Quotes and Poetry
Elizabeth and I were at The Lodge at Woodloch two weekends ago. I, of course, took John Leone’s water coloring class and this is my newest piece of work. He is a great teacher, and a hero to me because he embodies and models qualities I admire and respect.
In my previous blog I talked about my childhood heroes: Hopalong Cassidy, Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, and Superman. Now here is where the Universe steps in. While at The Lodge we met a wonderful couple, and they gave me a card with this quote on it: “We need heroes because they draw us on to become better versions of ourselves…” Wally Bloc. They had not read my blog and were not even aware that I wrote one, and yet they gave me the perfect quote at the right moment. I love the way the Universe works.
I collect quotes and poetry that inspire me. I am amazed how in a few short words the authors are able to capture the essence of what I believe. Here are some of the ones I use in my coaching and in my workshops:
1. “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Gandhi. This is on my website, and what I strive for daily. I have stopped watching TV news because it focuses on what is wrong in the world. I don’t deny that there are lots of things wrong, and at the same time, I want to contribute and help change things. I believe that by living consciously, being grateful, and contributing to the well-being of others I can influence the world community, and hopefully start a chain reaction of change.
2. “Anyone or anything that does not bring you alive is too small for you.” David Whyte in his poem “Sweet Darkness.” To that end, I surround myself with loving and supportive people. I am a great fan of David Whyte, and highly recommend his work to everyone. In 1994, I took a workshop with him at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, and it accelerated my personal growth. His poetry and words of wisdom have played a large part in making me who I am today. Here are two more quotes by him:
Life is no passing memory of what has been
Nor the remaining pages of a great book
Waiting to be read
It is the opening of eyes long closed
From his poem, The Opening of Eyes
This is the first step to living consciously – simply open your eyes. Be aware of what you say, what you do, and who you spend time with.
4. “Man is the only species that has the privilege of refusing its own blossoming.” I heard David say this at a workshop in NYC. You have free will and choice in your life; you are responsible for where and who you are and where you are going and who you are becoming.
5. ” At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.” Lao Tzu Founder of Taoism. In Co-Active Coaching we say that everyone is creative, resourceful, and whole. You know what you want and how to get it, but you may be blocked from accessing this information. As a Life Coach, I have helped 100s of individuals get past their inner critics and limiting beliefs. I have helped 100s of individuals to live more fulfilled and balanced lives.
6. “You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.” This is from Mary Oliver’s poem “Wild Geese.” David Whyte introduced me to the poetry of Mary Oliver. To me this poem says, get out of your own way; get out of your head; let your heart speak.
7. “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”
Paulo Coelho from his book “The Alchemist.” Ask for what you want; say it out loud in the clear air, and trust the Universe. The Universe will give you feedback; look for the signs. Live consciously.
The hand moves
And the fire’s whirling
Makes different shapes.
All things change when we do.
- From “Singing Images of Fire”, Kukei, 8th c. Zen Master. You influence others by who you are and what you do. You are a leader and role model, live accordingly.
9. “And as you let your own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”This is from Marianne Williamson’s “Return To Love.” Another way of saying what Gandhi said and what Kukei wrote. Live consciously, be your full self, and know that you make a difference.
10. “A true spiritual teacher does not have anything to teach in the conventional sense of the word, does not have anything to give or add to you, such as new information, beliefs, or rules of conduct. The only function of such a teacher is to help you remove that which separates you from the truth of who you already are and what you already know in the depth of your being.” Eckhart Tolle. We all need help along our journey. To me, this describes what a Life Coach does.
What are your favorite quotes and poems? Do you collect them, memorize them, and use them to motivate and inspire yourself and others? If you do, please send me some of yours.