Successful School Quotes

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In the short term, it would make me happy to go play outside. In the long term, it would make me happier to do well at school and become successful. But in the VERY long term, I know which will make better memories.
Bill Watterson (It's a Magical World (Calvin and Hobbes, #11))
Once a musician has enough ability to get into a top music school, the thing that distinguishes one performer from another is how hard he or she works. That's it. And what's more, the people at the very top don't work just harder or even much harder than everyone else. They work much, much harder.
Malcolm Gladwell (Outliers: The Story of Success)
Teenage girls, please don’t worry about being super popular in high school, or being the best actress in high school, or the best athlete. Not only do people not care about any of that the second you graduate, but when you get older, if you reference your successes in high school too much, it actually makes you look kind of pitiful, like some babbling old Tennessee Williams character with nothing else going on in her current life. What I’ve noticed is that almost no one who was a big star in high school is also big star later in life. For us overlooked kids, it’s so wonderfully fair.
Mindy Kaling (Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns))
Your comfort zone is a place where you keep yourself in a self-illusion and nothing can grow there but your potentiality can grow only when you can think and grow out of that zone.
Rashedur Ryan Rahman
Q, you're going to go to Duke. You're going to be a very successful lawyer-or-something and get married and have babies and live your whole little life, and then you're going to die, and in the last moments, when you're chocking on your own bile in the nursing home, you'll say to yourself:'Well, I wasted my whole goddamned life, but at least I broke into SeaWorld with Margo Roth Spiegelman my senior year of high school. At least I carpe'd that one diem.
John Green (Paper Towns)
Can teachers successfully educate children to think for themselves if teachers are not treated as professionals who think for themselves?
Diane Ravitch (The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education)
I dropped out of school and congratulated myself for my diligence. Few realize how hard one has to work to resist the pressures of conventional success.
Bauvard (The Prince Of Plungers)
Every beginner possesses a great potential to be an expert in his or her chosen field.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
Business schools don't create successful people. They simply accept them, then take credit for their success.
Josh Kaufman (The Personal MBA: A World-Class Business Education in a Single Volume)
Peeta,” I say lightly. “You said at the interview you’d had a crush on me forever. When did forever start?” “Oh, let’s see. I guess the first day of school. We were five. You had on a red plaid dress and your hair... it was in two braids instead of one. My father pointed you out when we were waiting to line up,” Peeta says. “Your father? Why?” I ask. “He said, ‘See that little girl? I wanted to marry her mother, but she ran off with a coal miner,’” Peeta says. “What? You’re making that up!” I exclaim. “No, true story,” Peeta says. “And I said, ‘A coal miner? Why did she want a coal miner if she could’ve had you?’ And he said, ‘Because when he sings... even the birds stop to listen.’” “That’s true. They do. I mean, they did,” I say. I’m stunned and surprisingly moved, thinking of the baker telling this to Peeta. It strikes me that my own reluctance to sing, my own dismissal of music might not really be that I think it’s a waste of time. It might be because it reminds me too much of my father. “So that day, in music assembly, the teacher asked who knew the valley song. Your hand shot right up in the air. She stood you up on a stool and had you sing it for us. And I swear, every bird outside the windows fell silent,” Peeta says. “Oh, please,” I say, laughing. “No, it happened. And right when your song ended, I knew—just like your mother—I was a goner,” Peeta says. “Then for the next eleven years, I tried to work up the nerve to talk to you.” “Without success,” I add. “Without success. So, in a way, my name being drawn in the reaping was a real piece of luck,” says Peeta. For a moment, I’m almost foolishly happy and then confusion sweeps over me. Because we’re supposed to be making up this stuff, playing at being in love not actually being in love. But Peeta’s story has a ring of truth to it. That part about my father and the birds. And I did sing the first day of school, although I don’t remember the song. And that red plaid dress... there was one, a hand-me-down to Prim that got washed to rags after my father’s death. It would explain another thing, too. Why Peeta took a beating to give me the bread on that awful hollow day. So, if those details are true... could it all be true? “You have a... remarkable memory,” I say haltingly. “I remember everything about you,” says Peeta, tucking a loose strand of hair behind my ear. “You’re the one who wasn’t paying attention.” “I am now,” I say. “Well, I don’t have much competition here,” he says. I want to draw away, to close those shutters again, but I know I can’t. It’s as if I can hear Haymitch whispering in my ear, “Say it! Say it!” I swallow hard and get the words out. “You don’t have much competition anywhere.” And this time, it’s me who leans in.
Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1))
I survived by keeping my emotions in check – by maintaining my composure and tucking it all away. I managed to stay under the radar, skating through school without anyone truly remembering I was here. My teachers acknowledged my academic successes and my coaches depended upon my athletic abilities, but I wasn’t important enough to make a recognizable social contribution. I was easily forgettable. That’s what I counted on.
Rebecca Donovan (Reason to Breathe (Breathing, #1))
A Student is the most important person ever in this school...in person, on the telephone, or by mail. A Student is not dependent on us...we are dependent on the Student. A Student is not an interruption of our work..the Studenti s the purpose of it. We are not doing a favor by serving the Student...the Student is doing us a favor by giving us the opportunity to do so. A Student is a person who brings us his or her desire to learn. It is our job to handle each Student in a manner which is beneficial to the Student and ourselves.
William W. Purkey (Becoming an Invitational Leader: A New Approach to Professional and Personal Success)
I’ve successfully lobbied and testified for stalking laws in several states, but I would trade them all for a high school class that would teach young men how to hear “no,” and teach young women that it’s all right to explicitly reject.
Gavin de Becker (The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence)
Linus: What's wrong, Charlie Brown? Charlie Brown: I just got terrible news. The teacher says we're going on a field trip to an art museum; and I have to get an A on my report or I'll fail the whole course. Why do we have to have all this pressure about grades, Linus? Linus: Well, I think that the purpose of going to school is to get good grades so then you can go on to high school; and the purpose is to study hard so you can get good grades so you can go to college; and the purpose of going to college is so you can get good grades so you can go on to graduate school; and the purpose of that is to work hard and get good grades so we can get a job and be successful so that we can get married and have kids so we can send them to grammar school to get good grades so they can go to high school to get good grades so they can go to college and work hard... Charlie Brown: Good grief!
Charles M. Schulz
Schools are designed on the assumption that there is a secret to everything in life; that the quality of life depends on knowing that secret; that secrets can be known only in orderly successions; and that only teachers can properly reveal these secrets. An individual with a schooled mind conceives of the world as a pyramid of classified packages accessible only to those who carry the proper tags.
Ivan Illich (Deschooling Society)
It is a healthy approach not to expect persons to turn out precisely how you would have wished.
Criss Jami (Healology)
It is a fundamental truth that the responsibilities of motherhood cannot be successfully delegated. No, not to day-care centers, not to schools, not to nurseries, not to babysitters. We become enamored with men’s theories such as the idea of preschool training outside the home for young children. Not only does this put added pressure on the budget, but it places young children in an environment away from mother’s influence. Too often the pressure for popularity, on children and teens, places an economic burden on the income of the father, so mother feels she must go to work to satisfy her children’s needs. That decision can be most shortsighted. It is mother’s influence during the crucial formative years that forms a child’s basic character. Home is the place where a child learns faith, feels love, and thereby learns from mother’s loving example to choose righteousness. How vital are mother’s influence and teaching in the home—and how apparent when neglected!
