. If you care about people, then you should care about communities. If you care about communities, then you should care about cities. If you care about cities, then you should care about provinces. If you care about provinces, then you should care about nations. If you care about yourself, then you should care about life. If you care about life, then you should care about health. If you care about health, then you should care about excersise. If you care about excersise, then you should care about nutrition. If you care about food, then you should care about animals. If you care about animals, then you should care about earth. If you care about earth, then you should care about nature. If you care about nature, then you should care about water. If you care about yesturday, then you should care about today. If you care about today, then you should care about now. If you care about now, then you should care about tomorrow. If you care about tomorrow, then you should care about forever.
Matshona Dhliwayo
The early part, passionate love, is dopaminergic—exhilarating, idealized, curious, future looking. The later part, companionate love, is H&N focused—satisfying, peaceful, and experienced through bodily senses and emotions.
Daniel Z. Lieberman (The Molecule of More: How a Single Chemical in Your Brain Drives Love, Sex, and Creativity―and Will Determine the Fate of the Human Race)
As I said, I decided to try an experiment: Right now, from within my perception of my current circumstances, and from within the starkness of this realization, I determined to conceive and focus on what I would tell—and what I have told—my younger self, and live with the consequences. Here is what I wrote down: Immediately disassociate from destructive people and forces, if not physically then ethically—and watch for the moment when you can do so physically. Use every means to improve your mental acuity. Every sacrifice of empty leisure or escapism for study, industry, and growth is a fee paid to personal freedom. Train the body. Grow physically strong. Reduce consumption. You will be strengthened throughout your being. Seek no one’s approval through humor, servility, or theatrics. Be alone if necessary. But do not compromise with low company. At the earliest possible point, learn meditation (i.e., Transcendental Meditation), yoga, and martial arts (select good teachers). Go your own way—literally. Walk/bike and don’t ride the bus or in a car, except when necessary. Do so in all weather: rain, snow, etc. Be independent physically and you will be independent in other ways. Learn-study-rehearse. Pursue excellence. Or else leave something alone. Go to the limit in something or do not approach it. Starve yourself of the compulsion to derive your sense of wellbeing from your perception of what others think of you. Do this as an alcoholic avoids a drink or an addict a needle. It will be agonizing at first, since you may have no other perception of self; but this, finally, is the sole means of experiencing Self. Does this kind of advice, practicable at any time of life, really alter or reselect the perceived past, and, with it, the future? I intend to find out. You
Mitch Horowitz (The Miracle Club: How Thoughts Become Reality)
I began looking for these four: Smart. It doesn’t mean high IQ (although that’s great), it means disposed toward learning. If there’s a best practice anywhere, adopt it. We want to turn as much as possible into a routine so we can focus on the few things that require human intelligence and creativity. A good interview question for this is: “Tell me about the last significant thing you learned about how to do your job better.” Or you might ask a candidate: “What’s something that you’ve automated? What’s a process you’ve had to tear down at a company?” Humble. I don’t mean meek or unambitious, I mean being humble in the way that Steph Curry is humble. If you’re humble, people want you to succeed. If you’re selfish, they want you to fail. It also gives you the capacity for self-awareness, so you can actually learn and be smart. Humility is foundational like that. It is also essential for the kind of collaboration we want at Slack. Hardworking. It does not mean long hours. You can go home and take care of your family, but when you’re here, you’re disciplined, professional, and focused. You should also be competitive, determined, resourceful, resilient, and gritty. Take this job as an opportunity to do the best work of your life. Collaborative. It’s not submissive, not deferential—in fact it’s kind of the opposite. In our culture, being collaborative means providing leadership from everywhere. I’m taking responsibility for the health of this meeting. If there’s a lack of trust, I’m going to address that. If the goals are unclear, I’m going to deal with that. We’re all interested in getting better and everyone should take responsibility for that. If everyone’s collaborative in that sense, the responsibility for team performance is shared. Collaborative people know that success is limited by the worst performers, so they are either going to elevate them or have a serious conversation. This one is easy to corroborate with references, and in an interview you can ask, “Tell me about a situation in your last company where something was substandard and you helped to fix it.
Ben Horowitz (What You Do Is Who You Are: How to Create Your Business Culture)
You are not what you have done, but what you have overcome. All the hardships, the mistakes, the rejections, the pain and all the times you questioned why have given birth to the wisdom and strength that will help you shine your light on the world, even in the darkest of hour. Failures and struggles keep you humble. Success and achievement keep you glowing, but only faith and determination keep you going. Stay focused and celebrate your efforts too, not just the outcomes.
John Geiger
Those whom God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. A shiver raced down Daphne’s spine, causing her to sway. In just a moment, she would belong to this man forever. Simon’s head turned slightly, his eyes darting to her face. Are you all right? his eyes asked. She nodded, a tiny little jog of her chin that only he could see. Something blazed in his eyes— could it be relief? I now pronounce you— Gregory sneezed for a fourth time, then a fifth and sixth, completely obliterating the archbishop’s “man and wife.” Daphne felt a horrifying bubble of mirth pushing up her throat. She pressed her lips together, determined to maintain an appropriately serious facade. Marriage, after all, was a solemn institution, and not one to be treating as a joke. She shot a glance at Simon, only to find that he was looking at her with a queer expression. His pale eyes were focused on her mouth, and the corners of his lips began to twitch. Daphne felt that bubble of mirth rising ever higher. You may kiss the bride. Simon grabbed her with almost desperate arms, his mouth crashing down on hers with a force that drew a collective gasp from the small assemblage of guests. And then both sets of lips— bride and groom— burst into laughter, even as they remained entwined. Violet Bridgerton later said it was the oddest kiss she’d ever been privileged to view. Gregory Bridgerton— when he finished sneezing— said it was disgusting. The archbishop, who was getting on in years, looked perplexed. But Hyacinth Bridgerton, who at ten should have known the least about kisses of anyone, just blinked thoughtfully, and said, “I think it’s nice. If they’re laughing now, they’ll probably be laughing forever.” She turned to her mother. “Isn’t that a good thing?” Violet took her youngest daughter’s hand and squeezed it. “Laughter is always a good thing, Hyacinth. And thank you for reminding us of that.
Julia Quinn (The Duke and I (Bridgertons, #1))
It’s time to stop blaming our surroundings and start taking responsibility. While no workplace is perfect, it turns out that our gravest challenges are a lot more primal and personal. Our individual practices ultimately determine what we do and how well we do it. Specifically, it’s our routine (or lack thereof), our capacity to work proactively rather than reactively, and our ability to systematically optimize our work habits over time that determine our ability to make ideas happen.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Manage Your Day-To-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind)
No one escapes the wounding of the soul. You, much like me may have many questions of a painful past and focus on that pain. Maybe you have sought love and affection only to be used and left empty inside. Even now you close yourself off determined never to be hurt again so no one will ever see the beauty that lies within. I want to tell you as a woman or man you are highly valued in the eyes of God. You are His Crowning jewel of all creation. You are the pearl. We are all pearls of great value.
