Tag: Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

Quotes May 01, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“Here is my box of new crayons at your feet.”
Marge Piercy, “Colors Passing Through Us”
 
 
 
 
“Now and then it is a joy to have one’s table red with wine and roses.”
Oscar Wilde, De Profundis
 
 
 
 
“A red flower placed in a window may expand its influence over all the area of your sight.”
Robert Henri, The Art Spirit
 
 
 
 
“Long have you timidly waded holding a plank by the shore,
Now I will you to be a bold swimmer,
To jump off in the midst of the sea, rise again, nod to me, shout, and laughingly dash with your hair. ”
“Not I, not any one else can travel that road for you,
You must travel it for yourself.
It is not far, it is within reach,
Perhaps you have been on it since you were born and did not know,
Perhaps it is everywhere on water and on land.”
Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself, 46”
 
 
 
 
“One does not ‘find oneself’ by pursuing one’s self, but on the contrary by pursuing something else and learning through some discipline or routine (even the routine of making beds) who one is and wants to be.”
May Sarton, The House by the Sea
 
 
 
 
“The surest way to discipline passion is to discipline time.”
W. H. Auden, The Dyer’s Hand and Other Essays
 
 
 
 
“It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do.”
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
 
 
 
 
“Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
 
 
 
 
“Neither does the tree hold back its leaves but lets them flow open or glide away when the time is right.”
Mary Oliver, “Habits, Differences, and the Light That Abides,” Long Life
 
 
 
 
“I didn’t know when I was coming back, but I knew I wouldn’t be the same on my return…If there was anyone I needed to get away from, it was me.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own: Stories from My Life
 
 
 
 
“If you don’t live the only life you have, you won’t live some other life, you won’t live any life at all.”
James Baldwin, James Baldwin: The Last Interview and Other Conversations
 
 
 
 
“The best time to plant a tree was twenty years go. The second best time is now.”
Proverb
 
 
 
 
“Home is a physical space; it’s also a state of mind.’
Gretchen Rubin

Quotes April 14, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“When one comes away from an art gallery with a sense of being irradiated, often it is as much from the colors one has absorbed as from the visions of the artists. Much of the thrill of spring, I think, is because of the return of color.”
Ross Parmenter, The Awakened Eye
 
 
 
 
“To make Routine a Stimulus
Remember it can cease—
Capacity to Terminate
Is a Specific Grace— ”
Emily Dickinson, “To make Routine a Stimulus,” 1196
 
 
 
 
“People seldom see themselves changing. It is like going out in the morning, or in the springtime to pick flowers. You pick and you wander till suddenly you find that the light is gone and the flowers are withered in your hand.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on a Road
 
 
 
 
“Every little action of the common day makes or unmakes character.”
Oscar Wilde, De Profundis
 
 
 
 
“Failure after long perseverance is much grander than never to have a striving good enough to be called a failure.”
George Eliot, Middlemarch
 
 
 
 
“Only those who love color are admitted to its beauty and immanent presence. It affords utility to all, but unveils its deeper mysteries only to its devotees.”
Johannes Itten, The Elements of Color
 
 
 
 
“To change fate, you do not choose small steps.”
Amy Tan, “How to Change Fate: Step 1,” in Where the Past Begins: A Writer’s Memoir (
 
 
 
 
“One does not play Bach without having done scales. But neither does one play a scale merely for the sake of the scale.”
Simone Weil, Gravity and Grace

Quotes April 05, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“Every little action of the common day makes or unmakes character.”
“Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation.”
Oscar Wilde, De Profundis
 
 
 
 
“People seldom see themselves changing. It is like going out in the morning, or in the springtime to pick flowers. You pick and you wander till suddenly you find that the light is gone and the flowers are withered in your hand.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on a Road

“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
 
 
 
 
“There is a joy in the pursuit of anything.”
Robert Henri, The Art Spirit
 
 
 
 
“Her green mind made the world around her green.”
Wallace Stevens, “Description Without Place”
 
 
 
 
“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
 
 
 
 
“Home is what sets the course to our travels. Home is what we leave behind, knowing we’ll recover it at the end of the journey. Home is also what makes going away safe.”
Andre Aciman, “The Contrafactual Traveler,” Alibis
 
 
 
 
“If you ever want to keep up a grudge against someone, don’t see that person alongside beautiful flowers.”
Jamaica Kincaid, My Garden (Book)
 
 
 
 
“Silence was the cure, if only temporarily, silence and geography. But of what was I being cured? I do not know, have never known. I only know the cure. Silence, and no connections except to landscape.”
Mary Cantwell, Manhattan, When I Was Young
 
 
 
