Words to live by: our favorite quotes.

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They’re scrawled on restroom walls, brimming with gritty wisdom. Etched on rings, on lockets, in hearts. Scrawled in diaries that reflect our journeys.

Favorite words, phrases and other sayings find their way into our days. I once read that actress Sarah Jessica Parker used the word “grace” as a password, to remind her of this essential element. Here’s some of mine:

People come into our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime.”  – Author unknown. Not every player in our lives will be a permanent cast member. Sometimes they cross paths, play their role, and bow out.

I don’t trust anyone who doesn’t laugh.” – Maya Angelou. So true!

Success is not final, and failure is not fatal.” – Churchill.  Enjoy our successes, to be sure, but this nudges us not to get complacent.  And it reminds us that growth (and fun!) comes from trying something new, even when we crash and burn the first time.

A Savvy Girl always have a few words up her sleeve to sustain her, amuse her, or to lend perspective. What favorite phrases or quotes resonate for you?


    • Alicia Young says

      Cloris, I love that saying! It packs so much perspective into one sentence. Thanks for the reminder, and for visiting these pages – I’m thrilled to see you here!

  1. says

    ““People come into our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime.” – Author unknown. Not every player in our lives will be a permanent cast member. Sometimes they cross paths, play their role, and bow out.”

    ^^^Ha! Just met you waiting at the post office, and I can attest you are both savvy and full of personal grace. DD is getting a copy of your book for her birthday!

    • Alicia Young says

      Mirka! I was just telling my husband about you, and here you pop up! You have made my day. Thanks so much for dropping by my site and for your support of Savvy Girl. I enjoyed chatting with you, and it transformed the tedium of waiting in line.

      Fellow Savvy Girls: check our Mirka’s site at http://www.mirkabreen.com
      You’ll find engaging, entertaining writing – and with Thanksgiving around the corner, a fabulous children’s book called There’s a Turkey at the Door. Vegetarian families will delight in it, and its story and message of acceptance will resonate across the board.


  2. says

    The whole poem Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou is my favorite “quote” 🙂 I know I’m cheating. I also love the quote by Marianne Williamson:
    “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” (There is more)

    • Alicia Young says

      Hey KK! Always lovely to see your name pop up, thanks for sharing these!
      Yes, you’re cheating a little – but in style! :;) I love Maya Angelou. Wanted to quote her in my book, but ended up going mostly with pre-1923 quotes which are copyright free.

      The Williamson quote made me sit up. Women are sometimes (often?) uncomfortable with acknowledging our power, let alone owning it. But hey, if we use it for good, not evil…

      Thanks again,

  3. M. says

    Two quotes for you, Alicia, from my file-o’-many-quotes:

    “Le coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connaît point” / The heart has reasons that reason knows not of.
    (I quote this all the time!)

    And an inspiring quote, for those of us involved in creative endeavors:

    “What nobody tells people who are beginners — and I really wish someone had told this to me… is that all of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, and it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase. They quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know it’s normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take a while. It’s normal to take a while. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”
    —Ira Glass

    • Alicia Young says

      Thanks for these, M.! I like both – the Pascal quote is beautiful in its simplicity and its power.
      The Ira Glass resonates for very different reasons. It captures the struggle we have in creating something, and its elements and observations apply far beyond art in general or writing in particular. I enjoyed reading it!

  4. Aurora says

    Like a lot of people I have endured some hard times in my life and friend always reminded me of the following: “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” . Somehow, someway, you always get through and upon reflection you are a stronger person for having dealt with the situation.


    • Alicia Young says

      Hello Aurora, this simple saying holds many layers. As challenging are our trouble can be, we emerge stronger for having navigated them. We always learn something about ourselves in the process, far beyond solving the problem at hand.
      Thanks for sharing this.

  5. Rachael Donna says

    I have two quotes that I think of quite a lot-

    “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to try one last time.”
    -Thomas Edison


    “The distance is nothing; it is only the first step that is difficult.”
    -Mme. Du Deffand

    Personally, I like the second one the most. 🙂

    • Alicia Young says

      Great quotes, Rachael! The Edison one is oft-quoted, and with good reason – it’s so applicable to so much in life.
      And the second speaks beautifully to getting a task, or a journey started.
      I’ll be keeping both in mind!
      Thanks for sharing these,

  6. Terry Ann says

    I enjoy quotes so much that I have two notebooks full of my favorites.
    “The best way out is always through.” – Robert Frost

    • Alicia Young says

      Hey Terry Ann,
      I love that you collect quotes, too. The one you mention reminds me a bit of a Churchill one:
      When you’re going through Hell – keep going.
      All wise words!
      Thanks for your input,

  7. Tania says

    Definition of insanity: to do the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result (Einstien)

    To do nothing is to fail (don’t know who said it but makes sense to me!)

    • Alicia Young says

      So true, Tania – on both counts! I see the first one in me, and around me.
      The second resonates even more… I feel like the fear of failure abounds in almost endemic proportions today – when in fact, as you allude, the real growth is in trying. Whether we succeed – or crash and burn on our first attempt with something new, counts far less than trying.
      I wonder if part of it is because we live in a time of over-documenting our lives; someone is always ready to pounce’n’post post what we do,say, or try – so it could add pressure.

    • Alicia Young says

      Beautiful! Thanks, Charmaine. This cuts to the core of how we approach life, infusing how we reflect on, and digest, what it delivers.
      It makes me smile.

  8. Grace Conti says

    Good art makes the comfortable uncomfortable and the uncomfortable comfortable

    I don’t know who said this, and I believe this is an extension of the original; however, having attended my friend’s art exhibition last night, I fully embrace this saying. When I first saw his work many years ago, and life felt like it was cruising along, I found his work disturbing. Now, that I am undergoing some of life’s bigger lessons, I found his art comforting. It’s not his art that has changed, but its effect on me.

    • Alicia Young says

      Hello Grace, these words made me sit up. Truth be known, there’s a lot of art I simply glance at, and therefore digest only superficially. You struck a note in how it resonates for us in different ways, at different times in our life. I’ll keep it in mind.
      Thanks for sharing this,

    • Alicia Young says

      Great quote, Jason. It reminds me of the Walt Whitman line:
      You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.
      …though yours distills its beautifully into a few words.
      Thanks, Savvy Guy!

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