10 of my favorite quotes

I put together this page to share the best quotes/parables/anecdotes/stories/movie-one-liners I’ve collected since I began collecting such things.

Here are 10 of my favorites.

On leadership:

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

On travel:

I’m just going to walk the earth. …You know, like Caine in Kung Fu. Walk from place to place, meet people, get in adventures. – Jules in Pulp Fiction

On great fathers:

My father. He used to… He used to have a barbecue every Sunday after church. For anybody in the neighborhood. If you didn’t go to church, you didn’t get any barbecue. – Dom in Fast Five

On humanity:

Society tames the wolf into a dog. And man is the most domesticated animal of all.– Nietzsche

On wisdom:

By three methods we may learn wisdom: first, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third, by experience, which is the most bitter. – Confucius

On love:

Charlie Kaufman: But she thought you were pathetic.
Donald Kaufman: That was her business, not mine. You are what you love, not what loves you.
(scene from Adaptation)

On writing:

People ask me why I write. I write to find out what I know.

On hard work:

If you have two choices, choose the harder. If you’re trying to decide whether to go out running or sit home and watch TV, go running. Probably the reason this trick works so well is that when you have two choices and one is harder, the only reason you’re even considering the other is laziness. – Paul Graham

On life choices:

All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. – Gandalf

On youth:

Two young salmon are swimming along one day. As they do, they are passed by a wiser, older fish coming the other way.
The wiser fish greets the two as he passes, saying, “Morning boys, how’s the water?”
The other two continue to swim in silence for a little while, until the first one turns to the other and asks, “What the hell is water?”
– From David Foster Wallace’s 2005 Commencement Speech at Kenyon

Click here to read about the daily habits that I track and why.