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September is National Self-Improvement Month. It never hurts to make a personal assessment of where we are and where we wish to be.
Self-improvement can be born of experience or necessity; sometimes it is a choice, and at other times it seems to percolate from within.
It can involve replacing old habits with new skills, letting go and forgiving, seeing something from a new perspective, and occasionally we are graced with an attitude altering insight. Much of the time, we simply need to get out of our own way.
Before sharing some quotes about self-improvement, it is helpful to remember that change must be balanced by self-acceptance. Unless we kindly accept where we are presently, and the strengths and weaknesses we have to work with, our attempts to change can be hampered by guilt or shame.
“Do your best, and be a little better than you are.” ~ Gordon B. Hinckley
“Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them.” ~ Albert Einstein
“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.” ~ Carl R. Rogers, psychologist
“We already have everything we need. There is no need for self-improvement. All these trips that we lay on ourselves—the heavy-duty fearing that we’re bad and hoping that we’re good, the identities that we so dearly cling to, the rage, the jealousy and the addictions of all kinds—never touch our basic wealth. They are like clouds that temporarily block the sun. But all the time our warmth and brilliance are right here.” ~ Pema Chodron, Start Where Your Are
“One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self.” ~ Aldous Huxley
“What we call our destiny is truly our character and that character can be altered. The knowledge that we are responsible for our actions and attitudes does not need to be discouraging, because it also means that we are free to change this destiny. ~ Anais Nin
“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” ~ Jim Rohn
“How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book.”
~ Henry David Thoreau
“It‘s not what you say out of your mouth that determines your life, it’s what you whisper to yourself that has the most power!” ~ Robert T. Kiosaki
“Part of abandoning the all-or-nothing mentality is allowing yourself room for setbacks. We are bound to have lapses on the road to health and wellness, but it is critical that we learn how to handle small failures positively so that we can minimize their long-term destructive effects. One setback is one setback – it is not the end of the world, nor is it the end of your journey toward a better you.” ~ Jillian Michaels
“As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world - that is the myth of the atomic age – as in being able to remake ourselves.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
“If you can see yourself as an artist, and you can see that your life is your own creation, then why not create the most beautiful story for yourself?” ~ Miguel Ruiz
“I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, ‘Where’s the self-help section?’ She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.” ~ Steven Wright
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