Ezra Taft Benson
Dr. Richard Davidson, a neuroscientist at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, concludes, “Your grades in school, your scores on the SAT, mean less for life success than your capacity to co-operate, your ability to regulate your emotions, your capacity to delay your gratification, and your capacity to focus your attention. Those skills are far more important—all the data indicate—for life success than your IQ or your grades.
Michio Kaku (The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind)
Life is too short to be anything but happy. So kiss slowly. Love deeply. Forgive quickly. Take chances and never have regrets. Forget the past but remember what it taught you.
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
The American system is the most ingenious system of control in world history. With a country so rich in natural resources, talent, and labor power the system can afford to distribute just enough wealth to just enough people to limit discontent to a troublesome minority. It is a country so powerful, so big, so pleasing to so many of its citizens that it can afford to give freedom of dissent to the small number who are not pleased. There is no system of control with more openings, apertures, leeways, flexibilities, rewards for the chosen, winning tickets in lotteries. There is none that disperses its controls more complexly through the voting system, the work situation, the church, the family, the school, the mass media--none more successful in mollifying opposition with reforms, isolating people from one another, creating patriotic loyalty.
Howard Zinn (A People’s History of the United States: 1492 - Present)
Most of these students are so conditioned to success that they become afraid to take risks. They have been taught from a young age by zealous parents, schools, and institutional authorities what constitutes failure and success. They are socialized to obey. They obsess over grades and seek to please professors, even if what professors teach is fatuous. The point is to get ahead, and getting ahead means deference to authority. Challenging authority is never a career advancer.
Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)
I was never the cool kid, I was never hot in high school. I was never popular. You don't have to be perfect and you don't have to be rich and you can still be successful.
Ke$ha
Live a life that leaves a memory, nobody can steal.
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
Creativity is paradoxical. To create, a person must have knowledge but forget the knowledge, must see unexpected connections in things but not have a mental disorder, must work hard but spend time doing nothing as information incubates, must create many ideas yet most of them are useless, must look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different, must desire success but embrace failure, must be persistent but not stubborn, and must listen to experts but know how to disregard them." [Twelve Things You Were Not Taught in School About Creative Thinking (The Creativity Post, December 6, 2011)]
Michael Michalko
Your VISION and your self-willingness is the MOST powerful elements to conquer your goal
Rashedur Ryan Rahman
Aesthetic value emanates from the struggle between texts: in the reader, in language, in the classroom, in arguments within a society. Aesthetic value rises out of memory, and so (as Nietzsche saw) out of pain, the pain of surrendering easier pleasures in favour of much more difficult ones ... successful literary works are achieved anxieties, not releases from anxieties.
Harold Bloom (The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages)
Scholars have argued that without humanism the Reformation could not have succeeded, and it is certainly difficult to imagine the Reformation occurring without the knowledge of languages, the critical handling of sources, the satirical attacks on clerics and scholastics, and the new national feeling that a generation of humanists provided. On the other hand, the long-term success of the humanists owed something to the Reformation. In Protestant schools and universities classical culture found a permanent home. The humanist curriculum, with its stress on languages and history, became a lasting model for the arts curriculum.
Steven E. Ozment (The Age of Reform 1250-1550: An Intellectual and Religious History of Late Medieval and Reformation Europe)
I blame the Internet. Its inconsiderate inclusion of everything.Success is transparent and accessible, hanging down where it can tease but not touch us. We talk into these scratchy microphones and take extra photographs but I still feel like there are just SO MANY PEOPLE. Every day, 1,035.6 books are published; sixty-six million people update their status each morning. At night, aimlessly scrolling, I remind myself of elementary school murals. One person can make a difference! But the people asking me what I want to be when I grow up don't want me to make a poster anymore. They want me to fill out forms and hand them rectangular cards that say HELLO THIS IS WHAT I DO.
Marina Keegan (The Opposite of Loneliness: Essays and Stories)
Tamaki to Kyoya: I thought you wanted more because your eyes don't show satisfaction now.
Bisco Hatori (Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 8 (Ouran High School Host Club, #8))
Things get done only if the data we gather can inform and inspire those in a position to make difference.
Mike Schmoker (Results: The Key to Continuous School Improvement)
We know – it has been measured in many experiments – that children with strong impulse control grow to be better adjusted, more dependable, achieve higher grades in school and college and have more success in their careers than others. Success depends on the ability to delay gratification, which is precisely what a consumerist culture undermines. At every stage, the emphasis is on the instant gratification of instinct. In the words of the pop group Queen, “I want it all and I want it now.” A whole culture is being infantilised.
Jonathan Sacks
Our leaders strain every nerve and with success, to get the next war going, while the rest of us, meanwhile, dance the fox trot, earn money and eat chocolates...And perhaps...it has always been the same and always will be, and what is called history at school, and all we learn by heart there about heroes and geniuses and great deeds and fine emotions, is all nothing but a swindle invented by the schoolmasters for educational reasons to keep children occupied for a given number of years. It has always been so and always will be. Time and the world, money and power belong to the small people and shallow people. To the rest, to the real men belongs nothing...eternity...it isn't fame. Fame exists in that sense only for the schoolmasters. No, it isn't fame. It is what I call eternity...The music of Mozart belongs there and the poetry of your great poets. The saints, too, belong there, who have worked wonders and suffered martyrdom and given a great example to men. But the image of every true act, the strength of every true feeling, belongs to eternity just as much, even though no one knows of it or sees it or records it or hands it down to posterity. In eternity there is no posterity...It is the kingdom on the other side of time and appearances. It is there we belong. There is our home. It is that which our heart strives for...And we have no one to guide us. Our only guide is our homesickness.
Hermann Hesse (Steppenwolf)
Taxation is the price we pay for failing to build a civilized society. The higher the tax level, the greater the failure. A centrally planned totalitarian state represents a complete defeat for the civilized world, while a totally voluntary society represents its ultimate success.
Mark Skousen
The only unreachable dream is the one you don’t reach for.
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
Success comes with failure which leads to doubts but with determination we can still achieve.
Jonathan Anthony Burkett
We need people who push boundaries rather than retreat inside them.
Tim Fargo
We are surrounded by stories that conspire to make success seem easier than it is, and therefore that unwittingly destroy the confidence we can muster in the face of our obstacles.
The School of Life (On Confidence)
Society functions in a way much more interesting than the multiple-choice pattern we have been rewarded for succeeding at in school. Success in life comes not from the ability to choose between the four presented answers, but from the rather more difficult and painfully acquired ability to formulate the questions.
David Mamet (The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture)
The conventional explanation for Jewish success, of course, is that Jews come from a literate, intellectual culture. They are famously "the people of the book." There is surely something to that. But it wasn't just the children of rabbis who went to law school. It was the children of garment workers. And their critical advantage in climbing the professional ladder wasn't the intellectual rigor you get from studying the Talmud. It was the practical intelligence and savvy you get from watching your father sell aprons on Hester Street.