 
“I was made for the library, not the classroom.The classroom was a jail of other people’s interests. The library was open, unending, free.”
Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and Me
 
 
 
 
“How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them!”
Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack
 
 
 
 
“Every now and then the sound of a rooster crowing or the mournful cry of a donkey takes me back to my island. Why do I call it ‘my’? I wonder. Some part of it was given to me for keeps, I believe. Writing today from this distance, it’s as if I’d always lived in that house with windows looking out to the garden and sea.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own: Stories from My Life
 
 
 
 
Do any task that be finished in less than one minute, without delay.
Gretchen Rubin

Quotes March 20, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.”
Archilochus
 
 
 
 
“The rack stood as if it had been there forever across the landscape and lit by the sun with its long shadow behind it, and in harmony with every fold of the field and finally turned into a mere form, a primordial form, even if that was not the word I used then, and it gave me huge pleasure just to look at it.”
Per Petterson, Out Stealing Horses
 
 
 
 
“The whole language of writing for me is finding out what you don’t want to know, what you don’t want to find out. But something forces you anyway.”
James Baldwin, The Paris Review
 
 
 
 
“When things are taking their ordinary course, it is hard to remember what matters.”
Marilynne Robinson, Gilead
 
 
 
 
“So often you have to run away from home and visit other homes first before you can clearly see your own.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own: Stories from My Life
 
 
 
 
“Though still very far from being perfect girls, each was slowly learning, in her own way, one of the three lessons all are the better for knowing – that cheerfulness can change misfortune into love and friends; that in ordering one’s self aright one helps others to do the same; and that the power of finding beauty in the humblest things makes home happy and life lovely.”
Louisa May Alcott, Jack and Jill
 
 
 
 
“I should say that happiness is being where one is and not wanting to be anywhere else.”
Michael Frayn, A Landing on the Sun
 
 
 
 
“What I would like to do is to improve myself and to improve others…Improve!—such a dull word but it includes more sensitiveness, more realization of variety, and more capacity for adventure.”
E. M. Forster, The Prince’s Tale, and Other Uncollected Writings
 
 
 
 
“It showed me one thing that being an adult meant. You were no longer limited to observing the world: Now you could join it. Instead of just being a fan of things you loved, you could get inside them. You could make them yourself.”
Susan Burton, Empty
 
 
 
 
“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being with an independent will.”
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
 
 
 
 
“To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.”
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
 
 
 
 
“‘It’s not easy to start over in a new place,’ he said. ‘Exile is not for everyone. Someone has to stay behind, to receive the letters and greet family members when they come back.'”
Edwidge Danticat, Brother, I’m Dying
 
 
 
 

Quotes March 07, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“One thing I have learned about attention is that certain forms of it are contagious. When you spend enough time with someone who pays close attention to something (if you were hanging out with me, it would be birds), you inevitably start to pay attention to some of the same things.”
Jenny Odell, How to Do Nothing
 
 
 
 
“The farm was a form: not like a set of rules on a wall, but like the symmetry of winter and summer, or like the balance of day and night over the year, June against December.”
Donald Hall, String Too Short to Be Saved
 
 
 
 
“Everything gains in grandeur every day, becomes more and more unknown, more and more beautiful. The closer I come, the grander it is, the more remote it is.”
Alberto Giacometti, Giacometti: A Biography
 
 
 
 
“I’d once been like that, so lonely that I craved further loneliness. Even after I’d made a few friends in college, I would still go out of my way to create whatever conditions I needed that might allow me to be alone.”
Yaa Gyasi, Transcendent Kingdom
 
 
 
 
“Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home.”
Matsuo Basho, The Narrow Road to the Deep North
 
 
 
 
“Why some things—a word, a glance, a scene glimpsed from a window, a random memory, a fragrance, a conversational anecdote, a fragment of music, or of a dream—have the power to stimulate us to intense creativity while most others do not, we are unable to say.”
Joyce Carol Oates, The Faith of a Writer
 
 
 
 
“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
William Morris
 
 
 
 
“I understand how scarlet can differ from crimson because I know that the smell of an orange is not the smell of a grape-fruit.”
Helen Keller, The World I Live In
 
 
 
 
“In the long run men hit only what they aim at. Therefore, though they should fail immediately, they had better aim at something high.”
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
 
 
 
 
“So often you have to run away from home and visit other homes first before you can clearly see your own.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own
 
 
 
 
Enthusiasm is a form of social courage.
Gretchen Rubin

 
 
 
 

Quotes February 23, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“When one loves, one does not calculate.”
St. Therese of Lisieux, Story of a Soul
 
 
 
