Highlights & Annotations
Chapter 1. Voice
01. Your parents were wrong > Location 223
As Oscar Wilde put it , “Most people are other people . Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”
04. In the particular lies the universal > Location 285
The only thing you learn by following the herd is that the view never changes . You never learn how to express your own truth or beauty and never find out the power therein . You never get to know who you are or what you are capable of . The more vulnerable and authentic you can be in expressing your opinion , the deeper the connection you have with others . This is the value of your opinion — what is most personal and unique to you is the very thing that , if you risk expressing it , will speak volumes to others . The hardest part is to trust that your story and opinions have value.
Chapter 2. Fear
22. The struggle is everything > Location 531
If you focus on the reward , you’ll never be happy . The fruit — the money , the fame , the whatever — will never be enough .
Chapter 3. Start
26. What is success? > Location 570
even on down the road you need to pause , check your progress , and realign your priorities by asking yourself a few important and sometimes difficult questions . Are you following a passion ? Do you have time for friends and family ? Health and spiritual nourishment ? Study or travel ? Is your work a service to others ? Is your work emotionally fulfilling ? Basically : What do you cry about in the shower ?
34. Excitement breeds excitement > Location 660
Excitement breeds excitement Everything vibrates . This is a simplified description of the quantum field theory , which basically states , “ Everything in the universe is made up of energy vibrating at different frequencies . ” This includes you . We all vibrate at different frequencies or volumes , from 1 ( low energy ) to 10 ( high energy ) . Some even go to 11 . That idea alone should stir up the universe inside of you . This information means that it is entirely possible to raise someone else’s energy by using your own .
34. Excitement breeds excitement > Location 671
It’s not about persuasion . You can’t trick someone into loving you . It’s all the energies vibrating inside of you that people are attracted to . Your excitement breeds their excitement . This even translates to the product and the things we make . These become infused with our energy , magic , juju , or mojo , whatever you wish to call it . We tend to choose one item over another because “ it speaks to us . ”
Chapter 4. Action
38. Seek the muse > Location 738
She presents herself to us unexpectedly , when we are unaware and in an open state , able to be influenced . She comes to us in the shower , and at the gym ; exercise seems to release congealed thoughts and free the muse .
39. Run from comfort > Location 768
The brave ones — companies and individuals — who risk comfort and safety for a chance at beauty and meaning have the potential to attain more — to actually move someone .
41. Hold the line > Location 787
So , we say yes when we mean no . The cost of all this yes is that we begin to lose ourselves . We slowly lose our personal time and even our self - respect . We end up angry and resentful of our job or loved ones , all because of one lousy habit of saying yes . The gentle art of saying no isn’t about shirking work , friends , or society , but about becoming a better contributor , a more worthy , equal , and happy partner . Bragging about how much time you spend at work shows a complete lack of commitment to your life . Saying no lets others know that you have boundaries and standards . It means taking a stand for yourself .
46. Do the work > Location 850
Do the work I hate doing the work . I don’t want to wake at 4 : 30 a.m . , beat the sun up to steal the time to write . I don’t want to make a plan , check the details , and follow through . Sacrifice , patience , and perseverance are not my strongest traits . Nor do I want to be optimistic and have faith . But I have to . I gotta do the work . No one is going to do it for me . Perhaps if I do all the petty little bits and do them well , these efforts will become habit . Maybe all these little actions will start to add up . Maybe I can become good at these things and in time build a better version of myself . I don’t know , I just do the work . Every damn day .
Chapter 5. Habits
51. Stop deprecating all over yourself > Location 905
Self - deprecation is healthy when it means being humble or witty , but continually calling yourself a loser becomes self - sabotage . You ruin the experience of you for others . This goes for compliments too . We don’t believe ’ em , and can’t accept ’ em , so we poop on ’ em , right in front of the giver . Like the cook who apologizes for the meal before you’ve tasted it . She may as well just spit in your soup .
54. The secret of the universe > Location 936
You can model yourself after others and even emulate the 10 Things Millionaires Do Before Breakfast , but ultimately what will work for you is practicing , taking chances , and learning to trust your own answer .
55. The second arrow > Location 945
By indulging their inner baby , they let the situation ruin their day and pissed in the pool for everyone else around them . Life happens , and we react . How we react is a choice . We can choose to let life beat us up by letting our emotions run off leash , by blaming , or by striking out . Or we can choose to let it go and walk away .
55. The second arrow > Location 948
According to a Buddhist parable , the second arrow comes from our own hands . It hits when you beat yourself up . We all make mistakes , bite off more than we can chew , or fall into debt . The idea is to be conscious of these mistakes , apologize to ourselves immediately , and move on , improved from the experience . Mistakes , accidents , and crappy days are part of the process . Suffering is a choice .
58. You’ve got a big but > Location 969
You’ve got a big but
61. Let go, kitty > Location 996
healthy traits , but most of us suffer from hanging on too long to things that don’t work , to ways that are old - fashioned , clichéd , and not particular to us . Our fear of the future and the unknown has us holding on , white - knuckled , to our tiny ideas , closed to the expanse of possibilities that life has to offer .
61. Let go, kitty > Location 999
Most of us , myself included , have held on too tightly to repeated patterns in our lives . Addictions that don’t serve us and routines that keep us down . Like an annoying older brother smacking you with your own hand , saying “ Why are you hitting yourself . . . why do you keep hitting yourself ? ”
- // myself realizing that I was slapping myself in the face - consumed by work
61. Let go, kitty > Location 1006
Whatever is going to happen , surrender and let it happen . Let go and let the universe do its damn job .
Chapter 6. Purpose
66. Judge not > Location 1071
Most of us are terrible judges of ourselves , let alone our work . We’re so familiar with the marks we make that we can’t recognize them as unique or special .
73. Don’t chase money > Location 1156
Trust the bigger picture . Follow your gut , follow your instincts , and follow your interests . Let money follow you .
75. How to change the world > Location 1167
You may call it being the change or leading by example , or just doing your best . But if you want to change the world , you have to start with yourself . Real change starts with your education , your empathy , and your awareness of the world around you . The better you take care of what is within your reach , the farther you can reach . This is how you affect others . This is how you change the world .
76. A younger me > Location 1180
But control is a myth ; and , as much as I try , life refuses to be wrangled — and trying to wrangle it ends with me fighting myself . Relax and trust the process , trust the stars , and trust yourself . Let everything happen to you in its course , then take a deep breath and relax .