We all need a little burst of wisdom once in a while, whether it's to jolt ourselves into a desired frame of mind, to process a life event, to borrow inspiration for an occasion, or to get motivated to take on a new challenge.
There were a few common threads woven throughout 2020 that continue to resonate with me: adversity, change, perspective, and resilience. Here are some quotes that pertain to each of these themes--spanning centuries and paths--that I think anyone can draw inspiration from as we look to a better year ahead.
"He knows not his own strength who hath not met adversity." --William Samuel Johnson
"A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials." --Lucius Annaeus Seneca
"I hope you remember that if you encounter an obstacle on the road, don't think of it as an obstacle at all ... think of it as a challenge to find a new path on the road less traveled." --Hyeonseo Lee, The Girl With Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story
"Challenges are gifts that force us to search for a new center of gravity. Don't fight them. Just find a new way to stand." --Oprah Winfrey
"Always plan for the fact that no plan ever goes according to plan." --Simon Sinek
"Nothing is predestined. The obstacles of your past can become the gateways that lead to new beginnings." --Ralph Blum
"Sometimes we can only find our true direction when we let the wind of change carry us." --Mimi Novic, Your Light Is the Key
"Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters in our lives won't have a title until much later." --Bob Goff
"The only thing you sometimes have control over is your perspective. You don't have control over your situation. But you have a choice about how you view it." --Chris Pine
"Life is about perspective and how you look at something ... ultimately, you have to zoom out." --Whitney Wolfe Herd
"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change the way you think about it." --Mary Engelbreit
"You know, when you look at the moon, you think, 'I'm really small. What are my problems?' It sets things into perspective, etc., etc. We should all look at the moon a bit more often. --Alain de Botton (2011 TED Talk)
"It is only in our darkest hours that we may discover the true strength of the brilliant light within ourselves that can never, ever, be dimmed." --Doe Zantamata
"The human capacity for burden is like bamboo--far more flexible than you'd ever believe at first glance." --Jodi Picoult, My Sister's Keeper
"Persistence and resilience only come from having been given the chance to work through difficult problems." --Gever Tulley
"Resilience is knowing that you are the only one that has the power and the responsibility to pick yourself up." --Mary Holloway
May we all be better for the adversity, change, perspective, and resilience experienced in 2020 as we enter this highly anticipated new year.