There are so many possible approaches you can take to this thing we call life. In fact, there are millions of quotes, philosophies and "life mottos" out there that you can adopt as your own. People use these sayings as their Instagram captions. They hang them on walls. They write them in their daily planners. They may even recite them every day to help them get by.
Quotes aren't just words. They hold deep meanings for the people who live by them. The beauty in them is that they mean something different to everyone. If you need some inspiration for your own life mottos, we've compiled a list of 10 life mottos/quotes that you can adopt into your life right now.
"When you're stuck, don't give up -- try something new" - Dragon Tales
Maureen, a UMass student I know, found a quote from an unconventional place and she's held onto it ever since she saw it. Her quote, above, comes from the kids show Dragon Tales and is actually very sound advice.
Here's what she had to say about this life motto: "It means that there [are] always different avenues and ways to solve problems, so don't waste time being upset [about] where you currently are. Try to have backup [plans] and [to approach tough situations from] different outlooks."
Always strive to live in the present - Unknown
Living in the present can be hard to do because so many of us spend our time worrying about the next thing we are supposed to be working on. We worry about the next day, the next month, the next year, maybe even our ten year plan!
While here at CF we love planning ahead and setting goals for the future, overuse of these techniques can stop us from fully experiencing the present.
This philosophy not only applies to mentality but also relates to our use of technology: We are often so stuck on our technological devices that we miss the very moment we are in. It's important to take a step back sometimes and enjoy our time here on Earth.
"It doesn't matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop." - Confucius
In our go-go-go society, it feels like there's constant pressure on us to get things done as quickly and as early in life as possible. For example, people are expected to graduate college in 4 years and go directly into a full-time career path from there. However, our paths are not all the same and we do not all accomplish things on the same timelines. This is totally okay!
Don't let anyone make you feel bad because you are taking your time to finish something in your life. The key takeaway is not to give up. Keep doing your best every day and the rest will work itself out.
Fake it till you make it - Unknown
Another UMass student gladly shared their life motto with us. Liz Diamond lives by a motto that many of us have probably heard -- they're a "big believer in the idea that if you tell yourself something is true enough times eventually it becomes true. If you tell yourself you're a gorgeous and confident and happy person, eventually you'll start to believe it." Amen!
"Why fit in when you were born to stand out?" - Dr. Seuss
Everyone has felt, at some point in life, the desire to fit in. We may have hoped a friend group would accept us or wanted our coworkers to think we were cool. While there's nothing wrong with wanting to fit in or wanting a community to belong to, it's personally fulfilling to let go of the desire to assimilate and just be yourself.
Everyone is unique in their own way and that's what makes the world beautiful. Dr. Seuss definitely knew what he was talking about.
"No matter how many plans you make or how much in control you are, life is always winging it." - Carroll Bryant
Being in control is a nice feeling. It gives us a sense of power over our lives. The reality is, however, that life doesn't take our plans into account. No matter what we do, there are many aspects of our lives we simply can't control.
It's hard to let go and let life take its course, but it's important to recognize that life lives by its own rules. Sometimes the best thing we can do is learn to go with the flow and make the best of the hands we are dealt.
Make peace with your past so it won't mess up your present. - Unknown
The past is interesting because it affects our present and future actions. Many aspects of our personalities and approaches to life can be traced back to past events or our upbringing.
Despite only being 12 words, this life motto speaks volumes. Essentially it's saying that we should acknowledge the past, realize we can't change it now, and come to sense of healing or forgiveness. Only then can we start fresh and truly live in the present moment.
"The secret of getting ahead is getting started." - Mark Twain
Here's a life secret: Starting a project, an assignment, or any other large undertaking is often the hardest part of the entire process. Personally, when it's time for me to start my schoolwork, the energy it takes me to crack open my books is always greater than what's required for the actual work. Once I'm past that first hurdle, I'm usually good to go.
The only way that things are going to progress and get done is if you actually start them. Being the procrastinator that I am, I need to constantly remind myself of this quote.
If we threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back - Unknown
This phrase isn't dismissing our problems as less than the next person's. Everyone is carrying a burden in life and everyone's journey is, of course, important.
This quote, however, reminds us that we don't truly realize what other people are going through and if we did we'd probably be grateful to be dealing with our own issues. With that knowledge in mind, remember to be kind to everyone you meet.
"Be a rainbow in someone else's cloud." - Maya Angelou
This list wouldn't be complete if we didn't include something by the great Maya Angelou. Here she's talking about the power of being a positive force in someone else's life. This is an amazing life motto to remember: If you follow it, you will literally make the world a better place.
We all have people who have been positive forces in our lives, so now it's time to pay it forward. How can you help someone today? How can you bring a smile to another person's face? Even the smallest actions can have major results, so get out there and make a difference.
Do you have a life motto that you live by? If so, what is it? Let us know below in the comments section. Thank you for reading!