Malcolm Gladwell (Outliers: The Story of Success)
Many skills, as every successful entrepreneur knows, cannot be taught in school. They require doing. Sometimes a life of doing. And where money-making is concerned, nothing compresses the time frame needed to leap from my-shit-just-sits-there-until-it-rains poverty to which-of-my-toilets-shall-I-use affluence like an apprenticeship with someone who already has the angles all figured out.
Mohsin Hamid (How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia)
The quality of the relationships that students have in class with their peers and teachers is important to their success in school.
Bob Pletka (Educating the Net Generation: How to Engage Students in the 21st Century)
If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present.
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
Successful teaching is not head-to-head; it is heart-to-heart.
Tamara L. Chilver
Many students, especially those who are poor, intuitively know what the schools do for them. They school them to confuse process and substance. Once these become blurred, a new logic is assumed: the more treatment there is, the better are the results; or, escalation leads to success. The pupil is thereby "schooled" to confuse teaching with learning, grade advancement with education, a diploma with competence, and fluency with the ability to say something new. His imagination is "schooled" to accept service in place of value.
Ivan Illich (Deschooling Society)
I reread the Odyssey at that time, which I had first read in school and remembered as a story of a homecoming.But it is not a story of a homecoming. How could the Greeks who knew that one never enters the same river twice, believe in homecoming? Odysseus does not return home to stay, but to set off again. The Odyssey is the story of motion both purposeful and purposeless, successful and futile.
Bernhard Schlink (The Reader)
The richest people in the world build networks and invest in people; everyone else looks for work and invests in survival.
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
Tenderhearted people are silent sufferers they just learn the art to fly with broken wings.
Abhysheq Shukla (Feelings Undefined: The Charm of the Unsaid Vol. 1)
The secret of his success is that he never went to business school. Imagina all the lessons he never had to unlearn.
Peter Lynch (One Up On Wall Street: How to Use What You Already Know to Make Money in the Market)
If you fail an examination, it means you have not yet master the subject. With diligent study and understanding, you will succeed in passing the exams.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind)
Those accustomed to failure fear the novelty of success. Those taught the lessons of subordination are oft timid in the school of self-service.
M.T. Anderson (The Kingdom on the Waves (The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, #2))
Why don't we learn about the mental health which affects every minute of our lives? ... Where is the school for learning [about] positive mental health?
Maddy Malhotra (How to Build Self-Esteem and Be Confident: Overcome Fears, Break Habits, Be Successful and Happy)
My priority is not about grades. I seek yearn for knowledge, skills and wisdom.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind)
Life's too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, So ... Love the people who treat you right and pray for the ones who don't. Life is 10% what you make it 90% how you take it.
Abhysheq Shukla (Feelings Undefined: The Charm of the Unsaid Vol. 1)
Your grades in school, your scores on the SAT, mean less for life success than your capacity to co-operate, your ability to regulate your emotions, your capacity to delay your gratification, and your capacity to focus your attention. Those skills are far more important—all the data indicate—for life success than your IQ or your grades.
Michio Kaku (The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind)
If you want an average, successful life, it doesn’t take much planning. Just stay out of trouble, go to school, and apply for jobs you might like. But if you want something extraordinary, you have two paths: 1) Become the best at one specific thing. 2) Become very good (top 25%) at two or more things. The
Timothy Ferriss (Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers)
Have you noticed how the cleverest people at school are not those who make it in life? People who are conventionally clever get jobs on their qualifications (the past), not on their desire to succeed (the future). Very simply, they get overtaken by those who continually strive to be better than they are.
Paul Arden (It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want To Be)
If we want to, say, develop schools in disadvantaged communities that can successfully counteract the poisonous atmosphere of their surrounding neighborhoods, this tells us that we’re probably better off building lots of little schools than one or two big ones.
Malcolm Gladwell (The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference)
Respect for individual human personality has with us reached its lowest point," observed one intellectual in 1921, "and it is delightfully ironical that no nation is so constantly talking about personality as we are. We actually have schools for 'self-expression' and 'self-development,' although we seem usually to mean the expression and development of a successful real estate agent.
Susan Cain (Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking)
His struggle to mold me in his image had been successful after all. The old walrus in fact managed to instill in me a great and burning ambition; it had simply found expression in an unintended pursuit. He never understood that the Devils Thumb was the same as medical school, only different.
Jon Krakauer (Into the Wild)
I don’t sell spells, and I don’t sell tricks. I don’t carry illusions or marked cards or weighted coins. I cannot sell you an endless purse or help you win the lottery. I can’t make that girl you’ve got your eye on fall in love with you, and I wouldn’t do it even if I could. I don’t have a psychic hotline to your dead relatives, I don’t know if you’re going to be successful in your career, and I don’t know when you’re going to get married. I can’t get you into Hogwarts or any other kind of magic school, and if you even mention those stupid sparkly vampires I will do something unpleasant to you.
Benedict Jacka (Cursed (Alex Verus, #2))
Petunia Temminnick’s coming-out ball was pronounced a resounding success by all in attendance. There had been highly intoxicating punch, a variety of dances, good music, and intermission entertainment. No one knew why the beautiful Miss Pelouse had stripped, rolled about in the garden, and then chucked a cheese pie at the youngest Temminnick girl before being taken away in floods of tears, but it was surely the highlight of a most enjoyable evening.
Gail Carriger (Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School, #1))
You know that my refrigerator is never full, and it never will be because I live a mission-driven life, always on the hunt for the next challenge. That mindset is the reason I broke that record, finished Badwater, became a SEAL, rocked Ranger School, and on down the list. In my mind I’m that racehorse always chasing a carrot I’ll never catch, forever trying to prove myself to myself. And when you live that way and attain a goal, success feels anti-climactic.
David Goggins (Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds)
That's my school. I worked harder to get in than I did for anything else, ever. I went there because, coming out of it, I'd be able to be President. Or a lawyer. Rich, that's the point. Rich and successful. And look where it got me. One stupid year and here I am with not one, but two bracelets on my wrist, next to a shrink in a room adjacent to a hall where there's a guy named Human Being walking around. If I keep doing this for three more years, where will I be? I'll be a complete loser. And what If I keep on? What if I do okay, live with the depression, get into College, do College, go to Grad School, get the Job, get the Money, get Kids and a Wife and a Nice Car? What kind of crap will I be in then? I'll be completely crazy.