Cecibel Contreras (Rainbows in the Dark)
The Words of an Angel As I sit in a world of darkness I look around to see no one The cold wind has filled my soul The rivers have poured inside my body And the weight of the waters holds me back from seeing the light of day What should I do? I feel helpless, Paralyzed in my own fears And lost with no directions or roads to take Suddenly, a felt a laser of energy bolt though my body I yelled, “I’m so tired of feeling this way, I need help” Suddenly, gold light appeared And a man stood before me You foolish man, You choose this path the moment you chose to give up and wallow in your sorrows I cannot help you You need to help yourself. There are no rivers in your soul holding you back from light of the world The strength lies within you Look in my eyes and tell me what you see The lost man looked into the angels eyes and said, I see a man who gets his strength from helping others He does not waste time focusing on useless matters If you dig deep enough my child You will find precious gift inside yourself Gifts you never knew you had Learn from others Then help yourself Once you helped yourself Go out and help the world around you Because many people feel as you do The angel suddenly disappeared The lost man was no longer lost He was determined to waste no time He was going to use his time to help others Just as the angel helped him The man got up He realized the only thing holding him down was himself The room was no longer dark The light of life had entered Dig deep in yourself and lift yourself The answer to your problems lies within Use your gifts For the greatest gift is the gift of giving.
Stacey Chillemi (Life's Missing Instruction Manual)
Two fundamental advantages of the little bets approach are highlighted in the research of Professor Saras Sarasvathy: that it enables us to focus on what we can afford to lose rather than make assumptions about how much we can expect to gain, and that it facilitates the development of means as we progress with an idea. Sarasvathy points to the value of what she calls the affordable loss principle. Seasoned entrepreneurs, she emphasizes, will tend to determine in advance what they are willing to lose, rather than calculating expected gains.
Peter Sims (Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries)
How do you know which one's the queen?' 'She's bigger than the others,' said Mel. 'That doesn't always help,' Petey said, 'I can't always find her.' 'Because she's not that much bigger," said Mel. 'You don't rely on her size as much as you try to use the way she moves. It's hard to describe. It's as if she walks in a more determined way' She pulled off her hat and smoothed her long, straight hair. 'She's got a big job. Babies to bear. Workers to inspire. A colony to manage. She moves like that. Like she's a woman with a plan. The best way to see her is to let your eyes lose their focus, let things get a bit fuzzy on you. See the bees as a whole rather than individuals. When you do that, you understand the entire pattern. The queen's movements will stick out because they're so different from everyone else's.
Laura Ruby (Bone Gap)
Asilomar’s lack of focus on ethical issues bothered many religious leaders. That prompted a letter to President Jimmy Carter signed by the heads of three major religious organizations: the National Council of Churches, the Synagogue Council of America, and the U.S. Catholic Conference. “We are rapidly moving into a new era of fundamental danger triggered by the rapid growth of genetic engineering,” they wrote. “Who shall determine how human good is best served when new life forms are being engineered?”13 These decisions should not be left to scientists, the trio argued. “There will always be those who believe it appropriate to ‘correct’ our mental and social structures by genetic means. This becomes more dangerous when the basic tools to do so are finally at hand. Those who would play God will be tempted as never before.
Walter Isaacson (The Code Breaker: Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race)
About half of the salespeople I’ve worked with over the years gave up after a single rejection. They would call a client, the client would say no, and the salesperson would never call that person back. Very few, perhaps only 4 percent to 5 percent, keep trying after four rejections. Yet, as you learned in the previous chapter, I’ve found that it takes about 8.4 rejections to get a meeting. And what makes the difference between people who will face that rejection one time and quit or 40 times and never quit is determined purely by the strength of their ego.
Chet Holmes (The Ultimate Sales Machine: Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies)
When compared to eternal verities, most of the questions and concerns of daily living are really rather trivial. What should we have for dinner? What color should we paint the living room? Should we sign Johnny up for soccer? These questions and countless others like them lose their significance when times of crisis arise, when loved ones are hurt or injured, when sickness enters the house of good health, when life’s candle dims and darkness threatens. Our thoughts become focused, and we are easily able to determine what is really important and what is merely trivial.
Thomas S. Monson
Knowledge opens your mind, understanding opens your heart, wisdom opens your soul. Patience opens your mind, gratitude opens your heart, humility opens your soul. Contentment opens your mind, freedom opens your heart, innocence opens your soul. Pleasure opens your mind, laughter opens your heart, joy opens your soul. Intelligence opens your mind, virtue opens your heart, love opens your soul. Confidence opens your mind, hope opens your heart, faith opens your soul. Focus opens your mind, determination opens your heart, fortitude opens your soul. Thoughts open your mind, emotions open your heart, desires open your soul. Consciousness opens your mind, awareness opens your heart, experience opens your soul. Imagination opens your mind, actions open your heart, life opens your soul. Truth opens your mind, reality opens your heart, destiny opens your soul.
Matshona Dhliwayo
James Dobson, founder of today’s infamous ‘Focus on the Family’ movement,fn1 is equally acquainted with the principle: ‘Those who control what young people are taught, and what they experience – what they see, hear, think, and believe – will determine the future course for the nation.’78
Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion: 10th Anniversary Edition)
Finally there are those who saw at once that the question was a trap. There is no answer. Instead of wasting time grappling with that trap. They decide to act. They look to their childhood and look for what filled them with enthusiasm then and disregarding the advice of their elders, devote their life to it. Because enthusiasm is the sacred fire. They slowly discover, their actions are linked to a mysterious impulse beyond human knowledge. And they bow their heads as a sign of respect for that mystery and pray that they will not be diverted from a path they do not know, a path which they have chosen to travel because of the flame burning in their hearts. They use their intuition when they can and resort to discipline when intuition fails them. They seem quite mad. And sometimes they behave like mad people. But they are not mad. They have discovered true love and will. And those two things reveal the goal and the direction that they should follow. Their will is crystalline, their love is pure and their steps determined. In moments of doubt or sadness they never forget: I am an instrument, allow me to be an instrument capable of manifesting your will. They have chosen their road, and they may understand what their goal is only when they find themselves before the unwanted visitor. That is the beauty of the person who continues onward with enthusiasm and respect for the mystery of life as his only guide. His road is beautiful, and his burden light. The goal will be large or small, it can be far away or right next door. He goes in search of it with respect and honor. He knows what each step means, and how much it costs in effort and training and intuition. He focuses not just on the goal to be reached but on everything happening around him. He often has to stop because his strength fails him. At such moments, love appears and says: You think you're heading toward a specific point, but the whole justification for the goals existence lies in your love for it. Rest a little. But as soon as you can, get up and carry on. Because ever since your goal found out that you were traveling toward it, it has been running to meet you.
