A Few Quotes from Some Extraordinary People

By: Robert White Monday March 17, 2014 comments

One of my most successful postings online is my Extraordinary Minute that I send out weekly detailing a small quote from a successful individual from the past along with my own take and the inspirations I receive from it.  So, with that in mind, I would like to introduce the rest of my readers who have yet to receive my Extraordinary Minute to a few powerful quotes and what I’ve gleaned from them.  I know you will enjoy them and hope you will take the opportunity to add your email to the Extraordinary Minute list here if you haven’t already.

“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right name.”

-Chinese proverb

Often I’m so caught up in my vision or my story that I stray from rigorously telling myself (and others) the full truth.  Whether it be your personal or professional history, or having, as the sages say a “rigorous regard for current reality,” being able to actualize a compelling future vision is dependent on first telling the truth about our past and current lives.

One of the ways I assist myself is to work hard to “live in the question.”  I ask myself if my version of reality is… real!

Another great tool is to have a friend or a support group to test your version of reality.  Of course, ideally they would know of your deeper purpose, vision and values so they would have a filter, a context within which to evaluate your statement.  Even more importantly, you’ll actually LISTEN, free of judgment, blame or excuses.

This level of attention to honesty is rare… and powerful.

“It is not failure to fall short of all you might dream.  The failure is to fall short of dreaming all that you might realize.”

-Dee Hock (founding CEO of Visa)

This reminder from a truly visionary leader speaks to interrupt our human tendency to settle for our limitations… instead of claiming what is inspiring and possible, first in our heart, then in our language and then in our actions.

This quote hangs - accompanied only by pictures of my loved ones - in my office.  I want this specific reminder visible every day so I can realize my life purpose.

What is possible for you?  What is your dream for yourself, your family, your work and your world?

“To live in the presence of great truths and eternal laws, to be led by permanent ideals – that is what keeps a man patient when the world ignores him, and calm and unspoiled when the world praises him.”

-Honore De Balzac

This quote is one that humbles me by its clarity and wisdom.  Of course, that won’t stop me from commenting on it cuz that’s what I do.

I notice that as I mature, I’m more and more interested in “great truths and eternal laws.”  Any leaning I had to echo moral relativism – after all, I survived the sixties – is less and less an influence on my thinking and on my choices.

Accepting some guiding or foundational truths in our lives can lead to a sense of ease and more certainty in how we live.  Part of that included striving to be centered in all circumstances and to taking ourselves a bit less seriously.

I’ve learned – the hard way – that the Roman slave quoted in the movie “Patton” was right on track when he whispered into the conquering General’s ear “all fame is fleeting.”

How about you?  Are you patient when ignored and calm when being praised?  It’s a challenging state of being to maintain.

The power of a quote is unequivocal.  We all have the ability to see different lessons and teachings in each one and can almost always find inspiration in one when we need it most.  If you enjoyed these showings, I encourage you to sign up for my Extraordinary Minute here to continue to receive these powerful ideas - along with a quick quip from yours truly.  These quotes came from Extraordinary People, and as you can see from the variety of the above selections, there is no set definition for what can make one that way.

Robert White

About the Author: Robert White

Find on Google+