Ned Vizzini (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
Maybe I should let my faithful manservant answer the rest of your questions, since he seems to have all the answers." "I'm saving her time," Bodie replied. "She brings you a redhead, you'll give her grief. Look for women with class, Annabelle. That's most important. The sophisticated types who went to boarding schools and speak French. She has to be the real thing because he can spot a phony a mile away. And he likes them athletic." "Of course he does," she said dryly. "Athletic, domestic, gorgeous, brilliant, socially connected, and pathologically submissive. It'll be a snap." "You forgot hot." Heath smiled. "And defeatist thinking is for losers. If you want to be a success in this world, Annabelle, you need a positive attitude. Whatever the client wants, you get it for him. First rule of a successful business." "Uh-huh. What about career women?" "I don't see how that would work." "The kind of potential mate you're describing isn't going to be sitting around waiting for her prince to show up. She's heading a major corporation. In between those Victoria's Secret modeling gigs." He lifted an eyebrow. "Attitude, Annabelle. Attitude.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips (Match Me If You Can (Chicago Stars, #6))
At last, Sturmhond straightened the lapels of his teal frock coat and said, “Well, Brekker, it’s obvious you only deal in half-truths and outright lies, so you’re clearly the man for the job.” “There’s just one thing,” said Kaz, studying the privateer’s broken nose and ruddy hair. “Before we join hands and jump off a cliff together, I want to know exactly who I’m running with.” Sturmhond lifted a brow. “We haven’t been on a road trip or exchanged clothes, but I think our introductions were civilized enough.” “Who are you really, privateer?” “Is this an existential question?” “No proper thief talks the way you do.” “How narrow-minded of you.” “I know the look of a rich man’s son, and I don’t believe a king would send an ordinary privateer to handle business this sensitive.” “Ordinary,” scoffed Sturmhond. “Are you so schooled in politics?” “I know my way around a deal. Who are you? We get the truth or my crew walks.” “Are you so sure that would be possible, Brekker? I know your plans now. I’m accompanied by two of the world’s most legendary Grisha, and I’m not too bad in a fight either.” “And I’m the canal rat who brought Kuwei Yul-Bo out of the Ice Court alive. Let me know how you like your chances.” His crew didn’t have clothes or titles to rival the Ravkans, but Kaz knew where he’d put his money if he had any left. Sturmhond clasped his hands behind his back, and Kaz saw the barest shift in his demeanor. His eyes lost their bemused gleam and took on a surprising weight. No ordinary privateer at all. “Let us say,” said Sturmhond, gaze trained on the Ketterdam street below, “hypothetically, of course, that the Ravkan king has intelligence networks that reach deep within Kerch, Fjerda, and the Shu Han, and that he knows exactly how important Kuwei Yul-Bo could be to the future of his country. Let us say that king would trust no one to negotiate such matters but himself, but that he also knows just how dangerous it is to travel under his own name when his country is in turmoil, when he has no heir and the Lantsov succession is in no way secured.” “So hypothetically,” Kaz said, “you might be addressed as Your Highness.
Leigh Bardugo (Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2))
There are nowadays professors of philosophy, but not philosophers. Yet it is admirable to profess because it was once admirable to live. To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom as to live according to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity, and trust. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically. The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly.
Henry David Thoreau
In theory, the risk of business failure can be reduced to a number, the probability of failure multiplied by the cost of failure. Sure, this turns out to be a subjective analysis, but in the process your own attitudes toward financial risk and reward are revealed. By contrast, personal risk usually defies quantification. It's a matter of values and priorities, an expression of who you are. "Playing it safe" may simply mean you do not weigh heavily the compromises inherent in the status quo. The financial rewards of the moment may fully compensate you for the loss of time and fulfillment. Or maybe you just don't think about it. On the other hand, if time and satisfaction are precious, truly priceless, you will find the cost of business failure, so long as it does not put in peril the well-being of you or your family, pales in comparison with the personal risks of no trying to live the life you want today. Considering personal risk forces us to define personal success. We may well discover that the business failure we avoid and the business success we strive for do not lead us to personal success at all. Most of us have inherited notions of "success" from someone else or have arrived at these notions by facing a seemingly endless line of hurdles extending from grade school through college and into our careers. We constantly judge ourselves against criteria that others have set and rank ourselves against others in their game. Personal goals, on the other hand, leave us on our own, without this habit of useless measurement and comparison. Only the Whole Life Plan leads to personal success. It has the greatest chance of providing satisfaction and contentment that one can take to the grave, tomorrow. In the Deferred Life Plan there will always be another prize to covet, another distraction, a new hunger to sate. You will forever come up short.
Randy Komisar (The Monk and the Riddle: The Education of a Silicon Valley Entrepreneur)
How do you choose a successor? Look at her or his track record. A good successor would have a track record of successes - great grades, great schools, great successes at work and steady climb up the ladder. Throughout her or his career, there has been challenges which were overcame. It builds character, fortitude, and strength. - STRONG by Kailin Gow
Kailin Gow
interviews showed me that successful people are playing an entirely different game. They don’t flood the job market with résumés, hoping that some employer will grace them with an interview. They network. They email a friend of a friend to make sure their name gets the look it deserves. They have their uncles call old college buddies. They have their school’s career service office set up interviews months in advance on their behalf. They have parents tell them how to dress, what to say, and whom to schmooze. That
J.D. Vance (Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis)
The unbelievably meager wages from working day and night, popping caffeine pills, and turning jaundiced went toward sending male siblings to school. This was a time when people believed it was up to the sons to bring honor and prosperity to the family, and that the family’s wealth and happiness hinged upon male success. The daughters gladly supported the male siblings.4
Cho Nam-Joo (Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982)
What a laugh, though. To think that one human being could ever really know another. You could get used to each other, get so habituated that you could speak their words right along with them, but you never knew why other people said what they said or did what they did, because they never even knew themselves. Nobody understands anybody. And yet somehow we live together, mostly in peace, and get things done with a high enough success rate that people keep trying. Human beings get married and a lot of marriages work, and they have children and most of them grow up to be decent people, and they have schools and businesses and factories and farms that have results at some level of acceptability—all without having a clue what’s going on inside anybody’s head. Muddling through, that’s what human beings do. that was the part of being human that Bean hated the most.
Orson Scott Card (Shadow of the Hegemon (The Shadow Series, #2))
We’re going to stop this preposterous obsession with economic growth at the cost of all else. Great economic success doesn’t produce national happiness. It produces Republicans and Switzerland. So we’re going to concentrate on just being lovely and pleasant and civilized. We’re going to have the best schools and hospitals, the most comfortable public transportation, the liveliest arts, the most useful and well-stocked libraries, the grandest parks, the cleanest streets, the most enlightened social policies. In short, we’re going to be like Sweden, but with less herring and better jokes.
Bill Bryson (The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes from a Small Island)
At cocktail parties, I played the part of a successful businessman's wife to perfection. I smiled, I made polite chit-chat, and I dressed the part. Denial and rationalization were two of my most effective tools in working my way through our social obligations. I believed that playing the roles of wife and mother were the least I could do to help support Tom's career. During the day, I was a puzzle with innumerable pieces. One piece made my family a nourishing breakfast. Another piece ferried the kids to school and to soccer practice. A third piece managed to trip to the grocery store. There was also a piece that wanted to sleep for eighteen hours a day and the piece that woke up shaking from yet another nightmare. And there was the piece that attended business functions and actually fooled people into thinking I might have something constructive to offer. I was a circus performer traversing the tightwire, and I could fall off into a vortex devoid of reality at any moment. There was, and had been for a very long time, an intense sense of despair. A self-deprecating voice inside told me I had no chance of getting better. I lived in an emotional black hole. p20-21, talking about dissociative identity disorder (formerly multiple personality disorder).
Suzie Burke (Wholeness: My Healing Journey from Ritual Abuse)
We’ve all heard the usual examples: Michael Jordan cut from his high school basketball team, Walt Disney fired by a newspaper editor for not being creative enough, the Beatles turned away by a record executive who told them that “guitar groups are on their way out.” In fact, many of their winning mantras essentially describe the notion of falling up: “I’ve failed over and over again in my life,” Jordan once said, “and that is why I succeed.” Robert F. Kennedy said much the same: “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” And Thomas Edison, too, once claimed that he had failed his way to success.