Paulo Coelho
PROLOGUE Equinox: Whispers of Destiny Have you ever had the feeling that someone was playing with your destiny? If so, this book is for you. Destiny is certainly a topic people like to talk about. Wherever we go, we hear it mentioned in conversations or proverbs that seek to lay bare its mysteries. If we analyze people’s attitude towards destiny a little, we find straight away that at one extreme there are those who believe that everything in life is planned by a higher power and that therefore things always happen for a reason, even though our limited human understanding cannot comprehend why. In that perspective, everything is preordained, regardless of what we do or don’t do. At the other extreme we find the I can do it! Believers. These focus on themselves: anything is possible if done with conviction, as part of the plan that they have drawn up themselves as the architects of their own destiny. We can safely say that everything happens for a reason. Whether it’s because of decisions we take or simply because circumstances determine it, there is always more causation than coincidence in life. But sometimes such strange things happen. The most insignificant occurrence or decision can give way to the most unexpected futures. Indeed, such twists of fate may well be the reason why you are reading my book now. Do you have any idea of the number of events, circumstances and decisions that had to conspire for me to write this and for you to be reading it now? There are so many coincidences that had to come together that it might almost seem a whim of destiny that today we are connected by these words. One infinitesimal change in that set of circumstances and everything would have been quite different… All these fascinating ideas are to be found in Equinox. I am drawn to fantasy literature because of all the coincidences to reality. As a reader you’re relaxed, your defenses down, trusting the writer to take you on an adventure. This is the ideal space for you to allow yourself to be carried away to an imaginary world that, paradoxically, will leave you reflecting on life questions that have little to do with fiction, but I ask you that perhaps maybe they do.   Gonzalo Guma
Gonzalo Guma (Equinoccio. Susurros del destino)
Maybe you have been wondering about how to win the battle of life. Dress in the armour of war; be well grounded in the requisite knowledge to win your battle. Refine your skills, talents and tactics and forge ahead with determination. Prepare in advance and enter the war with the right strategy. Work with your warriors as a team. Avoid unnecessary mistakes and learn from your errors. Use the right weapons in your arsenal at the right time. Attack your struggles and protect your dreams. Know that timing is everything. Never give up until you destroy all your roadblocks. Capitalise on your strength and with victory in focus you will become a winner.
Sesan Kareem
Don’t invest in other people’s opinion of you. You can change yourself a hundred different ways to get other people to approve of you and there will still be those who don’t. Your beauty will please some and threaten others. Your intelligence will impress one person and offend another. You will be too tall, too short, too smart, too attractive, too nice, not nice enough, too talented, too poor, and not educated enough for people who are determined to not like you. You must decide that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks of you. Their opinions don’t make your bed, pay your bills, or fill your stomach, so stop investing your focus and energy into them.
Emily Maroutian (In Case Nobody Told You: Passages of Wisdom and Encouragement)
Don’t follow your passion, follow your talent. Determine what you are good at (early), and commit to becoming great at it. You don't have to love it, just don't hate it. If practice takes you from good to great, the recognition and compensation you will command will make you start to love it. And, ultimately, you will be able to shape your career and your specialty to focus on the aspects you enjoy the most. And if not—make good money and then go follow your passion. No kid dreams of being a tax accountant. However, the best tax accountants on the planet fly first class and marry people better looking than themselves—both things they are likely to be passionate about.
Scott Galloway (The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google)
For years, walking round London, I had been aware of the actual land, lying concealed but not entirely changed or destroyed, beneath the surface of the nineteenth- and twentieth-century city. It has been said that 'God made the country and man made the town', but that is not true: the town is simply disguised countryside. Main roads, some older than history itself, still bend to avoid long-dried marshes, or veer off at an angle where the wall of a manor house once stood. Hills and valleys still remain; rivers, even though entombed in sewer pipes, still cause trouble in the foundations of neighbouring buildings and become a local focus for winter mists. Garden walls follow the line of hedgerows; the very street-patterns have been determined by the holdings of individual farmers and landlords, parcels of land some of which can be traced back to the Norman Conquest. The situation of specific buildings - pubs, churches, institutions - often dates from long distant decisions and actions on the part of men whose names have vanished from any record.
Gillian Tindall (The Fields Beneath)
All groups and organizations need to know how they are doing against their goals and periodically need to check to determine whether they are performing in line with their mission. This process involves three areas in which the group needs to achieve consensus leading to cultural dimensions that later drop out of awareness and become basic assumptions. Consensus must be achieved on what to measure, how to measure it, and what to do when corrections are needed. The cultural elements that form around each of these issues often become the primary focus for what newcomers to the organization will be concerned about because such measurements inevitably become linked to how each employee is doing his or her job.
Edgar H. Schein (Organizational Culture and Leadership)
Riding the Copernican wave over the last four hundred years, economists have gradually attempted to elevate their craft to the level of pure science, focusing on the behavior of markets involving prices and flows of money which are easily measured. All values are reduced to market values and market prices. Air, water, and essentials of life provided freely by nature are valueless unless scarcity sets in. Gold, diamonds, and other precious metals, and stones which are relatively useless in sustaining life, are valued highly. The value of a human life is determined by calculating a person's lifetime earning potential. Thus, it has been said that economists know the price of everything and the value of nothing.
William F. Pepper (An Act of State: The Execution of Martin Luther King)
I will never turn my back on the ocean: Passion I will paddle around the impact zone: No short cuts I will take the drop with commitment: Courage, focus and determination I will never fight a rip tide: The danger of pride and egotism I will always paddle back out: Perseverance in the face of challenges I will watch out for other surfers after a big set: Responsibility I will know that there will always be another wave: Optimism I will ride and not paddle into shore: Self-esteem I will pass on my stoke to a non-surfer: Sharing knowledge and giving back I will catch a wave every day, even in my mind: Imagination I will realize that all surfers are joined by one ocean: Empathy I will honor the sport of kings: Honor and integrity
Shaun Tomson (Surfer's Code: Twelve Simple Lessons For Riding Through Life)
deliberately withdrawing your attention from the objective world and of focusing it subjectively. In other words, concentrate on those thoughts or moods which you deliberately determine. Then those things that now restrict you will fade and drop away. The day you achieve control of the movements of your attention in the subjective world, you are master of your fate. You will no longer accept the dominance of outside conditions or circumstances. You will not accept life on the basis of the world without. Having achieved control of the movements of your attention, and having discovered the mystery hid from the ages, that Christ in you is your imagination, you will assert the supremacy of imagination and put all things in subjection
Neville Goddard (The Power of Awareness)
Now, more than ever, what is revealed is the fallacy of making individualism the organizing principle of society. What will be our new principle? We need a movement of people who know we need each other, who have a sense of responsibility to others and to the world. We need to proclaim that being kind, having faith, and working for the common good are great life goals that need courage and vigor; while glib superficiality and the mockery of ethics have done us no good. The modern era, which has developed equality and liberty with such determination, now needs to focus on fraternity with the same drive and tenacity to confront the challenges ahead. Fraternity will enable freedom and equality to take its rightful place in the symphony.
Pope Francis (Let Us Dream: The Path to a Better Future)
This one had come to me, though, picked me out. I thought she was trouble from the start. I don't read minds and I can't see the future, but call it instinct or experience, something was prickling my spine. You could call it something else, if you wanted: adolescence, hormones, lust. Being seventeen. That doesn't go away, however long you practice. "Hullo," I said politely, warily. She was long and slim and very neatly put together, dark hair tumbling over denim, old worn black jacket and jeans that somehow hadn't faded into grey. They probably didn't dare. Right from the start I saw a focus in her, a determination that must go all the way through, like the writing in a stick of Brighton rock. In another world, another lifetime, I thought she'd have raven-feathers in her hair, a bear's tooth on a thong about her. She'd be the village shaman, talking to spirits, and even the headman would be afraid of her, a little... Seventeen, I told you. She was devastating to me, she was sitting at my table, and I couldn't afford her. Not for a minute. If I'd stood up, if I'd left, if I'd run away... Nah. She would just have come after me. Faster, fitter, and on longer legs. What chance did I ever have?
