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Pen & Mug

One-Liners to Live By

I've been collecting some strong one-liners in my notebook for years, and thought I'd share a few here in a rapid-fire list. I do not know who to attribute for all of these, but a few of the minds that I can confidently credit include Brad Montague, Brene Brown, Matt Dawson, the marketing leadership team at HCA Healthcare, several local CreativeMornings speakers here in Nashville, and the hosts and guests from two of my favorite podcasts: Perspective Podcast and Creative Pep Talk.

Be a student of your curiosity.

Nurture it. Follow it ravenously.

Have a growth mindset,

as opposed to a victim mindset.

In any discussion, aim to learn, share and grow rather than "win".

Welcome constructive criticism from people who have your best interests in mind. Conversely,

If you're in the arena, don't be bothered by criticism from people in the stands.

You will never be trolled by someone who is doing more than you are.

Fake it  Make shit 'til you make it.

Go out and DO. Learn by doing. Learn while doing.

You could fill a book with everything you'll never learn from a book.

If you're not at least a little embarrassed of who you were last year, you might not be learning enough.


The hardest part of the journey is usually the best part of the story.

This doesn't make it any easier, but sometimes trying to look at things from the end of the tunnel can put them in a new perspective.

Crush the curveball.

The COVID-19 pandemic is an obvious example of something that has forced us all to adapt, but there have always been and will always be unexpected changes that happen and forces that affect us that are out of our control. Evolve.

If you have a lot of goals, start with the one that will make all the other goals easier to achieve.

Improve your health. Build a small platform.

Pretend your mundane actions are heroic.

Sometimes all it takes is a great playlist.

Be the person you needed when you were younger.

Be that person to your kids, students, employees, neighbors, etc.

Keep the human in it, whatever "it" is.

Use process and routine as a support, but don't let it get in the way of human relationship and connection.

Equity, vulnerability, and inclusivity CANNOT happen with those who are privileged remaining "comfortable."

It often involves rewriting part of your way of thinking. It can also mean admitting to blind spots and saying "I'm sorry". It is also for the best.

In times of plenty, you can either build a bigger wall or a longer table.

Let's all build fewer walls, more bridges and larger tables.

What are your favorite one-liners? Please email or DM us!

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