Shawn Achor (The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work)
Spring had come once more to Green Gables-the beautiful, capricious Canadian spring, lingering along through April and may in a succession of sweet, fresh, chilly days, with pink sunsets and miracles of resurrection and growth. The maples in Lover's Lane were red-budded and little curly ferns pushed up around the Dryad's Bubble. Away in the barrens, behind Mr. Silas Sloane's place, the mayflowers blossomed out, pink and white stars of sweetness under their brown leaves. All the school girls and boys had one golden afternoon gathering them, coming home in the clear, echoing twilight with arms and baskets full of flowery spoil.
L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables (Anne of Green Gables, #1))
Fun is at the core of the way I like to do business and it has been key to everything I've done from the outset. More than any other element, fun is the secret of Virgin's success. I am aware that the ideas of business as being fun and creative goes right against the grain of convention, and it's certainly not how the they teach it at some of those business schools, where business means hard grind and lots of 'discounted cash flows' and net' present values'.
Richard Branson (Losing My Virginity: How I've Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way)
Our culture today confuses great attention with great success, assuming them to be the same thing, but they are not. You are great, already. Whether you realize it or not. Whether anybody else realizes it or not. And it's not because you launched an iPhone app, or finished school a year early, or bought yourself a sweet ass boat. These things do not define greatness. You are already great because in the face of endless confusion and certain death, you continue to choose what to give a fuck about and what not to.
Mark Manson
But mortification - literally, "making death" - is what life is all about, a slow discovery of the mortality of all that is created so that we can appreciate its beauty without clinging to it as if it were a lasting possession. Our lives can indeed be seen as a process of becoming familiar with death, as a school in the art of dying . . . all these times have passed by like friendly visitors, leaving you with dear memories but also with the sad recognition of the shortness of life. In every arrival there is a leave-taking; in every reunion there is a separation; in each one's growing up there is a growing old; in every smile there is a tear; and in every success there is a loss. All living is dying and all celebration is mortification too.
Henri J.M. Nouwen (Show Me the Way: Daily Lenten Readings)
Who hasn't thought about killing themselves, as a kid? How can you grow up in this world and not think about it? It's an option taken by a lot of successful people: Ernest Hemingway, Socrates, Jesus. Even before high school, I thought that it would be a cool thing to do if I ever got really famous. If I kept making my maps, for instance, and some art collector came across them and decided to make them worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, if I killed myself at the height of that, they'd be worth millions of dollars, and I wouldn't be responsible for them anymore. I'd have left behind something that spoke for itself.
Ned Vizzini (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
The greatest threat to a robust, autonomous civil society is the ever-growing Leviathan state and those like Obama who see it as the ultimate expression of the collective. Obama compounds the fallacy by declaring the state to be the font of entrepreneurial success. How so? It created the infrastructure - roads, bridges, schools, Internet - off which we all thrive. Absurd. We don't credit the Swiss postal service with the Special Theory of Relativity because it transmitted Einstein's manuscript to the Annalen der Physik.
Charles Krauthammer (Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes and Politics)
One semester later I did, indeed, graduate with a 4.0. I had done it. And after that, my GPA did . . . Nothing. I never planned on going to graduate school. I wasn’t applying for jobs that used grades as a measurement. I didn’t need that GPA for any single reason other than to SAY I had it and impress people. I could turn this into an argument for “Let’s reward a high GPA after college in LIFE! Can we get priority seating on Southwest? A free monthly refill at Starbucks? SOMETHING to make four years of my life chasing this arbitrary number WORTH it?!” (Great idea. Never gonna happen.) Or I could argue that if I’d been easier on myself and gotten 10 percent worse grades I could have had 50 percent more friendships and fun. If someone’s takeaway from this story is “Felicia Day said don’t study!,” I’ll punch you in the face. But I AM saying don’t chase perfection for perfection’s sake, or for anyone else’s sake at all. If you strive for something, make sure it’s for the right reasons. And if you fail, that will be a better lesson for you than any success you’ll ever have. Because you learn a lot from screwing up. Being perfect . . . not so much.
Felicia Day (You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost))
To summarize what I have said: Aim for the highest; never enter a bar-room; do not touch liquor, or if at all only at meals; never speculate; never indorse beyond your surplus cash fund; make the firm’s interest yours; break orders always to save owners; concentrate; put all your eggs in one basket, and watch that basket; expenditure always within revenue; lastly, be not impatient, for, as Emerson says, “no one can cheat you out of ultimate success but yourselves.” I congratulate poor young men upon being born to that ancient and honourable degree which renders it necessary that they should devote themselves to hard work. A basketful of bonds is the heaviest basket a young man ever had to carry. He generally gets to staggering under it. We have in this city creditable instances of such young men, who have pressed to the front rank of our best and most useful citizens. These deserve great credit. But the vast majority of the sons of rich men are unable to resist the temptations to which wealth subjects them, and sink to unworthy lives. I would almost as soon leave a young man a curse, as burden him with the almighty dollar. It is not from this class you have rivalry to fear. The partner’s sons will not trouble you much, but look out that some boys poorer, much poorer than yourselves, whose parents cannot afford to give them the advantages of a course in this institute, advantages which should give you a decided lead in the race–look out that such boys do not challenge you at the post and pass you at the grand stand. Look out for the boy who has to plunge into work direct from the common school and who begins by sweeping out the office. He is the probable dark horse that you had better watch.
Andrew Carnegie (The Road To Business Success)
There is no more important homework than reading. Research shows that the highest achieving students are those who devote leisure time to reading, even when the school day and year are only mid-length and homework isn’t excessive. Recently, the largest-ever international study of reading found that the single most important predictor of academic success is the amount of time children spend reading books, more important even than economic or social status. And one of the few predictors of high achievement in math and science is the amount of time children devote to pleasure reading.
Nancie Atwell (The Reading Zone: How to Help Kids Become Skilled, Passionate, Habitual, Critical Readers)
These days, many well-meaning school districts bring together teachers, coaches, curriculum supervisors, and a cast of thousands to determine what skills your child needs to be successful. Once these "standards" have been established, pacing plans are then drawn up to make sure that each particular skill is taught at the same rate and in the same way to all children. This is, of course, absurd. It gets even worse when one considers the very real fact that nothing of value is learned permanently by a child in a day or two.
Rafe Esquith (Lighting Their Fires: Raising Extraordinary Children in a Mixed-up, Muddled-up, Shook-up World)
FORKED BRANCHES We grew up on the same street, You and me. We went to the same schools, Rode the same bus, Had the same friends, And even shared spaghetti With each other's families. And though our roots belong to The same tree, Our branches have grown In different directions. Our tree, Now resembles a thousand Other trees In a sea of a trillion Other trees With parallel destinies And similar dreams. You cannot envy the branch That grows bigger From the same seed, And you cannot Blame it on the sun's direction. But you still compare us, As if we're still those two Kids at the park Slurping down slushies and Eating ice cream. Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun (2010)
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
In the United States the legacy of settler colonialism can be seen in the endless wars of aggression and occupations; the trillions spent on war machinery, military bases, and personnel instead of social services and quality public education; the gross profits of corporations, each of which has greater resources and funds than more than half the countries in the world yet pay minimal taxes and provide few jobs for US citizens; the repression of generation after generation of activists who seek to change the system; the incarceration of the poor, particularly descendants of enslaved Africans; the individualism, carefully inculcated, that on the one hand produces self-blame for personal failure and on the other exalts ruthless dog-eat-dog competition for possible success, even though it rarely results; and high rates of suicide, drug abuse, alcoholism, sexual violence against women and children, homelessness, dropping out of school, and gun violence.
