self  -  individuality

There is only one you for all time.
Fearlessly be yourself.


Be yourself.  Above all, let who you are, what you are, what you believe, shine through every sentence you write, every piece you finish.

John Jakes


If you teach people to keep their eyes upon what others think of them, unthinkingly to lead the lives and hold the principles of the majority of their contemporaries, you must discredit in their own eyes the authoritative voices of their own souls.  They may be docile citizens; they will never be men and women.  It is ours, on the other hand, to disregard this babble and chattering of other people better and worse than we are, and to walk straight before us by what light we have.  They may be right; but so, before heaven, are we.  They may know; but we know also, and by that knowledge we must stand or fall.  There is such a thing as loyalty to one's own better self; and from those who have not that, how am I to look for loyalty to others?

Robert Louis Stevenson


All my life I had been looking for something, and everywhere I turned someone tried to tell me what it was. I accepted their answers too, though they were often in contradiction and even self-contradictory. I was nave. I was looking for myself and asking everyone except myself questions which I, and only I, could answer. It took me a long time and much painful boomeranging of my expectations to achieve a realization everyone else appears to have been born with:  that I am nobody but myself.

Ralph Ellison


Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.

Judy Garland


By being yourself, you put something wonderful
in the world that was not there before.

Edwin Elliot


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Our entire life consists ultimately in accepting ourselves as we are.

Jean Anouilh


What another would have done as well as you, do not
do it.  What another would have said as well as you,
do not say it; what another would have written as well,
do not write it.  Be faithful to that which exists nowhere
but in yourself--and thus make yourself indispensable.

Andre Gide


Few are those who see with their own eyes
and feel with their own hearts.

Albert Einstein

If you're able to be yourself, then you have no competition.
All you have to do is get closer and closer to that essence.

Barbara Cook

self  -  individuality

To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.

Baruch Spinoza

Defining myself, as opposed to being defined by others,
is one of the most difficult challenges I face.

Carol Mosely-Braun

Accept everything about yourself--I mean everything.
You are you and that is the beginning
and the end--no apologies, no regrets.

Clark Moustakas

I was once afraid of people saying, Who does she think she is?  Now I have the courage to stand and say, This is who I am.

Oprah Winfrey

I have a basic philosophy that I've tried to follow during
my coaching career.  Whether you're winning or losing,
it's important to always be yourself.  You can't change
because of the circumstances around you.

Cotton Fitzsimmons

To be nobody-but-yourself--in a world which is doing its best,
night and day, to make you everybody else--means
to fight the hardest battle which any human being
can fight; and never stop fighting.

e.e. cummings


Why not be oneself?  That is the whole secret of a successful
appearance.  If one is a greyhound why try to look like a Pekinese?

Edith Sitwell


You have a masterpiece inside you, you know.  One unlike
any that has ever been created, or ever will be.  If you
go to your grave without painting your masterpiece, it
will not get painted.  No one else can paint it.  Only you.

Gordon MacKenzie


Josh Billings said, It is not only the most difficult thing to know
oneself, but the most inconvenient one, too.  Human beings
have always employed an enormous variety of clever devices
for running away from themselves, and the modern world
is particularly rich in such stratagems.

John W. Gardner

One does not "find oneself" by pursuing one's self, but on
the contrary by pursuing something else and learning through
discipline or routine. . . who one is and wants to be.

May Sarton

Sometimes we exclude things in ourselves in order to be like everybody else
around us--our ethnicity, our social backgrounds, our ideas.  What kind of
world is it that will not allow me to be myself, and is it really good for me to
be there?  What part of me will die a slow death if I stay?

Joan Chittister
Seeing with Our Souls



If you can't be a pine on the top of the hill,
  Be a scrub in the valley--but be
The best little scrub by the side of the rill;
  Be a bush, if you can't be a tree.

If you can't be a bush, be a bit of the grass,
  And some highway happier make;
If you can't be a muskie, then just be a bass--
  But the liveliest bass in the lake!

We can't all be captains, we've got to be crew,
  There's something for all of us here.
There's big work to do and there's lesser to do
  And the task we must do is the near.

If you can't be a highway, then just be a trail,
  If you can't be the sun, be a star;
It isn't by size that you win or you fail--
  Be the best of whatever you are!

Douglas Malloch
There are many who are living far below their possibilities
because they are continually handing over their individualities
to others.  Do you want to be a power in the world?
Then be yourself.

Ralph Waldo Trine

When I was a child, my mother said to me, "If you become a soldier,
you'll be a general.  If you become a monk you'll end up as the
pope."  Instead I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.