Ben Macallan (Desdaemona)
Be honest with yourself. You were at your lowest and broken down. You were unsure and lost hope. You were hiding your fears until you showed them on your sleeve. You felt like everything and everyone was the hammer and you were the nail as they were beating down on you, and it was never-ending. Their empty threats had you scared and you were always running because your weakness was exposed. You were their prey. You didn’t know who to believe because of their mixed signals. You might not see it now, but you are stronger than you can ever imagine. You cannot become comfortable in your pain. You have to let the pain that you feel turn you into a rose without thorns. There are sixteen pieces on the chessboard. The king is the most important piece, but the difference is that the queen is the most powerful piece! You are a queen, you can maneuver around your opponents; they do not have the power over your life, your mind or soul. You might think you’ve been a prisoner, but that is your past’. Look in the now and work your way to how you want your future to be. Exercise your thoughts into a pattern of letting go, and think positively about more of what you want than what you do not want. Queen! You are a queen! As a matter of fact, you are the queen! Act as if you know it! You are powerful, determined, strong, and you can make the biggest and most extravagant move and put it into action. Lights, camera, strike a pose and own it! It is yours to own! Yes, you loved and loved so much. You also lost as well, but you lost hurt, pain, agony, and confusion. You’ve lost interest in wanting to know answers to unanswered questions. You’ve lost the willingness to give a shit about what others think. You’ve surrendered to being fine, that you cannot change the things you have no control over. You’ve lost a lot, but you’ve gained closure. You are now balanced, centered, focused, and filled with peace surrounding you in your heart, mind, body, and soul. Your pride was hurt, but you would rather walk alone and be more willing to give and learn more about the queen you are. You lost yourself in the process, but the more you learn about the new you, the more you will be so much in love with yourself. The more you learn about the new you, the more you will know your worth. The more you learn about the new you, the happier you are going to be, and this time around you will be smiling inside and out! The dots are now connecting. You feel alive! You know now that all is not lost. Now that you’ve cut the cord it is time to give your heart a second chance at loving yourself. Silence your mind. Take a deep breath and close your eyes. As you open your eyes, look at your reflection in the mirror. Aren’t you beautiful, Queen? Embrace who you are. Smile, laugh, welcome the new you and say, “My world is just now beginning.
Charlena E. Jackson (A Woman's Love Is Never Good Enough)
[Skinner] does not invoke other events, processes, or mechanisms which are hypothesized or invented for the purpose of mediating between behavior and its empirical determinants. This omission is sometimes misconstrued as a denial that mediating mechanisms exist; they obviously do, they are obviously neurological and they are also obviously themselves lawful. ...The argument [against employing them as part of scientific practice] is simplicity itself... [Skinner] considers such theoretical terms unnecessary; they may generate research whose only usefulness is to disconfirm the mediating entity or redefine it without increasing our knowledge of behavior's controlling variables; they can become the absorbing focus of an inquiry and so deflect attention from behavior itself; they can become a "refuge from the data".
Kenneth MacCorquodale
Life is not about one obstacle, but many. What’s required of us is not some shortsighted focus on a single facet of a problem, but simply a determination that we will get to where we need to go, somehow, someway, and nothing will stop us. We will overcome every obstacle—and there will be many in life—until we get there. Persistence is an action. Perseverance is a matter of will. One is energy. The other, endurance.
Ryan Holiday (The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph)
People with stamina aren’t made any differently to anyone else,’ she was saying. ‘The only difference is they have a clear goal in mind, and a determination to get there. Stamina is essential to stay focused in a life filled with distraction. It is the ability to stick to a task when your body and mind are at their limit, the ability to keep your head down, swimming in your lane, without looking around, worrying who might overtake you . . .
Matt Haig (The Midnight Library)
This notion that EVERYthing is happening ‘now’ is important because your consciousness is literally rearranging subatomic particles (which determine what you experience in your time and space reality) based on your vibrational setpoint.  And your setpoint is determined by your focus. And you can only control what you focus on NOW in the present moment. In other words, your power to change your life and create your reality is always (and only) “NOW.
Andrew Kap (The Last Law of Attraction Book You'll Ever Need To Read: The Missing Key To Finally Tapping Into The Universe And Manifesting Your Desires)
This seat taken?" My eyes grazing over the only other occupant, a guy with long glossy dark hair with his head bent over a book. "It's all yours," he says. And when he lifts his head and smiles,my heart just about leaps from my chest. It's the boy from my dreams. The boy from the Rabbit Hole,the gas station,and the cave-sitting before me with those same amazing,icy-blue eues, those same alluring lips I've kissed multiple times-but only in slumber, never in waking life. I scold my heart to settle,but it doesn't obey. I admonish myself to sit,to act normal, casual-and I just barely succeed. Stealing a series of surreptitious looks as I search through my backpack, taking in his square chin,wide generous lips,strong brow,defined cheekbones, and smooth brown skin-the exact same features as Cade. "You're the new girl,right?" He abandons his book,tilting his head in a way that causes his hair to stream over his shoulder,so glossy and inviting it takes all of my will not to lean across the table and touch it. I nod in reply,or at least I think I do.I can't be too sure.I'm too stricken by his gaze-the way it mirrors mine-trying to determine if he knows me, recognizes me,if he's surprised to find me here.Wishing Paloma had better prepared me-focused more on him and less on his brother. I force my gaze from his.Bang my knee hard against the table as I swivel in my seat.Feeling so odd and unsettled,I wish I'd picked another place to sit, though it's pretty clear no other table would have me. He buries his smile and returns to the book.Allowing a few minutes to pass,not nearly enough time for me to get a grip on myself,when he looks up and says, "Are you staring at me because you've seen my doppelganer roaming the halls,playing king of the cafeteria? Or because you need to borrow a pencil and you're too shy to ask?" I clear the lump from my throat, push the words past my lips when I say, "No one's ever accused me of being shy." A statement that,while steeped in truth, stands at direct odds with the way I feel now,sitting so close to him. "So I guess it's your twin-or doppelganer,as you say." I keep my voice light, as though I'm not at all affected by his presence,but the trill note at the end gives me away.Every part of me now vibrating with the most intense surge of energy-like I've been plugged into the wall and switched on-and it's all I can do to keep from grabbing hold of his shirt, demanding to know if he dreamed the dreams too. He nods,allowing an easy,cool smile to widen his lips. "We're identical," he says. "As I'm sure you've guessed. Though it's easy enough to tell us apart. For one thing,he keeps his hair short.For another-" "The eyes-" I blurt,regretting the words the instant they're out.From the look on his face,he has no idea what I'm talking about. "Yours" My cheeks burn so hot I force myself to look away,as words of reproach stampede my brain. Why am I acting like such an inept loser? Why do I insist on embarrassing myself-in front of him-of all people? I have to pull it together.I have to remember who I am-what I am-and what I was born to do.Which is basically to crush him and his kind-or,at the very least,to temper the damage they do.