 
“Love is a creative act. When you love someone you create a new world for them. My mother did that for me, and with the progress I made and the things I learned, I came back and created a new world and a new understanding for her.”
Trevor Noah, Born a Crime
 
 
 
 
“We may, by fixing our attention almost fiercely on the facts actually before us, force them to turn into adventures; force them to give up their meaning and fulfill their mysterious purpose.”
G. K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles
 
 
 
 
“The way in which people miss their opportunities is melancholy.”
Elizabeth von Arnim, The Solitary Summer
 
 
 
 
“Man needs, for his happiness, not only the enjoyment of this or that, but hope and enterprise and change.”
Bertrand Russell, Philosophy and Politics
 
 
 
 
“I shall never have the garden I have in my mind, but that for me is the joy of it; certain things can never be realized and so all the more reason to attempt them.”
Jamaica Kincaid, My Garden (Book)
 
 
 
 
“A library is a medicine cabinet. What can heal one person may not work at all for somebody else.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own: Stories from My Life
 
 
 
 
“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.”
“Janie saw her life like a great tree in leaf with the things suffered, things enjoyed, things done and undone. Dawn and doom was in the branches.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
 
 
 
 
“The discovery of a new dish confers more happiness on humanity, than the discovery of a new star.”
Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste, or Meditation on Transcendent Gastronomy
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

Quotes February 11, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“I would never have chosen this path, but I am very glad to be who I am, here.”
Audre Lorde, The Cancer Journals, March 30, 1979

 
 
 
 
“Why do two colours, put one next to the other, sing? Can one really explain this? No.”
Pablo Picasso, quoted in Picasso on Art by Dore Ashton
 
 
 
 
“Color is the most sacred element of all visible things.”
John Ruskin, Modern Painters
 
 
 
 
“Red is the ultimate cure for sadness.”
Bill Blass
 
 
 
 
“Hours and days and months and years go by; the past returns no more, and what is to be we cannot know; but whatever the time gives us in which we live, we should therefore be content.”
Cicero, “On Old Age”
 
 
 
 
“Memory is not a straight line. It is like a tree, spreading its branches in all directions.”
Muriel Spark, “Footnote to ‘The Poet’s House,’” The Informed Air
 
 
 
 
“Time…was one of those painters who keep a work by them for half a lifetime, adding to it year after year until it is completed.”
Marcel Proust, Time Regained
 
 
 
 
“There is a joy in the pursuit of anything.”
Robert Henri, The Art Spirit
 
 
 
 
It is all a question of weeding out what you yourself like best to do, so that you can live most agreeably in a world full of an increasing number of disagreeable surprises.”
M.F.K. Fisher, How to Cook a Wolf
 
 
 
 
“It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility; they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it.”
Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre
 
 
 
 
“It’s enough for me to be sure that you and I exist at this moment.”
Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude
 
 
 
 
“Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in. I drink at it; but while I drink I see the sandy bottom and detect how shallow it is. Its thin current slides away, but eternity remains.”
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
 
 
 
 
“Each time of life has its own kind of love.”
Leo Tolstoy, Family Happiness and Other Stories
 
 
 
 
“True reading comes from pleasure, not obligation. When obliged to read something that doesn’t speak to you, you’ll ultimately forget it.”
Sandra Cisneros, A House of My Own: Stories from My Life
 
 
 
 
“If you loved anybody that long, first as an infant, then as a child, then as a man, you gain a strange perspective on time and human pain and effort. Other people cannot see what I see whenever I look into your father’s face, for behind your father’s face as it is today are all those other faces that were his.”
James Baldwin, The Fire Next Time
 
 
 
 
“Each of us is born with a box of matches inside us but we can’t strike them all by ourselves.”
Laura Esquivel, Like Water for Chocolate

 
 

 
 

Quotes January 23, 2021

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“There are no new truths, but only truths that have not been recognized by those who have perceived them without noticing.”
Mary McCarthy, “The Vita Activa,” On The Contrary: Articles of Belief, 1946-1961
 
 
 
 
“Who is strong? He that can conquer his bad habits.”
Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack
 
 
 
 
“Maybe I was reaching for authenticity through a funhouse mirror. I didn’t know. I just didn’t want to be who I was. It turns out that’s not a specific enough request.”
R. Eric Thomas, Here For It
 
 
 
 
“Such as are your habitual thoughts; such also will be the character of your mind; for the soul is dyed by the thoughts.”
Marcus Aurelius
 
 
 
 
“Anything one does every day is important and imposing and anywhere one lives is interesting and beautiful.”
Gertrude Stein, Paris France
 
 
 
 
“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
William Morris
 
 
 