Pablo Picasso


You are something new in this world.  Be glad of it.  Make the most of
what nature gave you.  In the last analysis, all art is autobiographical.
You can sing only what you are.  You can paint only what you are.  You
must be what your experiences, your environment, and your heredity
have made you.  For better or for worse, you must cultivate your own
little garden.  For better or for worse, you must play your own
little instrument in the orchestra of life.

Dale Carnegie
How to Stop Worrying and Start Living


We have some inspiring and motivational books that may interest you.  Our main way of supporting this site is through the sale of books, either physical copies or digital copies for your Amazon Kindle (including the online reader).  All of the money that we earn through them comes back to the site in one way or another.  Just click on the picture to the left to visit our page of books, both fiction and non-fiction!

My recipe for life is not being afraid of myself,
afraid of what I think or of my opinion.

Eartha Kitt
Be yourself and only yourself.
Be careful what you allow
into your body and into your space.
Even the food you put into your body
is crucial to your well-being
and to your sense of Self.
Take care of yourself.
Do not allow anything outside of you
to contaminate you.
Whatever you read affects you.
The television programs you watch,
the movies you see
and the music you listen to
have a profound impact on you.
Be discriminating.
Be discerning.
But do not be judgmental.
If you live a refined life,
you will become more refined.
Choose your friends wisely.
Do not allow others to get caught up
inside you or attached to you.
And don't you become caught up with
or attached to others.
You must be yourself and only yourself
If you are to know the truth of who you are.

Leonard Jacobson


I am much better employed from every point of view, when I live solely
for my own satisfaction, than when I begin to worry about the world.  The
world frightens me, and a frightened man is no good for anything.

George Gissing

Just being ourselves is the biggest fear of humans.  We have learned
to live our life trying to satisfy other people's demands.  We have learned
to live by other people's points of view because of the fear of not being
accepted and of not being good enough for someone else.

Don Miguel Ruiz


There is always a certain peace in being what one is, in being that completely.

Ugo Betti

self  -  individuality  

It is a liberating step when we decide to stop being what other
people want when it is pretense.  Although the singer Ris
Stevens had learned to work on the stage with great poise,
the self-confidence she felt before audiences evaporated in
social situations.  She said, "My discomfort came from trying
to be something I was not--a star in the drawing room as well
as on stage.  If a clever person made a joke, I tried to top it--
and failed.  I pretended to be familiar with subjects
I knew nothing of."

After watching herself fail so desperately in this way, she had a
heart-to-heart talk with herself:  "I realized that I just simply wasn't
a wit or an intellectual and that I could only succeed as myself.  Then,
facing my faults, I began listening and asking questions at parties
instead of trying to impress the guests.  I discovered that I had much
to learn from others.  When I spoke, I tried to contribute, not to shine.
At once I began to feel a new warmth in my social contacts. . . . This
brought me a new joy in being with people.
They like the real me better."

Alan Loy McGinnis

All I can do is act according to my deepest instinct, and be
whatever I must be--crazy or ribald or sad or compassionate
or loving or indifferent.  That is all anybody can do.

Katherine Hathaway

We will discover the nature of our particular genius when we stop
trying to conform to our own or to other people's models, learn to
be ourselves, and allow the natural channel to open.

Shakti Gawain

Every one of us must at last accept ourselves for our portion, and learn to
do our work with the tools and talents with which we have been endowed.

Charles A. Hawley


All the discontented people I know are trying to be something
they are not, to do something they cannot do.

David Grayson


The search for a new personality is fruitless; what is fruitful is the
interest the old personality can take in new activities.

Cesare Pavese

I can't write a book commensurate with Shakespeare,
but I can write a book by me.

Walter Raleigh


People who have the courage to be individuals can usually think
things through on their own and make sound decisions.  They
don't say, "What will people think?"  They say, "What's the best
way to handle this?"  The amazing fact is that God created each
one of us as a separate, unique person amid billions of other
separate, unique individuals.  So the best way to achieve
real fulfillment is to be yourself.

Norman Vincent Peale



Found online:

(Found online images come from a variety of unattributed
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not to share!)


When Walker first steps onto the road, he has no thoughts, no history, no memories, and no clothes. As he travels and meets people and learns from them, he comes to know more about life, living, and becoming the person he's meant to be. Walker is a parable for all of us who wonder what might be the purpose of life, why bad things happen with almost as much regularity as good things, and how we can learn from the bad examples and experiences in our lives as much as we can learn from the good things. Tom Walsh's parable is a story of the ages, a timeless exploration of ideas and thoughts that all of us wonder about, a sincere and heartfelt portrait of a man who has no past and no future, but who learns to make the most of each precious present moment as it comes.



Explore all of our quotations pages--these links will take you to the first page of each topic, and those pages will contain links to any additional pages on the same topic.

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