Alyson Noel (Fated (Soul Seekers, #1))
This concept upends the way most people think about their subjective experience of life. We tend to place a lot of emphasis on our circumstances, assuming that what happens to us (or fails to happen) determines how we feel. From this perspective, the small-scale details of how you spend your day aren’t that important, because what matters are the large-scale outcomes, such as whether or not you get a promotion or move to that nicer apartment. According to Gallagher, decades of research contradict this understanding. Our brains instead construct our worldview based on what we pay attention to. If you focus on a cancer diagnosis, you and your life become unhappy and dark, but if you focus instead on an evening martini, you and your life become more pleasant—even though the circumstances in both scenarios are the same. As Gallagher summarizes: “Who you are, what you think, feel, and do, what you love—is the sum of what you focus on.
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
I was standing alone, at bank of a river Singing a song of a dishearten seraph Wind blows throw me, wild and cold Freezing my eyes to capture the knock I was staring at a glimpse straight to my sight Ignoring the glamour and beauty of life I saw someone in the blurred flight Circling over me to focus the light My mind become brighter and so am I Oh! He was there for so long I find I was never as solo as my night I have a perfect one to be on my side I was once weak and disappointed by my journey I was angry and mad on my unfaithful company I tried hard to be stronger and tougher than I mean And now I am determined and full of virtuous deeds I was bored of hectic normal life of mine And couldn’t find anyone to guide on my line I alone discovered what I meant to be My talents, my path and my desired needs I am ready to face the world that I've known To uncover those skills I learned on my own To make a place of acts, not of just words A place of liberty and love to be heard
Iqra Iqbal
What do you think about when you brush your teeth? Probably not brushing your teeth. You’re more likely to be thinking about things you have to do later in the day, later in the week, or some other time in the future. Why? Maybe it’s a habit. Maybe it’s anxiety. Maybe you’re afraid that if you don’t think about the future you will miss something. But you probably won’t. And by not thinking about what you’re doing, you will definitely miss something, maybe even something you never noticed before, something unexpected.
Daniel Z. Lieberman (The Molecule of More: How a Single Chemical in Your Brain Drives Love, Sex, and Creativity—and Will Determine the Fate of the Human Race)
Miroslav Volf puts a finer, harder point on this: we are substantially defined not only by those we love but by who our enemies are. Our own identities are shaped by our interactions with them. As a Croatian Protestant, he was defined by the identity and convictions of Serbian Christians. We are all, whether we wish it or not, in profound relationship with our enemies, especially when that relationship is a combative one. When we respond in kind to hatred and aggression, we risk becoming like our foes. And so the biblical virtue of “love” of enemies is not romantic but practical, a love of action and intention, not of feeling. This religious wisdom would subvert the either/or choices often presented for debate in our age, where rhetoric about enemies local and global abounds. This faith requires both realism and compassion. We might need to fight our enemies or keep them at a safe remove; but we cannot let hatred, anger, and fear toward them determine our character and our actions. This cleansing of focus is the true purpose of forgiveness. I
Krista Tippett (Speaking of Faith: Why Religion Matters--and How to Talk About It)
My Personal Super Shortcut To Happiness - When you prefer to lighten up your self-awareness, allow yourself to focus on your strongest joy, passion, and excitement. It is something you can do at every moment of your life, whenever you become aware of not feeling well. Always choose, out of all available joys, passions and excitements, as small as they may be, whatever makes you feel good about yourself. Act on the joy you determine as the passion of the moment, and enjoy it as long as it is fun for you. When it stops being enjoyable or when there is something else, which you become aware of, as more pleasurable, do it. You do not need any reason to have in order to embrace what interests you. You do not need any reason either, to stop doing something in the middle, when it does not excite you anymore. Whatever you choose to follow as your joy, as small and insignificant as it may appear, have no expectations, how this little joy can take you to your big dreams. Enjoy it only because you like it, and not because you expect some specific outcome in the future.
Raphael Zernoff
New flames built inside her. He swiped a tongue down her sensitive folds once, twice before returning to her clit. Jada cried out, her throat arching. Aching. He didn’t stop. Not when she pleaded. Not when she begged. Thank God. She panted for more. Implored him to release her from this torture. To keep going. He took his cues from her, alternating between slowing and quickening the pace of his fingers and tongue as she responded. “Yes. Like that. Please. Donovan.” She looked down as he looked up. The expression on his face dazzled her. Determined. Intense. Focused on her. Making sure she was taken care of. Turned on. Wild. “Anything you want, baby.” He lowered his head and continued to feast on her like she was a banquet. Strong glides of his tongue were followed by slower swirls. Right when she was about to explode, he gentled his touch. The torture continued until she couldn’t take it anymore. “Donovan,” she pleaded. “I…can’t…” “I got you, baby.” A gentle squeeze of her clit with his teeth and she soared over the edge, tumbling straight down into the abyss.
Jamie Wesley (Fake It Till You Bake It)
The enemy of my soul didn't want me painting that day. To create meant that I would look a little bit like my Creator. To overcome the terrifying angst of the blank canvas meant I would forever have more compassion for other artists. You better believe as I placed the first blue and gray strokes onto the white emptiness before me, the "not good enough" statement was pulsing through my head in almost deafening tones... This parlaying lie is one of his favorite tactics to keep you disillusioned by disappointments. Walls go up, emotions run high, we get guarded, defensive, demotivated, and paralyzed by the endless ways we feel doomed to fail. This is when we quit. This is when we settle for the ease of facebook.... This is when we get a job to simply make money instead of pursuing our calling to make a difference. This is when we put the paintbrush down and don't even try. So there I was. Standing before my painted blue boat, making a choice of which voice to listen to. I'm convinced God was smiling. Pleased. Asking me to find delight in what is right. Wanting me to have compassion for myself by focusing on that part of my painting that expressed something beautiful. To just be eager to give that beauty to whoever dared to look at my boat. To create to love others. Not to beg them for validation. But the enemy was perverting all that. Perfection mocked my boat. The bow was too high, the details too elementary, the reflection on the water too abrupt, and the back of the boat too off-center. Disappointment demanded I hyper-focused on what didn't look quite right. It was my choice which narrative to hold on to: "Not good enough" or "Find delight in what is right." Each perspective swirled, begging me to declare it as truth. I was struggling to make peace with my painting creation, because I was struggling to make make peace with myself as God's creation. Anytime we feel not good enough we deny the powerful truth that we are a glorious work of God in progress. We are imperfect because we are unfinished. So, as unfinished creations, of course everything we attempt will have imperfections. Everything we accomplish will have imperfections. And that's when it hit me: I expect a perfection in me and in others that not even God Himself expects. If God is patient with the process, why can't I be? How many times have I let imperfections cause me to be too hard on myself and too harsh with others? I force myself to send a picture of my boat to at least 20 friends. I was determined to not not be held back by the enemy's accusations that my artwork wasn't good enough to be considered "real art". This wasn't for validation but rather confirmation that I could see the imperfections in my painting but not deem it worthless. I could see the imperfections in me and not deem myself worthless. It was an act of self-compassion. I now knew to stand before each painting with nothing but love, amazement, and delight. I refused to demand anything more from the artist. I just wanted to show up for every single piece she was so brave to put on display.. Might I just be courageous enough to stand before her work and require myself to find everything about it I love? Release my clenched fist and pouty disappointments, and trade my "live up" mentality for a "show up" one? It is so much more freeing to simply show up and be a finder of the good. Break from the secret disappointments. Let my brain venture down the tiny little opening of love.. And I realized what makes paintings so delightful. It's there imperfections. That's what makes it art. It's been touched by a human. It's been created by someone whose hands sweat and who can't possibly transfer divine perfection from what her eyes see to what her fingertips can create. It will be flawed.