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz (An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States (ReVisioning American History, #3))
When he heard that Sanshiro was going to school forty hours a week, his eyes popped. "You idiot! Do you think it would 'satisfy' you to eat what they serve at your rooming house ten times a day?" "What should I do?" Sanshiro pleaded. "Ride the streetcar," Yojiro said. Sanshiro tried to find Yojiro's hidden meaning, without success. "You mean a real streetcar?" he asked. Yojiro laughed uncontrollably. "Get on the streetcar and ride around Tokyo ten or fifteen times. After a while it will just happen by itself- you will become satisfied. "Why?" "Why? Well, look at it this way. Your head is alive, but if you seal it up inside dead classes, you're lost. Take it outside and get the wind into it. Riding the streetcar is not the only way to get satisfaction, of course, but it's the first step, and the easiest.
Natsume Sōseki (Sanshirō)
When the ancient Romans would conquer a new place or a new people, they would leave the language and the customs in tact – they would even let the conquered people rule themselves in most cases, appointing a governor to maintain a foothold in the region.” Wilson leaned against the whiteboard as he spoke, his posture relaxed, his hands clasped loosely.“This was part of what made Rome so successful. They didn't try to make everyone Romans in the process of conquering them. When I went to Africa with the Peace Corp, a woman who worked with the Corp said something to me that I have often thought about since. She told me 'Africa is not going to adapt to you. You are going to have to adapt to Africa.' That is true of wherever you go, whether it's school or whether it's in the broader world.
Amy Harmon (A Different Blue)
They said that you would never make it, but you did. They said that you would quit, but you persevered and fought through every obstacle that came your way. They said that you didn’t have what it takes, but you proved them ALL wrong. Not only do you have success, but you have peace and joy within. You never compromised your character and you tackled everything with dignity. You didn’t allow any challenges to discourage you, because you knew all along that there was a winner in you. You doubted yourself at times, but you didn’t allow anything or anybody to keep you down. You made it! Be proud of your accomplishments! Enjoy all of the benefits from your hard work and dedication!
Stephanie Lahart
Calvin: Today at school, I tried to decide whether to cheat on my test or not. I wondered, is it better to do the right thing and fail ... or is it better to do the wrong thing and succeed? On the one hand, undeserved success gives no satisfaction ... but on the other hand, well-deserved failure gives no satisfaction either. Of course, most everybody cheats some time or other. People always bend the rules if they think they can get away with it. Then again, that doesn't justify my cheating. Then I thought, look, cheating on one little test isn't such a big deal. It doesn't hurt anyone. But then I wondered if I was just rationalizing my unwillingness to accept the consequence of not studying. Still, in the real world, people care about success, not principles. Then again, maybe that's why the world is such a mess. What a dilemma! Hobbes: So what did you decide? Calvin: Nothing. I ran out of time and I had to turn in a blank paper. Hobbes: Anymore, simply acknowledging the issue is a moral victory. Calvin: Well, it just seemed wrong to cheat on an ethics test.
Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes (Calvin and Hobbes, #1))
The fairy tale is accused of giving children a false impression of the world they live in. But I think no literature that children could read gives them less of a false impression. I think what profess to be realistic stories for children are far more likely to deceive them. I never expected the real world to be like the fairy tales. I think that I did expect school to be like the school stories. The fantasies did not deceive me: the school stories did. All stories in which children have adventures and successes which are possible, in the sense that they do not break the laws of nature, but almost infinitely improbable, are in more danger than the fairy tales of raising false expectations… This distinction holds for adult reading too. The dangerous fantasy is always superficially realistic. The real victim of wishful reverie does not batten on the Odyssey, The Tempest, or The Worm Ouroboros: he (or she) prefers stories about millionaires, irresistible beauties, posh hotels, palm beaches and bedroom scenes—things that really might happen, that ought to happen, that would have happened if the reader had had a fair chance. For, as I say, there are two kinds of longing. The one is an askesis, a spiritual exercise, and the other is a disease.
C.S. Lewis (Of Other Worlds: Essays and Stories)
The guiding visionary behind Project Spectrum is Howard Gardner, a psychologist at the Harvard School of Education.7 “The time has come,” Gardner told me, “to broaden our notion of the spectrum of talents. The single most important contribution education can make to a child’s development is to help him toward a field where his talents best suit him, where he will be satisfied and competent. We’ve completely lost sight of that. Instead we subject everyone to an education where, if you succeed, you will be best suited to be a college professor. And we evaluate everyone along the way according to whether they meet that narrow standard of success. We should spend less time ranking children and more time helping them to identify their natural competencies and gifts, and cultivate those. There are hundreds and hundreds of ways to succeed, and many, many different abilities that will help you get there.
Daniel Goleman (Emotional Intelligence)
When young, we’re anxious — understandably — to find out if we’ve got what it takes. Can we succeed? Can we build a viable life for ourselves? But you — in particular you, of this generation — may have noticed a certain cyclical quality to ambition. You do well in high-school, in hopes of getting into a good college, so you can do well in the good college, in the hopes of getting a good job, so you can do well in the good job so you can . . . And this is actually O.K. If we’re going to become kinder, that process has to include taking ourselves seriously — as doers, as accomplishers, as dreamers. We have to do that, to be our best selves. Still, accomplishment is unreliable. “Succeeding,” whatever that might mean to you, is hard, and the need to do so constantly renews itself (success is like a mountain that keeps growing ahead of you as you hike it), and there’s the very real danger that “succeeding” will take up your whole life, while the big questions go untended.
