Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American poet, philosopher, and essayist during the 19th century. He displayed many unique ideas and values and was known for challenging traditional thoughts.
Here are 61 Thought-Provoking Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes:
1. “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
2. “Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
3. “Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself. Go forward and make your dreams come true.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
4. “Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
5. “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
6. “Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
7. “The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
8. “For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
9. “Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful; for beauty is God’s handwriting… Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair sky, in every fair flower, and thank God for it as a cup of blessing.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
10. “Treat a man as he is, and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he could be, and he will become what he should be.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
11. “Every man I meet is my superior in some way, and in that I learn from him.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
12. “Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
13. “The only way to have a friend is to be one.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
14. “Love, and you shall be loved.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
15. “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
16. “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
17. “Shallow men believe in luck or in circumstance. Strong men believe in cause and effect.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
18. “Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
19. “Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense. This day is all that is good and fair. It is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on yesterdays.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
20th Ralph Waldo Emerson Quote – “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
21. “Always do what you are afraid to do.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
22. “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
23. “When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
24. “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
25. “I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
26. “Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires some of the same courage that a soldier needs. Peace has its victories, but it takes brave men and women to win them.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
27. “Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself. Go forward and make your dreams come true.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
28. “It is not the length of life, but the depth.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
29. “It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
30. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
31. “Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
32. “Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
33. “Make the most of yourself….for that is all there is of you.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
34. “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
35. “If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
36. “Don’t be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
37. “You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
38. “Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
39. “Shallow men believe in luck or in circumstance. Strong men believe in cause and effect.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
40th Ralph Waldo Emerson Quote – “Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
41. “Every artist was first an amateur.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
42. “People do not seem to realise that their opinion of the world is also a confession of their character.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
43. “You become what you think about all day long.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
44. “Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting some on yourself.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
45. “It is easy to live for others, everybody does. I call on you to live for yourself.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
46. “The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
47. “Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
48. “The good news is that the moment you decide that what you know is more important than what you have been taught to believe, you will have shifted gears in your quest for abundance. Success comes from within, not from without.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
49. “In my walks, every man I meet is my superior in some way, and in that I learn from him.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
50. “Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
51. “People only see what they are prepared to see.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
52. “Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
53. “Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
54. “Common sense is genius dressed in its working clothes.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
55. “Beware what you set your heart upon. For it surely shall be yours.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
56. “We are students of words: we are shut up in schools, and colleges, and recitation -rooms, for ten or fifteen years, and come out at last with a bag of wind, a memory of words, and do not know a thing.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
57. “It is one of the beautiful compensations of life that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
58. “Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
59. “To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children, to leave the world a better place, to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
60. “Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
61. “In order for one to learn the important lessons of life, one must first overcome a fear each day.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
What’s your favorite Ralph Waldo Emerson Quote? Share your favorite quote in the comment section below.
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6 Inspiring Quotes From Lucille Ball That Will Motivate You to Stand Out and Reach for the Stars
The original “Queen of Comedy” Lucille “Lucy” Ball, continues to be an icon of fiery sass and humor for every generation. Her timeless comedic talent still sets the standard for those desiring to follow in her celebrated entertainment footsteps.
Here are six inspiring quotes from her that will motivate you to stand out from the crowd and never give up on your dreams:
1. “One of the things I learned the hard way, was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.”
In business and our personal lives, we are bombarded daily by outward criticism and inward self-doubt. In order to realise the success we strive for and attain the goals we hope to achieve, it’s important to practice a strong positive outlook.
Although Ball was known for being an inherently shy girl, when she was 15 years old, she convinced her mom to allow her to attend New York Drama School. The administrator of the school, unable to see the talent hidden behind the shyness, wrote to her mother telling her not to “waste her money and the school’s time with this shy, awkward young lady.”
Refusing to be deterred by the shortsighted criticism, Ball dug in her heels, overcame her shyness, and went on to become the talented comedic actress and icon we know and love today. Just imagine how unfortunate it would have been if she had taken the negative criticism to heart and decided to give up her passion.
2. “Luck? I don’t know anything about luck. I’ve never banked on it and I’m afraid of people who do. Luck to me is something else: Hard work—and realising what is opportunity and what isn’t.”