Lysa TerKeurst (It's Not Supposed to Be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered)
Unfortunately, most researchers studying gating dynamics in children are, as with “schizophrenia,” focused on “normal” versus “abnormal” gating. And all children are expected to fit into the defined “normal” range of behavior. Sensory gating dynamics outside that culturally determined “norm” are defined as abnormal and researchers note that Individuals with these characteristics have been classified as having sensory processing deficits (SPD). Such behaviors disrupt an individual’s ability to achieve and maintain an optimal range of performance necessary to adapt to challenges in life. The manifestations of SPD may include distraction, impulsiveness, abnormal activity level, disorganization, anxiety, and emotional lability that produce deficient social participation, insufficient self-regulation and inadequate perceived competence.1 Those terms, if you look at them more closely, are exterior, “authority” generated terms; they relate directly to the paradigm in place in those authorities. They really don’t have much to say about the interior experience of the children so labeled.
Stephen Harrod Buhner (Plant Intelligence and the Imaginal Realm: Beyond the Doors of Perception into the Dreaming of Earth)
She stared at him, at his face. Simply stared as the scales fell from her eyes. "Oh, my God," she whispered, the exclamation so quiet not even he would hear. She suddenly saw-saw it all-all that she'd simply taken for granted. Men like him protected those they loved, selflessly, unswervingly, even unto death. The realization rocked her. Pieces of the jigsaw of her understanding of him fell into place. He was hanging to consciousness by a thread. She had to be sure-and his shields, his defenses were at their weakest now. Looking down at her hands, pressed over the nearly saturated pad, she hunted for the words, the right tone. Softly said, "My death, even my serious injury, would have freed you from any obligation to marry me. Society would have accepted that outcome, too." He shifted, clearly in pain. She sucked in a breath-feeling his pain as her own-then he clamped the long fingers of his right hand about her wrist, held tight. So tight she felt he was using her as an anchor to consciousness, to the world. His tone, when he spoke, was harsh. "Oh, yes-after I'd expended so much effort keeping you safe all these years, safe even from me, I was suddenly going to stand by and let you be gored by some mangy bull." He snorted, soft, low. Weakly. He drew in a slow, shallow breath, lips thin with pain, but determined, went on, "You think I'd let you get injured when finally after all these long years I at last understand that the reason you've always made me itch is because you are the only woman I actually want to marry? And you think I would stand back and let you be harmed?" A peevish frown crossed his face. "I ask you, is that likely? Is it even vaguely rational?" He went on, his words increasingly slurred, his tongue tripping over some, his voice fading. She listened, strained to catch every word as he slid into semi delirium, into rambling, disjointed sentences that she drank in, held to her heart. He gave her dreams back to her, reshaped and refined. "Not French Imperial-good, sound, English oak. You can use whatever colors you like, but no gilt-I forbid it." Eventually he ventured further than she had. "And I want at least three children-not just an heir and a spare. At least three-if you're agreeable. We'll have to have two boys, of course-my evil ugly sisters will found us to make good on that. But many girls as you long as they look like you. Or perhaps Cordelia-she's the handsomer of the two uglies." He loved his sisters, his evil ugly sisters. Heather listened with tears in her eyes as his mind drifted and his voice gradually faded, weakened. She'd finally got her declaration, not in anything like the words she'd expected, but in a stronger, impossible-to-doubt exposition. He'd been her protector, unswerving, unflinching, always there; from a man like him, focused on a lady like her, such actions were tantamount to a declaration from the rooftops. The love she'd wanted him to admit to had been there all along, demonstrated daily right before her eyes, but she hadn't seen. Hadn't seen because she'd been focusing elsewhere, and because, conditioned as she was to resisting the same style of possessive protectiveness from her brothers, from her cousins, she hadn't appreciated his, hadn't realized that that quality had to be an expression of his feelings for her. Until now. Until now that he'd all but given his life for hers. He loved her-he'd always loved her. She saw that now, looking back down the years. He'd loved her from the time she'd fallen in love with him-the instant they'd laid eyes on each other at Michael and Caro's wedding in Hampshire four years ago. He'd held aloof, held away-held her at bay, too-believing, wrongly, that he wasn't an appropriate husband for her. In that, he'd been wrong, too. She saw it all. And as the tears overflowed and tracked down her cheeks, she knew to her soul how right he was for her. Knew, embraced, and rejoiced.
Stephanie Laurens (Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue (Cynster, #16; The Cynster Sisters Trilogy, #1))
Lady Merritt Sterling was a vibrantly attractive woman with large, dark eyes, a wealth of lustrous sable hair, and a flawless porcelain complexion. Unlike her two sisters, she had inherited the shorter, stockier frame of the Marsden side instead of the slender build of her mother. Similarly, she had her father's square-shaped face and determined jaw instead of her mother's delicate oval one. However, Merritt possessed a charm so compelling that she eclipsed every other woman in the vicinity, no matter how beautiful. Merritt focused on whomever she was talking to with a wealth of sincere interest, as if she or he were the only person in the world. She asked questions and listened without ever seeming to wait for her turn to talk. She was the guest everyone invited when they needed to blend a group of disparate personalities, just as a roux would bind soap or sauce into velvety smoothness. It was no exaggeration to say that every man who met Merritt fell at least a little in love with her. When she had entered society, countless suitors had pursued her before she'd finally consented to marry Joshua Sterling, an American-born shipping magnate who had taken up residence in London.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil's Daughter (The Ravenels, #5))
What do you see?” my professor asked as he projected a picture of a small black dot in the middle of a very big white screen. I was sitting in Psychology 101 during my years at Sydney University. We all responded immediately: “A black dot.” I was excited, thinking, If all of the questions are as easy as this one, this course is going to be easy! The prof looked out over the class and paused for several seconds before he asked again, “What do you see?” Thinking he must not have heard us properly the first time, we repeated even more loudly: “A black dot!” Again he paused . . . and then asked the same question a third time. Now he had my attention. And when still, on the third try, none of us provided the correct answer, he explained — and gave me a lesson I will never forget. “You were all so focused on the little black dot in the center of the screen that none of you noticed the dominant image on the screen: the large white space covering the screen top to bottom, left to right.” I couldn’t believe I had missed it. Suddenly it was obvious. There was far more white space than black dot. Whatever I chose to focus on had my attention. There is always much more white space than there is space covered by little black dots — we simply need to recognize and focus on it. In class, that idea seemed like an easy notion — easier than it has proven to be in life. Because the harsh reality is that the black dots of our lives — the trials, challenges, disappointments, obstacles, and hurdles we face as we run — will naturally draw and consume our attention. Our enemy would love to get us to focus on those black dots and convince us they define and shape our lives and determine our destiny. But in the divine relay, we are to fix our eyes on Jesus. He is the “white space” of God’s power at work in the universe, and the trials we face are but a tiny speck, a black dot, in comparison. As we learn to focus on the vastness of God’s eternal, amazing work on this planet, those black dots will cease to blemish our lives.
