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Angie #937164 11/08/22 12:26 PM
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Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.

Anaïs Nin

This insightful observation springs from the diaries of Anaïs Nin, a French-born Cuban American writer whose deeply personal, often erotic writing certainly required a healthy dose of courage. In the June 1941 entry where she wrote these words, she reflects on two different kinds of bravery: the ability to be emotionally open and feel deeply for others, and the courage to hope for a better world amid the horrors of war. But her words ring true in any life circumstances. If you’re willing to face what scares you, it will broaden your world. Those risks are not easy to take, but the reward is a fuller, richer, and more vibrant life.

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Angie #937174 11/10/22 08:13 AM
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It's kind of fun to do the impossible.

Walt Disney

Walt Disney is one of the most iconic entertainment figures of the 20th century, but his career got off to a rocky start. At age 22, Disney was fired from his first job as a newspaper cartoonist because, according to his editor, he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” Needless to say, Disney didn’t let that stop him. Just a few years after being fired and declaring bankruptcy for the first iteration of his own animation company, he went on to create Walt Disney Animation Studios, a wildly successful venture that would birth a trove of instantly classic films, a global theme park empire, and a galaxy of world-famous animated characters, including Mickey Mouse. With hard work and perseverance, Disney made what others saw as impossible into a reality. As his story shows, the journey to do “the impossible” can yield something magical, and can be surprisingly fun along the way.

Angie #937181 11/11/22 08:11 PM
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Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.

John F. Kennedy

As the 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy achieved a high standard of greatness during his short life. He graduated from Harvard University and served his country in both the U.S. Navy and Congress before his stint as President. In his time in office, he established the Peace Corps and Equal Pay Act, proposed the Civil Rights Act, and inspired the nation with his pledge to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. Only someone willing to take huge risks can pull off such a lofty level of achievement. According to JFK, the only way to reach greatness is to be ready to fail just as spectacularly.

Angie #937183 11/12/22 08:41 AM
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A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.

Kurt Vonnegut

During a career that spanned half a century, Kurt Vonnegut published 14 novels and three short-story collections. His work was satirical and his humor was often dark. Vonnegut did not see the world through rose-colored glasses, but neither was he pessimistic or fatalistic. He was, fundamentally, a humanist — and, like fellow writer Isaac Asimov, an honorary president of the American Humanist Association. This quote, from Vonnegut’s novel “Sirens of Titan,” is spoken by the character Constant, who has finally realized that love is, indeed, a fundamental purpose of human life. It’s an idea often expressed by Vonnegut himself. As he wrote in his novel “Cat’s Cradle,” “There is love enough in this world for everybody, if people will just look.”

Angie #937189 11/13/22 08:27 AM
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To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.

Thomas Edison

At the time of his death in 1931, Thomas Edison held (or shared ownership of) 1,093 patents. He lived his life tinkering, inventing out of necessity to solve problems he perceived in the world around him, and often dropping everything to start a new project when an opportunity presented itself. He’s famous for his positive outlook on life — never asking if something could be done, but instead jumping directly to the question of how.

Angie #937194 11/14/22 05:49 PM
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Love comes… when you dare to reveal yourself fully. When you dare to be vulnerable.

Joyce Brothers

We’re often told that love comes when we least expect it, but the truth is, love comes when we are completely open. As humans, we crave more than anything to be fully known and loved for who we are, but if we conceal the imperfect parts of ourselves or keep our guard up for fear of getting hurt, we can never be wholly understood by the people in our lives. True emotional vulnerability is one of the most difficult things to achieve in life, but if we’re willing to take the risk, we’re rewarded with love, community, and the joy of finding kindred spirits in the world.

Angie #937197 11/15/22 03:32 PM
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The best way out is always through.

Robert Frost

"North of Boston," a collection of 17 poems by American poet Robert Frost, was originally published in 1914. One of those is “A Servant of Servants,” the poem where this hopeful line comes from. The lengthy poem spans 177 un-rhyming lines from the perspective of a rural housewife harried by the cooking and cleaning and caretaking of her daily life. She’s thrilled to be talking to someone new, a person camping out in the wilds near her home. And she envies his experience — a chance to connect with nature, to rest, and to recharge. She has no intention of joining this adventurer or setting out on her own to embrace the outdoors. But she has hope: She will power through and continue to care for her family and the house and the people who work her land. And, for her, for now, that hope and that stubborn determination is enough.

Angie #937200 11/16/22 01:56 PM
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I believe great people do things before they are ready.

Amy Poehler

With these words from her 2014 memoir “Yes Please,” comedian and Emmy Award-winning actress Amy Poehler encourages us to take on challenges, even when they feel daunting. Poehler — who co-founded the influential Upright Citizens Brigade before moving on to “Saturday Night Live” and later starring in NBC’s beloved sitcom “Parks and Recreation” — is certainly qualified to give advice about ambition. She goes on to suggest that “doing what you're afraid of, getting out of your comfort zone, taking risks like that — that's what life is.”

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If you hear a voice within you saying, “You are not a painter,” then by all means paint, boy, and that voice will be silenced.

Vincent van Gogh

At the age of 16, in 1869, Vincent van Gogh left his home in the Netherlands to work with his uncle, an art dealer who was traveling between London and Paris. The work gave him access to some of the greatest artists of his time, but Van Gogh himself didn’t begin creating art until 1880, just 10 years before his death. In that time he created over 800 paintings and 700 drawings, establishing a unique style that would, posthumously, make him a household name. Though he only sold one piece of work in his life, he is widely considered one of the greatest painters of the 19th century.

Angie #937213 11/18/22 06:02 PM
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Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.

Rick Warren

This quote is from pastor and author Rick Warren’s 2002 book “The Purpose Driven Life.” Variations of the quote, however, have appeared in many other sources — and no wonder, as it’s a resonant message. There’s a misperception that to be humble means you shouldn’t regard yourself highly. But to practice true humility requires a shift in perspective, to put others first.

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