Inspiration

Click here to listen to Creativity Australia’s theme song, All That I Can Be.

“Let the first impulse pass. Wait for the second.” Baltasar Gracian
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.Arthur C. Clarke

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” Mark Twain.

“I’ve come to believe that things are getting better and better and worse and worse, faster and faster. simultaneously.” Tom Atlee

“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.” Leonardo da Vinci

We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope.” Martin Luther King

Do not wait to strike until the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.” William B. Sprague

“When the limited mind enters blessed companionship with the limitless Mind, indescribable freedom dawns.” Tilopa

“Walking the grounds of Gratitude, I came upon the Palace of Happiness.”

“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more.” Oprah Winfrey

“It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

“Nothing is easier than saying words. Nothing is harder than living them day after day.”  Arthur Gordo

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” George Bernard Shaw 

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Neale Donald Walsch

“We give thanks for singers,
All types of singers,
Popular, concert singers and tuneless singers in the bath.
Whistlers, hummers and those who sing while they work.
Singers of lullabies; singers or nonsense and small scrap of melody.
Singers on branches and rooftops.
Morning yodellers and evening warblers.
Singers in seedy nightclubs; and singers in the street;
Singers in cathedrals, school halls, grandstands, back yards,
paddocks, bedrooms, corridors, stairwells and places of echo and resonance.
We give praise to all those who give some small voice
To the everyday joy of the soul.
Amen”
Michael Leunig

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Dr Wayne Dyer

“There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.” Victor Hugo

“When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this: you haven’t.” Thomas Edison

“I always thought someone should do something, until one day I realised I was someone.” J.F.Kennedy

“There’s no passion to be found in playing small – in settling for a life that is less than what you are capable of living.” Nelson Mandela

“Daring ideas are like chessmen moved forward: they may be beaten, but they may start a winning game.” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.” Antoine de St-Exupery

“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.” Socrates

“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” Joseph C. Pearce

“Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.” Pope John XXIII

“You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him discover it in himself.” Galileo

“I’ve come to believe that each of us has a personal calling that’s as unique as a fingerprint – and that the best way to succeed is to discover what you love and then find a way to offer it to others in the form of service, working hard, and also allowing the energy of the universe to lead you.” Oprah Winfrey

“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” Leonardo da Vinci

“The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.” Michelangelo

“Everything is energy & that’s all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want & you cannot help but get that reality. It can be no other way. This is not philosophy. This is physics.” Albert Einstein

“Iron rusts from disuse, stagnant water loses its purity and in cold, water becomes frozen; so does inaction sap the vigours of the mind.” Leonardo da Vinci

“Whether you think you can or think you can’t you are right.” Henry Ford

“No personal god need be worshipped for us to be amazed at the magnificence of creation.” Dame Elisabeth Murdoch AC DBE

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” Nelson Mandela

“In theory there’s no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is.” Yogi Berra

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

“To sing is to give the earth a spiritual blessing.” Anon

“We do not doubt that there are needs which run deeper than words, deeper even than thought, and that some of them may be reached by the power of music.” 1977 Grace Church Newsletter, via Stacy Horn

“When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness because a capella and choir singing is all about the immersion of the self into the community. That’s one of the great feelings – to stop being me for a little while and to become us. That way lies empathy, the great social virtue.” Brian Eno

“I believe that singing is the key to long life, a good figure, a stable temperament, increased intelligence, new friends, super self-confidence, heightened sexual attractiveness, and a better sense of humor.” Brian Eno

“When you’re singing, you’re using extra muscles, and it requires a lot of exercise and breathing. You can’t do that if you’re a sissy. If I have any fitness advise for people, I’d tell them to sing more. It’s good therapy, too!” Willie Nelson

“If you hear a voice within you say, ‘You are not a painter,’ then by all means paint…and that voice will be silenced.” Vincent Van Gogh Note: that applies to singing and everything else in life!

“What you are is what you have been. Who you will be is what you do now.” Buddha

“You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honor.” Aristotle

“Let’s embrace failure! Try and fail, but don’t fail to try.” Stephen Kaggwa

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in the future.” Steve Jobs

“You pray in your distress and in your need; would that you might also pray in the fullness of your joy and in your days of abundance.” Kahlil Gibran

“The seduction of safety is always more dangerous than the illusion of uncertainty.” Robin Sharma

“We are all just walking each other home.” Ram Dass

“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” Gandhi

“Of all the practical experiments suggested in this book for learning about the mind and life, I think singing songs works best.” Lloyd Fell, Mind and Love: The Human Experience (2010)

“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more.” H. Jackson Brown, Jr

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Winston Churchill

“Challenge yourself with something you know you could never do, and what you’ll find is that you can overcome anything.” Anon

“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.” Lao Tzu

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.” Martin Luther King 

“The pessimist complains about the wind, an optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.”  William A Ward

“When you do what you fear most, then you can do anything.” Stephen Richards

“Music touches us emotionally, where words alone can’t.” Johnny Depp

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” Dr. Seuss

“Success is in direct proportion to your commitment to excellence and love of what you do, regardless of your chosen endeavour.” Vince Lombardi

“Dream as big as you can dream and anything is possible.” Michael Phelps

” Time means so much more to me now than it did.  These days, keenly aware of wasted time, I hear the clock ticking more insistently……… Show me something new, something different, something changed, something wonderful, something weird ! …..Was I where I wanted to be, doing what I loved? The answer was sometimes yes, sometimes Where am I?  But more often it was What am I doing here?” Paul Theroux