Christine Caine (Unstoppable: Running the Race You Were Born To Win)
I remember sitting here," he said, "and watching you over there." He pointed, but I didn't have to look. Before Cameron and I got close, I spent a lot of lunches the same way, starting off eating and reading on my special bench on the other side of the yard, followed by walking the perimeter of the playground, balancing on the small cement curb that separated the blacktop from the landscaping, around and around and around, hoping I looked busy and like it didn't matter that I had no friends. I sat next to Cameron on the bench. "What did you think when you used to watch me?" He leaned his head against the building. "That I understood you. That you'd understand me." "Do you remember the first time you talked to me? Because I don't. I've been trying to remember for years and I can't get it." "You don't remember? Wasn't me that talked to you. You talked to me." I scooted forward on the bench and looked at him. "I did?" "You walked right across the yard here at recess," he said, pointing. "Came straight up to me." He laughed. "You looked so determined. I was scared you were gonna kick me in the shins or something." I didn't remember this at all, any of it. "You said you were starting a club," he continued. "Asked me if I wanted to join." "Wait..." Something was there, at the very edge of my memory, coming into focus. "Do you remember if it happened to be May Day?" "That the one with the pole and all the ribbons?" "Yes!" "Yep. All the girls had ribbons in their hair but you." Jordana wouldn't let me wear ribbons. She said my hair was too greasy and I might give someone lice, and somehow I submitted to her logic. "I do remember," I said softly. "I haven't thought of that in forever. I kept thinking that you were the one to make friends with me first." "Nope." He smiled. "You started this whole thing. I wanted to, but you were the one with the guts to actually do it." "I think of myself as being a coward, and a baby, scared all the time." He got quiet. We watched kids in the schoolyard playing basketball. "You're not," he finally said. "You know that." He got up suddenly. "Let's go. We got one more stop.
Sara Zarr (Sweethearts)
There is some quite trivial, distant noise; a sound, moreover, which has nothin to do with me, to which there is not the slightest need for me to pay any attention; yet it suffices to wake me, and in no gentle way, either, but savagely, violently, shockingly, like an air raid alarm. The wheels, my masters, are already vibrating with incipient motion; the whole mechanism is preparing to begin the monotonous, hateful functioning of which I am the dispirited slave. I began to feel that if I did not succeed in breaking out of the loathsome circle I should suddenly become mad, scream, perpetrate some shocking act of violence in the open street. But worst of all was the knowledge that the laws of my temperament would forbid me even a relief of this kind. I was inexorably imprisoned behind my own determination to display no emotion whatever. Now I saw that I was in a street which I did not know very well. Night had fallen, the lights glowed mistily through a thin haze. It was as though, in some mysterious way, I had become the central point around which the night scene revolved. People walking on the pavement looked at me as they passed. Some with pity, some with detached interest, some with more morbid curiosity. Some appeared to make small, concealed sights, but whether these were intended for warning or encouragement I could not be sure. The windows lighted or unlighted, were like eyes more or less piercing, but all focused upon me. The houses, the traffic, everything in sight, seemed to be watching to see what I would do. To wait — with no living soul in whom to confide one's doubt, one's fears, one's relentless hope. Some secret court must have tried and condemned me, unheard, to this heavy sentence. Coiling itself round me it knows I cannot escape. Imprisoned in its very fabric, I am like a small worm, a parasite, which the host harbors not altogether unwillingly. A human being can only endure depression up to a certain point. When this point of saturation is reached it becomes necessary for him to discover some element of pleasure. No matter how humble or on how low a level, in his environment if he is to go on living at all.
Anna Kavan (Asylum Piece)
A lady told me about one of her husband’s relatives who was very opinionated. He was always making these cutting, demeaning remarks about her. This couple hadn’t been married that long. Every time they went to family get-togethers, this relative would say something to offend her. She would get all upset and it would ruin the day. She reached the point where she refused to even go to family events. Finally, she told her husband, “You’ve got to do something about that man. He’s your relative.” She was expecting her husband to say, “You’re right, honey. He shouldn’t talk to you like that. I will set him straight.” But the husband did just the opposite. He said, “Honey, I love you but I cannot control him. He has every right to have his opinion. He can say what he wants to, but you have every right to not get offended.” At first she couldn’t understand why her husband wouldn’t really stick up for her. Time and time again she would become upset. If this relative was in one room she would go to another. If he went outside she would make sure she stayed inside. She was always focused on avoiding this man. One day she realized she was giving away her power. It was like a light turned on in her mind. She was allowing one person with issues to keep her from becoming who she was meant to be. When you allow what someone says or does to upset you, you’re allowing them to control you. When you say, “You make me so mad,” what you’re really doing is admitting that you’re giving away your power. As long as that person knows they can push this button and you’ll respond this way, you are giving them exactly what they want. When you allow what someone says or does to upset you, you’re allowing them to control you. People have a right to say what they want, to do what they want, as long as it’s legal. But we have a right to not get offended. We have a right to overlook it. But when we get upset and go around angry, we change. What’s happening is we’re putting too much importance on what they think about us. What they say about you does not define who you are. Their opinion of you does not determine your self-worth. Let that bounce off of you like water off of a duck’s back. They have every right to have their opinion, and you have every right to ignore it.
