I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion. -- Henry David Thoreau, Walden
"Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify, simplify! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumb-nail."
I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.
It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us.
Why should we be in such desperate haste to succeed and in such desperate enterprises? If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.
Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life so. Aim above morality. Be not simply good, be good for something.
Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.
Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.
Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.
You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this.
There is no remedy for love, but to love more.
Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.
Not till we are completely lost or turned around... do we begin to find ourselves.
All good things are wild and free.
Be true to your work, your word, and your friend.
Things do not change; we change.
We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake, not by mechanical aids, but by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us even in our soundest sleep. I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavour. It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do. To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.
As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.
One is not born into the world to do everything but to do something.
Let go of the past and go for the future. Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you've imagined.
The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.
I do believe in simplicity. It is astonishing as well as sad, how many trivial affairs even the wisest thinks he must attend to in a day; how singular an affair he thinks he must omit. When the mathematician would solve a difficult problem, he first frees the equation of all incumbrances, and reduces it to its simplest terms. So simplify the problem of life, distinguish the necessary and the real. Probe the earth to see where your main roots run.
I can alter my life by altering my attitude. He who would have nothing to do with thorns must never attempt to gather flowers.
Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.
My greatest skill in life has been to want but little
It is never too late to give up your prejudices
In human intercourse the tragedy begins, not when there is misunderstanding about words, but when silence is not understood
Life isn't about finding yourself; it's about creating yourself. So live the life you imagined.
But it is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.
The whole course of human history may depend on a change of heart in a single, solitary, even humble individual. For it is within the soul of the individual that the battle between good and evil is waged and ultimately won or lost.
I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual.O how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment.