30 quotes that shaped me in 2020

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Early 2020, I started a habit of noting down quotes from books, articles, podcasts that resonated with me in my Evernote.

Occasionally I revisit them as a reminder, especially when I feel lost and overwhelmed.

Although they touch on very different aspects of life, the principles behind them cuts across.

Some carry attributions, some are missing or I just can’t figure out. I may have even misattributed some of them.

Nonetheless, that do not dilute the value of these quotes in anyway.

I like to share them with you and hopefully some will resonate with you too.

  1. Too often, in all our efforts to be good teachers, all we transmit is our anxiety, uncertainty and fear of failure

  2. Retirement is not 65 years old in a nursing home getting a cheque. Retirement is you stop sacrificing today for the imaginary tomorrow.

  3. There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in. – Desmond Tutu

  4. The roots of knowledge are bitter, but its fruits are sweet.

  5. There are two great addictions – heroin and a monthly salary

  6. Maturity is the ability to reject good alternatives in order to pursue even better ones.

  7. Trying to find lasting happiness from relationships or possessions is like drinking salt water to quench your thirst – Dzigar Kongtrul

  8. There’s nothing better to prompt learning than pain and necessity.

  9. Everyone has two lives – the second starts when you realised you only have one.

  10. A sick man only wants one thing, a healthy man wants 10,000 things – Confucius

  11. Every time I meet a prostitute, she wants to talk about God. And every time I meet a priest, he wants to talk about sex. – Osho

  12. Happiness without material comfort is playing life on hard mode – Naval Ravikant

  13. Fancy academic degrees weren’t going to automatically lead me to fulfilling work – Michelle Obama

  14. I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it – George Bernard Shaw

  15. Travel light. You hardly ever go away and say, ‘I wish I’d packed more.’ It’s usually the other way round – Martina Navratilova

  16. A punishment that’s delayed can still be imposed, but once imposed, it can’t be withdrawn. – Seneca

  17. Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you. – Anne Lamott

  18. A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing. – Oscar Wilde

  19. The worst thing that can happen to a person is to become so desperate that you decide to sell your soul to the devil only to discover that he isn’t buying!

  20. The best way to predict the future is to create it. – Abraham Lincoln

  21. The road to nowhere is paved with excuses. – Mark Bell

  22. There are two kinds of sufferings: the suffering the leads to more suffering and the suffering that leads to the end of suffering. If you are not willing to face the second kind of suffering, you will surely continue to experience the first. – Achaan Chah

  23. You have no responsibility to live up to what other people think you ought to accomplish. I have no responsibility to be like they expect me to be. It’s their mistake, not my failing. – Richard Feynman

  24. It takes skill to strive ahead with confidence. But it takes character to continue on without it. – Scott Yang

  25. The greatness of a nation is measured by how we treat the weakest and the poorest among us – Chee Soon Juan

  26. It is not who gets there first. It’s who gets there first when the market is ready.

  27. People will do anything for those who: Encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions, And help throw rocks at their enemies. – Blair Warren

  28. There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentleman.

  29. We often avoid taking action because we think “I need to learn more,” but the best way to learn is often by taking action. – James Clear

  30. There are two red flags to avoid almost all dangerous people: 1. The perpetually aggrieved; 2. The angry. 

Are there any quotes that have an impact on your life? Please share them in the comments below.

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