Joel Osteen (I Declare: 31 Promises to Speak Over Your Life)
What is so rewarding about friendship?” my son asked, curling his upper lip into a sour expression. “Making friends takes too much time and effort, and for what?” I sat on the edge of his bed, understanding how it might seem simpler to go at life solo. “Friendship has unique rewards,” I told him. “They can be unpredictable. For instance....” I couldn’t help but pause to smile crookedly at an old memory that was dear to my heart. Then I shared with my son an unforgettable incident from my younger years. “True story. When I was about your age, I decided to try out for a school play. Tryouts were to begin after the last class of the day, but first I had to run home to grab a couple props for the monologue I planned to perform during tryouts. Silly me, I had left them at the house that morning. Luckily, I only lived across a long expanse of grassy field that separated the school from the nearest neighborhood. Unluckily, it was raining and I didn’t have an umbrella. “Determined to get what I needed, I raced home, grabbed my props, and tore back across the field while my friend waited under the dry protection of the school’s wooden eaves. She watched me run in the rain, gesturing for me to go faster while calling out to hurry up or we would be late. “The rain was pouring by that time which was added reason for me to move fast. I didn’t want to look like a wet rat on stage in front of dozens of fellow students. Don’t ask me why I didn’t grab an umbrella from home—teenage pride or lack of focus, I’m not sure—but the increasing rain combined with the hollering from my friend as well as my anxious nerves about trying out for the play had me running far too fast in shoes that lacked any tread. “About a yard from the sidewalk where the grass was worn from foot traffic and consequently muddied from the downpour of rain, I slipped and fell on my hind end. Me, my props, and my dignity slid through the mud and lay there, coated. My things were dripping with mud. I was covered in it. I felt my heart plunge, and I wanted to cry. I probably would have if it hadn’t been for the wonderful thing that happened right then. My crazy friend ran over and plopped herself down in the mud beside me. She wiggled in it, making herself as much a mess as I was. Then she took my slimy hand in hers and pulled us both to our feet. We tried out for the play looking like a couple of swine escaped from a pigsty, laughing the whole time. I never did cry, thanks to my friend. “So yes, my dear son, friendship has its unique rewards—priceless ones.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Slaying Dragons: Quotes, Poetry, & a Few Short Stories for Every Day of the Year)
In the end, it was the little details of the wedding that Daphne remembered. There were tears in her mother's eyes (and then eventually on her face), and Anthony's voice had been oddly hoarse when he stepped forward to give her away. Hyacinth had strewn her rose petals too quickly, and there were none left by the time she reached the altar. Gregory sneezed three times before they even got to their vows. And she remembered the look of concentration on Simon's face as he repeated his vows. Each syllable was uttered slowly and carefully. His eyes burned with intent, and his voice was low but true. To Daphne, it sounded as if nothing in the world could possibly be as important as the words he spoke as they stood before the archbishop. Her heart found comfort in this; no man who spoke his vows with such intensity could possibly view marriage as a mere convenience. Those whom God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. A shiver raced down Daphne's spine, causing her to sway. In just a moment, she would belong to this man forever. Simon's head turned slightly, his eyes darting to her face. Are you all right? his eyes asked. She nodded, a tiny little jog of her chin that only he could see. Something blazed in his eyes—could it be relief? I now pronounce you— Gregory sneezed for a fourth time, then a fifth and sixth, completely obliterating the archbishop's “man and wife.” Daphne felt a horrifying bubble of mirth pushing up her throat. She pressed her lips together, determined to maintain an appropriately serious facade. Marriage, after all, was a solemn institution, and not one to be treating as a joke. She shot a glance at Simon, only to find that he was looking at her with a queer expression. His pale eyes were focused on her mouth, and the corners of his lips began to twitch. Daphne felt that bubble of mirth rising ever higher. You may kiss the bride. Simon grabbed her with almost desperate arms, his mouth crashing down on hers with a force that drew a collective gasp from the small assemblage of guests. And then both sets of lips—bride and groom—burst into laughter, even as they remained entwined. Violet Bridgerton later said it was the oddest kiss she'd ever been privileged to view. Gregory Bridgerton—when he finished sneezing—said it was disgusting. The archbishop, who was getting on in years, looked perplexed. But Hyacinth Bridgerton, who at ten should have known the least about kisses of anyone, just blinked thoughtfully, and said, “I think it's nice. If they're laughing now, they'll probably be laughing forever.” She turned to her mother. “Isn't that a good thing?” Violet took her youngest daughter's hand and squeezed it. “Laughter is always a good thing, Hyacinth. And thank you for reminding us of that.” And so it was that the rumor was started that the new Duke and Duchess of Hastings were the most blissfully happy and devoted couple to be married in decades. After all, who could remember another wedding with so much laughter?
Julia Quinn (The Duke and I (Bridgertons, #1))
Skills Unlocked: How to Build Heroic Character Strengths If you want to make a change for the better or achieve a tough goal, don’t worry about motivation. Instead, focus on increasing your self-efficacy: confidence in your ability to solve your own problems and achieve your goals. The fastest and most reliable way to increase your self-efficacy is to learn how to play a new game. Any kind of game will do, because all games require you to learn new skills and tackle tough goals. The level of dopamine in your brain influences your ability to build self-efficacy. The more you have, the more determined you feel, and the less likely you are to give up. You’ll learn faster, too—because high dopamine levels improve your attention and help you process feedback more effectively. Keep in mind that video games have been shown to boost dopamine levels as much as intravenous amphetamines. Whenever you want to boost your dopamine levels, play a game—or make a prediction. Predictions prime your brain to pay closer attention and to anticipate a reward. (Playing “worst-case scenario bingo” is an excellent way to combine these two techniques!) You can also build self-efficacy vicariously by watching an avatar that looks like you accomplish feats in a virtual world. Whenever possible, customize video game avatars to look like you. Every time your avatar does something awesome, you’ll get a vicarious boost to your willpower and determination. Remember, self-efficacy doesn’t just help you. It can inspire you to help others. The more powerful you feel, the more likely you are to rise to the heroic occasion. So the next time you feel superpowerful, take a moment to ask yourself how you can use your powers for good.
Jane McGonigal (SuperBetter: A Revolutionary Approach to Getting Stronger, Happier, Braver and More Resilient--Powered by the Science of Games)
with this line of reasoning. If it makes you feel better, you are free to go on calling Communism an ideology rather than a religion. It makes no difference. We can divide creeds into god-centred religions and godless ideologies that claim to be based on natural laws. But then, to be consistent, we would need to catalogue at least some Buddhist, Daoist and Stoic sects as ideologies rather than religions. Conversely, we should note that belief in gods persists within many modern ideologies, and that some of them, most notably liberalism, make little sense without this belief. It would be impossible to survey here the history of all the new modern creeds, especially because there are no clear boundaries between them. They are no less syncretic than monotheism and popular Buddhism. Just as a Buddhist could worship Hindu deities, and just as a monotheist could believe in the existence of Satan, so the typical American nowadays is simultaneously a nationalist (she believes in the existence of an American nation with a special role to play in history), a free-market capitalist (she believes that open competition and the pursuit of self-interest are the best ways to create a prosperous society), and a liberal humanist (she believes that humans have been endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights). Nationalism will be discussed in Chapter 18. Capitalism – the most successful of the modern religions – gets a whole chapter, Chapter 16, which expounds its principal beliefs and rituals. In the remaining pages of this chapter I will address the humanist religions. Theist religions focus on the worship of gods. Humanist religions worship humanity, or more correctly, Homo sapiens. Humanism is a belief that Homo sapiens has a unique and sacred nature, which is fundamentally different from the nature of all other animals and of all other phenomena. Humanists believe that the unique nature of Homo sapiens is the most important thing in the world, and it determines the meaning of everything that happens in the universe. The supreme good is the good of Homo sapiens. The rest of the world and all other beings exist solely for the benefit of this species. All humanists worship humanity, but they do not agree on its definition. Humanism has split into three rival sects that fight over the exact definition of ‘humanity’, just as rival Christian sects fought over the exact definition of God. Today, the most important humanist sect is liberal humanism, which believes that ‘humanity’ is a quality of individual humans, and that the liberty of individuals is therefore sacrosanct. According to liberals, the sacred nature of humanity resides within each and every individual Homo sapiens. The inner core of individual humans gives meaning to the world, and is the source for all ethical and political authority. If we encounter an ethical or political dilemma, we should look inside and listen to our inner voice – the voice of humanity. The chief commandments of liberal humanism are meant to protect the liberty of this inner voice against intrusion or harm. These commandments are collectively known as ‘human rights’. This, for example, is why liberals object to torture and the death penalty. In early modern Europe, murderers were thought to violate and destabilise the cosmic order. To bring the cosmos back to balance, it was necessary to torture and publicly execute the criminal, so that everyone could see the order re-established. Attending gruesome executions was a favourite pastime for Londoners and Parisians in the era of Shakespeare and Molière. In today’s Europe, murder is seen as a violation of the sacred nature of humanity. In order to restore order, present-day Europeans do not torture and execute criminals. Instead, they punish a murderer in what they see as the most ‘humane
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)