Today, we are very much conditioned to expect instant gratification in all areas of life. It’s important to remember, however, that true personal and professional success is achieved through tenacity and hard work. Very seldom does “luck” play a substantial role in building a solid and promising future.
Few people may realise that beyond the laughter and crazy shenanigans that Ball is so well known for, she was a trailblazing businesswoman who mapped out her professional path and keenly took advantage of opportunities that came her way.
Behind the scenes, she was co-creator, owner, and partner of Desilu Productions with her husband, Desi Arnaz. I Love Lucy was the first real sitcom developed by a husband and wife team, and under Desilu Studios, the show pioneered the multi-camera shot and filmed in front of a live audience—something no one else was doing at the time.
Being a female owner of a film production company in the 1960s was unprecedented. But, Ball didn’t stop there. Instead, she would eventually buy out Desi and become the first female CEO of a major television and movie production company. Her hard work and perseverance created a legacy to last for generations.
3. “I’d rather regret the things I have done than the things that I haven’t.”
Regrets are a fact of life both personally and professionally. However, most of us would probably admit that we learned some valuable things about ourselves from past mistakes and mishaps. Most would agree that our biggest regrets are related to the opportunities and experiences that we didn’t seize when we had the chance.
Ball’s career in the entertainment world was full of various ups and downs that included many B movies and lackluster performances. However, she continued to forge ahead learning from each and every experience. She was forty years old when she finally hit her stride and began her journey with I Love Lucy. Ball didn’t let the fact that Hollywood considered her to be “old” to stop her from fulfilling her dreams.
Instead of letting the long road of disappointments and closed doors discourage her, Ball refused to give up and found a way to create her own destiny and achieve the success that she had worked so hard for.
4. “I dyed my hair this crazy red to bid for attention. It has become a trademark, and I’ve got to keep it this way.”
We live in a culture where most of us just want to fit in. There is a pressure to conform to a set of expectations in both our professional and personal lives. However, it’s often when we take a risk to set ourselves apart, that doors of opportunities and experiences open for us.
For example, Ball’s natural hair colour was a light to medium brown with reddish tones. Early in her career, she bleached it blonde in hopes of being able to compete with the plethora of bombshell blondes of the era. She eventually realised, however, she needed to stand out, not blend in!
In a past interview, Ball is quoted stating, “Not being a beauty, I hated any part in a picture which depended on beauty. I resented work where looks were that important. There are so many glamour girls that I felt it was silly for me to try to compete with them.”
Dyeing her natural brown hair the colour red was one of the greatest risks Ball took early in her career, but it became one of the late comedian’s most beautiful physical features that helped her stand out and succeed in Hollywood. She shared, “I had to learn to concentrate on developing my personality—to have an individual approach. The way you feel about yourself has a lot to do with the impression you make.”
5. “The more things you do, the more you can do.”
We should never stop striving to learn new skills and grow in knowledge. Taking the steps to constantly evolve in our understanding of our professional and personal life—as well as the world around us—helps build a firm foundation for our present and future.
Ball was a true pioneer for the women of her time. She was not afraid to tackle new things or learn more about the production and business side of her career even though she was encroaching on a man’s world at the time. She knew that any knowledge she gained about the entertainment business would help ensure her future success.
For example, behind the scenes, Ball was an integral part of the business operations of Desilu Productions. She was one of the final voices in all decisions made regarding the show and the production company. And it didn’t stop there. In front of the camera, she portrayed a determined woman diligently trying to work outside of the home in various careers while still tackling the responsibilities of being a housewife and a mother. To put it simply, she just wasn’t scared to try something new.
It’s important to not let fear of failure, or the unknown, deter us from taking chances to break the mould and step out of our comfort zone. The possibilities for growth, success, and achievement are endless.
6. “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”
It’s quite profound how much we can learn from the fortitude and spunk exuded from Lucille Ball, the “Queen of Comedy.” As we’ve seen through these quotes, Ball refused to let others dictate who she would become or what she would achieve. Instead, she had a firm grasp on her own self-worth and was determined to forge ahead to fulfill her dreams.
She demonstrated that self-confidence and inner strength are vital to professional and personal success—a lesson that we would all be wise to remember.
Which one of the above Lucille Ball quotes was your favorite and why? Share your thoughts with us below!
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