Re-writing inspirational quotes

Inspirational quotes are so popular; they have their own Instagram accounts. While they are intended to motivate, they can also affect people negatively. I’ve chosen four of these quotes and re-written them into what I think is more meaningful and motivating.

Quote 1

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This quote is often accompanied by words such as: it is crucial that you fill your life with people who care about you, uplift you, inspire you and bring out the best in you.

Yes, it is absolutely true but let’s be careful to not exclude people and put them in boxes. I agree that it is essential to connect with people who encourage you and give you strength to continue in your own journey, especially during times when you’re drained, stressed, tired and unwilling to go on. Connecting with people is a natural part of human life and we need it like we need love and happiness to ground and center us. I also feel that anybody can improve me, not just the ones who care about me, uplift me, inspire me and bring out the best in me. My self-improvement can be influenced by anybody but it is certainly not dependant on it. I can connect with someone who doesn’t care about me or uplift me through common interests. The reality is that we all have a rebellious side; I can be encouraging towards my mum and hurtful to my husband. We are both light and dark and if you see it the way I see it then anybody can help to improve you. It just depends on your perception of the issues and situation.

For this quote, I’d re-write it to:

Β Associate with people to improve you

Quote 2

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Not long ago, in fact in my first blog, I said something similar to this. We often throw the words ‘true colors’ around when someone exhibits unimpressive behaviour, often when we’re going through a tough spell ourselves. But what exactly is one’s true colors? If true colors are those demonstrated when someone else is battling the storm, then what colors are shown when there is no storm? False colors?

Color by definition is the property possessed by an object of producing different sensations on the eye as a result of the way it reflects or emits light. So, a different color or variation of the same color can be shown depending on how an object is reflecting/emitting light. Basically, there can be a slight difference in the color of my skin under different lighting conditions. So, can this also be true for people’s nature and behaviour? I believe it is!

In tech terms, “True color is the specification of the color of a pixel on a display screen using a 24-bit value, which allows the possibility of up to 16,777,216 possible colors.” That’s over 16 million possibilities of true color!

What’s my point? People can exhibit over 16 million types of behaviour. I exaggerate but you get my point. Therefore, it shouldn’t come as a surprise when someone behaves in an unusual way and you’re made to feel small and upset by it. It’s not his/her true colors, it’s just a side of him/her that you haven’t seen yet. The other colors of him/her are all true and are all there, you’re just seeing what’s being emitted/reflected by the situation or what he/she wants you to see. It depends on you how you deal with people but saying ‘oh she just showed her true colors’ does not make sense to me anymore.

For this quote, I’d re-write it to:

It’s during the storms of life that you will get to see different colors of the people who say they care for you.

Quote 3

img_4362First of all, how do you know they defended you when you weren’t around to witness it? What you know is a version of the story, obviously a biased one. Also, if this is a pre-requisite for friendship, then I should have a long, long, long line of friends because I’ve defended a lot of people in their absence and without knowing them personally.

A friend is a friend full stop. Your friend holds his/her own sovereignty and therefore it should depend on him/her whether or not they defend you in your absence, but it certainly should not be a check-box for the value of your friendship. It is nice that your friend does stand by you in any given situation but this should not be the standard expectation for any friendship because your values and beliefs may differ individually. Approaching any relationship with an open mind and acceptance will do more good for you.

For this quote, I’d re-write it to:

Note to self: Your friends, may or may not defend you in your absence.

Quote 4

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I think this stems from the old proverb ‘actions speak louder than words’. The meaning of this quote depends on the situation/context it is used in. The concern for me is when people use it in a generic way, especially when dealing with other people.

Not very long ago I also believed that ‘actions’ and ‘feelings’ give true interpretations of people’s characters, motives, and intentions. So, if I walk into a room where there are, say, three people and the actions of these people seem stand-offish and unwelcome, I interpret that as ‘they don’t like me’. It may or may not be true but I learned a valuable lesson from watching Schitt’s Creek and that is ‘people aren’t thinking about you the way you’re thinking about you’. Most of the time we interpret other people’s words and actions based on our own experiences, feelings and understanding and knowledge of the situation. A lot of drama is created by misunderstanding actions, words, and feelings. These could be quickly cleared up if people can just talk to each other openly and get on the same page about the issue. It doesn’t mean that you have to agree with each other, but having clarity about each other’s point of view can help prevent and cease disputes.

I would not do what this quote is suggesting. Both words and actions are important. I believe people can have a hard time putting their thoughts and feelings into words and putting those words into actions. Some can say very little but do a lot and vice versa. We interpret all things differently. Therefore Alexis’ way of showing kindness to a dog can be different to how David shows it. They are both right but they just do it differently. Moving forward, in whatever situation I think it is best to not make any assumptions and take all possible factors into consideration before putting labels or passing judgement on someone’s actions and words. It’s not easy but with practise we can discipline ourselves.

For this quote, I’d re-write it to:

One of the most important things in life is to hear what people say and learn from what they do.

~Sauturaga S.

Image credits: All quote images used have been taken from Pinterest

Daily prompt: Complication

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