 
“It isn’t necessarily the great and famous beauty spots that we fall in love with. As with people, so with places: love is unforeseen, and we can all find ourselves affectionately attached to the minor and the less obvious.”
Muriel Spark, “Tuscany by Chance,” The Informed Air
 
 
 
 
“No matter how mundane some action might appear, keep at it long enough and it becomes a contemplative, even meditative act.”
Haruki Murakami, “What I Talk About When I Talk About Running”

 
 
 
 
“I am a great believer in the seasons. Even here in my own world, I have no relish for sweet corn in January or strawberries in November.”
Pearl S. Buck, My Several Worlds
 
 
 
 
“We change, but always at a cost: to win this you lose that.”
Geoffrey Wolff, A Day at the Beach, “Apprentice”
 
 
 
 
“People pay for what they do, and still more, for what they have allowed themselves to become. And they pay for it very simply: by the lives they lead.”
James Baldwin, No Name in the Street
 
 
 
 
“But what is colour? A kind of bliss.”
Roland Barthes, “Cy Twombly: Works on Paper”
 
 
 
 

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of convenience and comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength to Love
 
 
 
 
“How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book!”
“I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavor.”
Henry David Thoreau

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

Quotes December 19, 2020

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“Light, that first phenomenon of the world, reveals to us the spirit and living soul of the world through colors.”
Johannes Itten, The Elements of Color
 
 
 
 
“There is no substitute for the comfort supplied by the utterly taken-for-granted relationship.”
Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head
 
 
 
 
“There is another side of Kanchenjunga and of every mountain—the side that has never been photographed and turned into postcards. That is the only side worth seeing.”
Thomas Merton, The Other Side of the Mountain: Journal Vol. 7
 
 
 
 
“Silence is a strange thing to us who live: we desire it, we fear it, we worship it, we hate it. There is a divinity about cats, as long as they are silent: the silence of swans gives them an air of legend.”
Keith Douglas, Alamein to Zem Zem
 
 
 
 
“I cannot think of myself apart from the influence of the two or three greatest friendships of my life, and any account of my own growth must be that of their stimulating and enlightening influence.”
Edith Wharton, A Backward Glance
 
 
 
 
“There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor.”
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

Quotes December 12, 2020

Courtesy of Gretchen Rubin Moment of Happiness

 
 
“It is easy to be heavy; hard to be light.”
G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy
 
 
 
 
“I should say that happiness is being where one is and not wanting to be anywhere else.”
Michael Frayn, A Landing on the Sun
 
 
 
 
“Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
 
 
 
 
“His mother saw that he was not lonesome, and because she was an understanding mother, even though she was a cow, she let him just sit there and be happy.”
Munro Leaf, The Story of Ferdinand
 
 
 
 
“I think my mind becomes clearer when I am in the presence of nature. Unfortunately, the realization of my sensations is always a very painful process with me. I can’t seem to express the intensity which beats upon my senses. I haven’t at my command the magnificent richness of color which enlivens Nature…Look at that cloud; I should like to be able to paint that!”
Paul Cezanne, in Cezanne by Ambroise Vollard
 
 
 
 
“Before I manage to really wear myself down on a walk, there is often so much to think about. Children, work, unanswered messages. When my strength is reduced, I no longer have the resources to think about much, and that’s when the smells, the sounds and the ground seem to draw much closer to my experience. It’s as if my senses open to their surroundings.”
Erling Kagge, Walking One Step at a Time
 
 
 
 
“Everything turns out to be valuable that one does for one’s self without thought of profit.”
Marguerite Yourcenar, Memoirs of Hadrian
 
 
 
 
“Failure after long perseverance is much grander than never to have a striving good enough to be called a failure.”
George Eliot, Middlemarch
 
 
 
 
“There is gold paint, but Rembrandt didn’t use it to paint a golden helmet.”
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Remarks on Color
 
 
 
 
[Of the reading she did in her childhood] “I do not regret the trash. It has harmed me in no way. It was a help, because acquiring the reading habit early is the important thing. Taste and natural development will take care of the rest later on.”
Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on a Road
 
 
 
 
“My mind works in idleness. To do nothing is often my most profitable way.”
Virginia Woolf, Diary, February 16, 1930
 
 
 
 
“Yes, I’ve always been a dreamer, and yes, I have always tried. And dreams are special things. But dreams are of no value if they’re not equipped with wings and feet and hands and all that. If you’re going to make a dream come true, you’ve got to work with it. You can’t just sit around. That’s a wish. That’s not a dream.”
Dolly Parton, interview, Bust June/July 2014
 
 
 
 
Gretchen Rubin: Ideas for How to “Exorcise” 2020.