If you have ever attended any of my Motivational Talks, you would know – how huge a fan, I am, of these motivational one liners. They are funny, witty, smart and they do the job – in fewer words. And the writing bug bit me around 7 years ago. Ever since I have been coming up with my own too; albeit occasionally. The reason for sharing them here is – it’s a collection for you, my reader, to come back for some quick inspiration – whenever you feel that life has been kicking you harder than you deserve. Some of these motivational one liners though, might kick you harder while some are sympathetic (if you like sympathy, do read the first one carefully). Truth, sometimes, sounds harsh.
But, do read on. And if you believe they can help you / someone you know wake up – do share these one liners with them:
“If you’re looking for sympathy, you’ll find it in the dictionary between “shit” and “syphilis”.
I say, aim for respect, for kindness, for love. Not for sympathy. It is a waste of time, and often prestige. If you do good, and if need arises, you will have sympathy without asking for it. But aiming to be a ‘victim’ always – is a dent on your self confidence that will have no repair.
Remember you are just an extra in everyone else’s play.
It pains me many a times to tell people – that they are not the center of the universe! Please remember – everyone has their own play going on. That’s how brilliant the Almighty is, as a director – producer – entertainer. Your people are mere actors in your play. And you are a mere actor in theirs. And all you can do is – play your part well. Nothing more can be done. Nothing less should be aimed for.
Worrying works! 90% of the things I worry about never happen.
Unfortunately, we can learn this only after going through this. The number of crease lines on your forehead, and the litres of sweat on your palm – will not help you an iota when there is a problem ahead. We have imaginative, hyperactive minds. Train it – and put it to good use. Do not worry so much. There is a saying in Hindi, “Chinta, chita ke samaan hai” (Worrying is similar to being on a funeral pyre). Most of the scenarios you are creating, won’t happen anyway.
I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted paychecks.
This is my insight after talking to hundreds of people as a Motivational Speaker. Most people confuse their monthly salaries as their passions, their careers. Earning well is a great thing. But mistaking your paycheck to be your peace – could turn out to be a bigger mistake. If the SMS “salary has been credited” is the source of all your happiness, you need to slow down and do some rewind / flashback.
If God is watching us, the least we can do is be entertaining.
I love this one. If you look at your life 10 years ago, most of the things you were shit scared of – seem to be funny now. Same will happen when you repeat this activity 10 years hence. Inculcate this ability to laugh at yourself when you do mistakes; find ways to not lose your happiness / calm in bad times; be a happy person. No one is getting anywhere by being grief-stricken anyway. So what’s the point of being mopey!
(I recently wrote a letter to my 20yr old self, which captures the essence of many of these one liners. Do give it a read.)
You will find God in the church of your choice.
Many many people find it hard to implement. No matter which faith you belong to, God is One. We just have different names. His essence remains the same. And no matter which place of worship you walk into – if you have love and faith in your heart for Him, you will feel his presence. For, we may have tried to find him in statues and shrines, but He is everywhere.
The only real elegance is in the mind; if you’ve got that, the rest really comes from it.
Don’t be a slave to vanity. To whatever extent you can imagine – the world is much bigger than that – and you are much more insignificant than you think you are important. The best way to deal with this is – to grow a beautiful mind, with beautiful thoughts in it. And remember – more often than not, we fall in love with people’s minds. Because, that is what we stay with for a long part of our lives. So – find elegance in the place where it will sustain and grow – inexpensively and perennially. Vanity will fade.
No matter how far you have traveled down the wrong road, turn back.
Mistakes are the pebbles that get scrunched under our feet as we undertake this journey of life. They are everywhere. What matters is – not to get deterred and trying not to walk on them. And there is always scope to come back and start afresh. And coming back might be hard. But it will feel much better.
Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self esteem, make sure that you are not in fact, surrounding yourself with assholes.
A lot of debate is going on about the rising mental health epidemic in our times. And this addresses them simply. I am not questioning / ridiculing anyone with clinical depression or any other troubles. But I do want to urge people to not rush into any sort of self diagnosis and making things worse for themselves!
(Read: Loneliness: The New Epidemic of the Youth)
Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.
This one reminds me of the very important question that Lord Krishna asks Arjuna during the sermon of the Bhagawad Gita. He asks, “Parth, do you what is the biggest ‘vidambanda’ (irony) of today? People have answers to all problems of others’ lives but none to their own”. If you have all the right advice, why don’t you use it on yourself?
(Read: Paramount Life Lessons from Bhagawad Gita)
Since you alone are responsible for your thoughts, only you can change them.
It is very easy to blame. But taking responsibility – that requires morale, courage, character. What thoughts take seed in that head of yours – is no one else’s doing. It is your own. Deal with it.
Having lots of money while not having inner peace is like dying of thirst while bathing in the ocean.
Have you read the poem, “Rime of the ancient mariner”? There is a very famous line that describes the paradox of life perfectly – “Water water everywhere, not a drop to drink”. Don’t let your life become that paradox. Either be fully satisfied with choosing to have lots of money and chasing more. Or be convinced that you are happy with a little less, if it gives you peace. Don’t dangle in between! That’s a pitiful place to be!
Courage is not the towering oak that sees storms come and go. It is the fragile blossom that opens in the snow.
It simply means that courage does not have to be outlandish, and out there – for everyone to see. Sometimes, courage is about quietly fighting your demons everyday, about doing that which you are afraid of – no matter how small a thing it is.
If only we’d stop trying to be happy we could have a pretty good time.
When you are trying to be happy, it means inherently you are not. That leads to the chase. I know there are people who believe “It is okay to not be happy all the time” / “What’s wrong with being sad once in a while. It is good for the heart” etc. I just want to tell them – it it is not your default state – your equilibrium will never move towards it!
Never measure the height of a mountain until you have reached the top. Only then you will see how low it was.
For, the height of the mountain could be intimidating from where you stand. But trust in your steps – can take you a long way. And when you do reach the top, you will know that it turned out to be okay. Take life as it comes – each day as it comes – if the bigger picture is too much for you. And you will see that you have lived alright 🙂
(Read more by Sri Sri Paramhansa Yogananda Ji, author of ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’)
You can throw stones, complain about them, stumble on them, climb over them, or build with them. Depends.
It is the same as – the difference between your 24hrs and that of Steve Jobs or Albert Einstein’s. I.e. how you utilize them. The earth is same for everyone, the clocks we use are same, the time we perceive is same. The difference in output is the difference in our perceptions and efforts. Same with these stones. There are dams made of stones that stop massive rivers. And then there are stone peltings. You take your pick – as to what you want to do with the resources you have. Arjuna had only Krishna, while Duryodhana had his Narayanai sena. Look who won 🙂
Games are won by players who focus on the playing field — not by those whose eyes are glued to the scoreboard.
It’s simple logic. How will you play if you don’t keep your eyes on the play. Be it Arjuna piercing the eye of the bird, Rama piercing the eye of the fish, or Tendulkar keeping his eye on the ball and blacking out the chants of the raging fans – to win you need to truly love the game, the thrill of playing it and the tremendous joy in the rush of adrenaline. Any other purpose will only distract – and only keep you inhibited from giving your 100%.
I have brought these motivational one liners for you with much love. I hope you find them worthy of your attention. Do share more in the comments. And if you believe they might just help someone find some perspective, do share it with them!
Rise & Shine