George Saunders (Congratulations, by the Way: Some Thoughts on Kindness)
To learn hard things quickly, you must focus intensely without distraction. To learn, in other words, is an act of deep work. If you’re comfortable going deep, you’ll be comfortable mastering the increasingly complex systems and skills needed to thrive in our economy. If you instead remain one of the many for whom depth is uncomfortable and distraction ubiquitous, you shouldn’t expect these systems and skills to come easily to you. Deep Work Helps You Produce at an Elite Level Adam Grant produces at an elite level. When I met Grant in 2013, he was the youngest professor to be awarded tenure at the Wharton School of Business at Penn. A year later, when I started writing this chapter (and was just beginning to think about my own tenure process), the claim was updated: He’s now the youngest full professor* at Wharton. The reason Grant advanced so quickly in his corner of academia is simple: He produces. In 2012, Grant published seven articles—all of them in major journals. This is an absurdly
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
Ethan’s parents constantly told him how brainy he was. “You’re so smart! You can do anything, Ethan. We are so proud of you, they would say every time he sailed through a math test. Or a spelling test. Or any test. With the best of intentions, they consistently tethered Ethan’s accomplishment to some innate characteristic of his intellectual prowess. Researchers call this “appealing to fixed mindsets.” The parents had no idea that this form of praise was toxic.   Little Ethan quickly learned that any academic achievement that required no effort was the behavior that defined his gift. When he hit junior high school, he ran into subjects that did require effort. He could no longer sail through, and, for the first time, he started making mistakes. But he did not see these errors as opportunities for improvement. After all, he was smart because he could mysteriously grasp things quickly. And if he could no longer grasp things quickly, what did that imply? That he was no longer smart. Since he didn’t know the ingredients making him successful, he didn’t know what to do when he failed. You don’t have to hit that brick wall very often before you get discouraged, then depressed. Quite simply, Ethan quit trying. His grades collapsed. What happens when you say, ‘You’re so smart’   Research shows that Ethan’s unfortunate story is typical of kids regularly praised for some fixed characteristic. If you praise your child this way, three things are statistically likely to happen:   First, your child will begin to perceive mistakes as failures. Because you told her that success was due to some static ability over which she had no control, she will start to think of failure (such as a bad grade) as a static thing, too—now perceived as a lack of ability. Successes are thought of as gifts rather than the governable product of effort.   Second, perhaps as a reaction to the first, she will become more concerned with looking smart than with actually learning something. (Though Ethan was intelligent, he was more preoccupied with breezing through and appearing smart to the people who mattered to him. He developed little regard for learning.)   Third, she will be less willing to confront the reasons behind any deficiencies, less willing to make an effort. Such kids have a difficult time admitting errors. There is simply too much at stake for failure.       What to say instead: ‘You really worked hard’   What should Ethan’s parents have done? Research shows a simple solution. Rather than praising him for being smart, they should have praised him for working hard. On the successful completion of a test, they should not have said,“I’m so proud of you. You’re so smart. They should have said, “I’m so proud of you. You must have really studied hard”. This appeals to controllable effort rather than to unchangeable talent. It’s called “growth mindset” praise.
John Medina (Brain Rules for Baby: How to Raise a Smart and Happy Child from Zero to Five)
THE COUNCIL WAS NOTHING LIKE Jason imagined. For one thing, it was in the Big House rec room, around a Ping-Pong table, and one of the satyrs was serving nachos and sodas. Somebody had brought Seymour the leopard head in from the living room and hung him on the wall. Every once in a while, a counselor would toss him a Snausage. Jason looked around the room and tried to remember everyone’s name. Thankfully, Leo and Piper were sitting next to him—it was their first meeting as senior counselors. Clarisse, leader of the Ares cabin, had her boots on the table, but nobody seemed to care. Clovis from Hypnos cabin was snoring in the corner while Butch from Iris cabin was seeing how many pencils he could fit in Clovis’s nostrils. Travis Stoll from Hermes was holding a lighter under a Ping-Pong ball to see if it would burn, and Will Solace from Apollo was absently wrapping and unwrapping an Ace bandage around his wrist. The counselor from Hecate cabin, Lou Ellen something-or-other, was playing “got-your-nose” with Miranda Gardiner from Demeter, except that Lou Ellen really had magically disconnected Miranda’s nose, and Miranda was trying to get it back. Jason had hoped Thalia would show. She’d promised, after all—but she was nowhere to be seen. Chiron had told him not to worry about it. Thalia often got sidetracked fighting monsters or running quests for Artemis, and she would probably arrive soon. But still, Jason worried. Rachel Dare, the oracle, sat next to Chiron at the head of the table. She was wearing her Clarion Academy school uniform dress, which seemed a bit odd, but she smiled at Jason. Annabeth didn’t look so relaxed. She wore armor over her camp clothes, with her knife at her side and her blond hair pulled back in a ponytail. As soon as Jason walked in, she fixed him with an expectant look, as if she were trying to extract information out of him by sheer willpower. “Let’s come to order,” Chiron said. “Lou Ellen, please give Miranda her nose back. Travis, if you’d kindly extinguish the flaming Ping-Pong ball, and Butch, I think twenty pencils is really too many for any human nostril. Thank you. Now, as you can see, Jason, Piper, and Leo have returned successfully…more or less. Some of you have heard parts of their story, but I will let them fill you in.” Everyone looked at Jason. He cleared his throat and began the story. Piper and Leo chimed in from time to time, filling in the details he forgot. It only took a few minutes, but it seemed like longer with everyone watching him. The silence was heavy, and for so many ADHD demigods to sit still listening for that long, Jason knew the story must have sounded pretty wild. He ended with Hera’s visit right before the meeting.
Rick Riordan (The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, #1))
One of my greatest fears is family decline.There’s an old Chinese saying that “prosperity can never last for three generations.” I’ll bet that if someone with empirical skills conducted a longitudinal survey about intergenerational performance, they’d find a remarkably common pattern among Chinese immigrants fortunate enough to have come to the United States as graduate students or skilled workers over the last fifty years. The pattern would go something like this: • The immigrant generation (like my parents) is the hardest-working. Many will have started off in the United States almost penniless, but they will work nonstop until they become successful engineers, scientists, doctors, academics, or businesspeople. As parents, they will be extremely strict and rabidly thrifty. (“Don’t throw out those leftovers! Why are you using so much dishwasher liquid?You don’t need a beauty salon—I can cut your hair even nicer.”) They will invest in real estate. They will not drink much. Everything they do and earn will go toward their children’s education and future. • The next generation (mine), the first to be born in America, will typically be high-achieving. They will usually play the piano and/or violin.They will attend an Ivy League or Top Ten university. They will tend to be professionals—lawyers, doctors, bankers, television anchors—and surpass their parents in income, but that’s partly because they started off with more money and because their parents invested so much in them. They will be less frugal than their parents. They will enjoy cocktails. If they are female, they will often marry a white person. Whether male or female, they will not be as strict with their children as their parents were with them. • The next generation (Sophia and Lulu’s) is the one I spend nights lying awake worrying about. Because of the hard work of their parents and grandparents, this generation will be born into the great comforts of the upper middle class. Even as children they will own many hardcover books (an almost criminal luxury from the point of view of immigrant parents). They will have wealthy friends who get paid for B-pluses.They may or may not attend private schools, but in either case they will expect expensive, brand-name clothes. Finally and most problematically, they will feel that they have individual rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and therefore be much more likely to disobey their parents and ignore career advice. In short, all factors point to this generation
Amy Chua (Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother)
From a very early age Edison became used to doing things for himself, by necessity. His family was poor, and by the age of twelve he had to earn money to help his parents. He sold newspapers on trains, and traveling around his native Michigan for his job, he developed an ardent curiosity about everything he saw. He wanted to know how things worked—machines, gadgets, anything with moving parts. With no schools or teachers in his life, he turned to books, particularly anything he could find on science. He began to conduct his own experiments in the basement of his family home, and he taught himself how to take apart and fix any kind of watch. At the age of fifteen he apprenticed as a telegraph operator, then spent years traveling across the country plying his trade. He had no chance for a formal education, and nobody crossed his path who could serve as a teacher or mentor. And so in lieu of that, in every city he spent time in, he frequented the public library. One book that crossed his path played a decisive role in his life: Michael Faraday’s two-volume Experimental Researches in Electricity. This book became for Edison what The Improvement of the Mind had been for Faraday. It gave him a systematic approach to science and a program for how to educate himself in the field that now obsessed him—electricity. He could follow the experiments laid out by the great Master of the field and absorb as well his philosophical approach to science. For the rest of his life, Faraday would remain his role model. Through books, experiments, and practical experience at various jobs, Edison gave himself a rigorous education that lasted about ten years, up until the time he became an inventor. What made this successful was his relentless desire to learn through whatever crossed his path, as well as his self-discipline. He had developed the habit of overcoming his lack of an organized education by sheer determination and persistence. He worked harder than anyone else. Because he was a consummate outsider and his mind had not been indoctrinated in any school of thought, he brought a fresh perspective to every problem he tackled. He turned his lack of formal direction into an advantage. If you are forced onto this path, you must follow Edison’s example by developing extreme self-reliance. Under these circumstances, you become your own teacher and mentor. You push yourself to learn from every possible source. You read more books than those who have a formal education, developing this into a lifelong habit. As much as possible, you try to apply your knowledge in some form of experiment or practice. You find for yourself second-degree mentors in the form of public figures who can serve as role models. Reading and reflecting on their experiences, you can gain some guidance. You try to make their ideas come to life, internalizing their voice. As someone self-taught, you will maintain a pristine vision, completely distilled through your own experiences—giving you a distinctive power and path to mastery.
Robert Greene (Mastery (The Modern Machiavellian Robert Greene Book 1))
New Rule: Americans must realize what makes NFL football so great: socialism. That's right, the NFL takes money from the rich teams and gives it to the poorer one...just like President Obama wants to do with his secret army of ACORN volunteers. Green Bay, Wisconsin, has a population of one hundred thousand. Yet this sleepy little town on the banks of the Fuck-if-I-know River has just as much of a chance of making it to the Super Bowl as the New York Jets--who next year need to just shut the hell up and play. Now, me personally, I haven't watched a Super Bowl since 2004, when Janet Jackson's nipple popped out during halftime. and that split-second glimpse of an unrestrained black titty burned by eyes and offended me as a Christian. But I get it--who doesn't love the spectacle of juiced-up millionaires giving one another brain damage on a giant flatscreen TV with a picture so real it feels like Ben Roethlisberger is in your living room, grabbing your sister? It's no surprise that some one hundred million Americans will watch the Super Bowl--that's forty million more than go to church on Christmas--suck on that, Jesus! It's also eighty-five million more than watched the last game of the World Series, and in that is an economic lesson for America. Because football is built on an economic model of fairness and opportunity, and baseball is built on a model where the rich almost always win and the poor usually have no chance. The World Series is like The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. You have to be a rich bitch just to play. The Super Bowl is like Tila Tequila. Anyone can get in. Or to put it another way, football is more like the Democratic philosophy. Democrats don't want to eliminate capitalism or competition, but they'd like it if some kids didn't have to go to a crummy school in a rotten neighborhood while others get to go to a great school and their dad gets them into Harvard. Because when that happens, "achieving the American dream" is easy for some and just a fantasy for others. That's why the NFL literally shares the wealth--TV is their biggest source of revenue, and they put all of it in a big commie pot and split it thirty-two ways. Because they don't want anyone to fall too far behind. That's why the team that wins the Super Bowl picks last in the next draft. Or what the Republicans would call "punishing success." Baseball, on the other hand, is exactly like the Republicans, and I don't just mean it's incredibly boring. I mean their economic theory is every man for himself. The small-market Pittsburgh Steelers go to the Super Bowl more than anybody--but the Pittsburgh Pirates? Levi Johnston has sperm that will not grow and live long enough to see the Pirates in a World Series. Their payroll is $40 million; the Yankees' is $206 million. The Pirates have about as much chance as getting in the playoffs as a poor black teenager from Newark has of becoming the CEO of Halliburton. So you kind of have to laugh--the same angry white males who hate Obama because he's "redistributing wealth" just love football, a sport that succeeds economically because it does just that. To them, the NFL is as American as hot dogs, Chevrolet, apple pie, and a second, giant helping of apple pie.
Bill Maher (The New New Rules: A Funny Look At How Everybody But Me Has Their Head Up Their Ass)
Antidepression medication is temperamental. Somewhere around fifty-nine or sixty I noticed the drug I’d been taking seemed to have stopped working. This is not unusual. The drugs interact with your body chemistry in different ways over time and often need to be tweaked. After the death of Dr. Myers, my therapist of twenty-five years, I’d been seeing a new doctor whom I’d been having great success with. Together we decided to stop the medication I’d been on for five years and see what would happen... DEATH TO MY HOMETOWN!! I nose-dived like the diving horse at the old Atlantic City steel pier into a sloshing tub of grief and tears the likes of which I’d never experienced before. Even when this happens to me, not wanting to look too needy, I can be pretty good at hiding the severity of my feelings from most of the folks around me, even my doctor. I was succeeding well with this for a while except for one strange thing: TEARS! Buckets of ’em, oceans of ’em, cold, black tears pouring down my face like tidewater rushing over Niagara during any and all hours of the day. What was this about? It was like somebody opened the floodgates and ran off with the key. There was NO stopping it. 'Bambi' tears... 'Old Yeller' tears... 'Fried Green Tomatoes' tears... rain... tears... sun... tears... I can’t find my keys... tears. Every mundane daily event, any bump in the sentimental road, became a cause to let it all hang out. It would’ve been funny except it wasn’t. Every meaningless thing became the subject of a world-shattering existential crisis filling me with an awful profound foreboding and sadness. All was lost. All... everything... the future was grim... and the only thing that would lift the burden was one-hundred-plus on two wheels or other distressing things. I would be reckless with myself. Extreme physical exertion was the order of the day and one of the few things that helped. I hit the weights harder than ever and paddleboarded the equivalent of the Atlantic, all for a few moments of respite. I would do anything to get Churchill’s black dog’s teeth out of my ass. Through much of this I wasn’t touring. I’d taken off the last year and a half of my youngest son’s high school years to stay close to family and home. It worked and we became closer than ever. But that meant my trustiest form of self-medication, touring, was not at hand. I remember one September day paddleboarding from Sea Bright to Long Branch and back in choppy Atlantic seas. I called Jon and said, “Mr. Landau, book me anywhere, please.” I then of course broke down in tears. Whaaaaaaaaaa. I’m surprised they didn’t hear me in lower Manhattan. A kindly elderly woman walking her dog along the beach on this beautiful fall day saw my distress and came up to see if there was anything she could do. Whaaaaaaaaaa. How kind. I offered her tickets to the show. I’d seen this symptom before in my father after he had a stroke. He’d often mist up. The old man was usually as cool as Robert Mitchum his whole life, so his crying was something I loved and welcomed. He’d cry when I’d arrive. He’d cry when I left. He’d cry when I mentioned our old dog. I thought, “Now it’s me.” I told my doc I could not live like this. I earned my living doing shows, giving interviews and being closely observed. And as soon as someone said “Clarence,” it was going to be all over. So, wisely, off to the psychopharmacologist he sent me. Patti and I walked in and met a vibrant, white-haired, welcoming but professional gentleman in his sixties or so. I sat down and of course, I broke into tears. I motioned to him with my hand; this is it. This is why I’m here. I can’t stop crying! He looked at me and said, “We can fix this.” Three days and a pill later the waterworks stopped, on a dime. Unbelievable. I returned to myself. I no longer needed to paddle, pump, play or challenge fate. I didn’t need to tour. I felt normal.
Bruce Springsteen (Born to Run)