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” Winston Churchill

“When we live in the past we’re depressed, when we live in the future we’re anxious and when we live in the present we are at peace. Singing brings us into the present.” Tania de Jong AM, based on an old Chinese philosophy

“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language; and next year’s words await another voice.” T.S. Eliot

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” Nelson Mandela

“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.” Oscar Wilde

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” Mahatma Gandhi

“No personal God need be worshipped for us to be amazed at the magnificence of creation.” The Late Dame Elisabeth Murdoch

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift. The rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honours the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Albert Einstein

“The future is not something we enter. The future is something we create.” Leonard I. Sweet

“The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” Theodore Hook

“I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.” Plato

“Creativity is intelligence having fun.” Albert Einstein

“Time means so much more to me now than it did.  These days, keenly aware of wasted time, I hear the clock ticking more insistently […] Show me something new, something different, something changed, something wonderful, something weird! […] Was I where I wanted to be, doing what I loved? The answer was sometimes yes, sometimes “Where am I?”  But more often it was “What am I doing here?””  Paul Theroux

“I have more respect for the fellow with a single idea who gets there than for the fellow with a thousand ideas who does nothing.” Thomas Edison

“Many of life’s failures are experienced by people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” Thomas Edison

“My spirit is all harmony and Rhythm: Everything in my being is music and song, From the saddest requite of tears To the triumphal melody of joy.” Latino Oral tradition

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back… Concerning all acts of initiative there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too… All sorts of things occur to help you, that would otherwise never have occurred. A whole stream of events from the decision… come your way. Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” Goethe

“Alas for those that never sing, but die with all their music in them!” Oliver Wendell Holmes

“Knowledge is power.” Francis Bacon

“Chance favours the connected mind.” Steven Johnson

“Man’s main task in life is to give birth to himself.” Erich Fromm

“A recent IBM poll of 1,500 CEOs identified creativity as the No. 1 ‘leadership competency’ of the future.” The Creativity Crisis

“If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it.”Albert Einstein

‘We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.’ Anais Nin

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Albert Einstein

“Is creativity some obscure, esoteric art form? Not on your life. It’s the most practical thing a business person can employ.” Bill Bernbach

“Creativity is imaginative activity with outcomes that are both original and of value.”

“Creativity produces innovation through connecting things not previously connected. It empowers people as new connections are made in the mind. It generates wealth and employment as new connections are made within business. It enriches society as new connections are made between people.”

“The significant problems we face today cannot be solved by the level of thinking we were at when we created them.” Albert Einstein

“Victory is not final. Defeat is not failure. It’s all about courage.” Winston Churchill

“Creative thinking is not a talent; it is a skill that can be learnt. It empowers people, adding strength to their natural abilities, which…improves teamwork, productivity and where appropriate profits.” Edward de Bono

“For a business person, the numbers are the measure of success. If we don’t have the numbers, that’s the end of the conversation. But if we don’t have the conversations that’s the end of the numbers. It’s a paradox.”
Yves Bastien, President Sanofi–Synthelabo, Canada

“A profound change is taking place in the organisations that are seriously concerned about the future of business and society as they are realising that ‘rational man’ is giving way to ‘artful human’.” Lotte Darsø, in her book, ‘Artful Creation’

“Creativity can solve almost any problem. The creative act, the defeat of habit by originality, overcomes everything” George Lois

“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star” Friedrich Nietzsche

“Sing like no one’s listening, love like you’ve never been hurt, dance like nobody’s watching, and live like it’s heaven on earth.”
Mark Twain

“Everyone has simply by existing, a right to be intelligent. And to be provided with a way to become consistently more intelligent. This is a right that must be recognised and held sacred. Above all, the necessary conditions for the exercise of this right must be available. This is society’s mission and primary obligation of its leaders. All of them.” Luis Machado

“Creativity, in today’s world, is an undeniable force. The impulse that leads people to write, to sing, to dance, to paint –to be active, in the sense of making and celebrating culture -is born of the same desire that causes people to participate, to innovate and create in diverse fields of human activity, and indeed oftentimes to make a wider contribution.” The Hon Peter Garrett AM MP  

“Every human being is creative. Creative capital is a limitless resource. Each of us has creative potential that we strive to exercise, and that can be turned to valuable ends. The great challenge of our time will be to spark and stoke the creative furnace inside every human being.” Richard Florida

“My aim in innovation is not to flood the country with shiny gadgets, but to change the culture. Of course we will need new technologies to answer the challenges and grasp the opportunities that lie before us. But we will also need new institutions, new forms of community – new ways of understanding ourselves and our world. In all of this, the humanities, arts and social sciences are critical.” Senator the Hon. Kim Carr

“The very idea that there is another idea is something gained.” Richard Jeffries

“Creative thinking may simply mean the realization that there’s no particular virtue in doing things the way they have always been done.” Rudolph Flesch

“The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance; it is the illusion of knowledge.” Daniel Boorstin

“When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.” John Ruskin

“Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary.” Sir Cecil Beaton

“As human beings, our greatest achievement lies not in remaking the world, but in remaking ourselves.” Mohandas Ghandi

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” Maya Angelou

“There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” Einstein

“Creative minds have always been known to survive any kind of bad training.” Anna Freud

“Conditions for creativity are: to be puzzled, to concentrate, to accept conflict and tension, to be born everyday, to feel a sense of self.” Erich Fromm

“We are not in a position in which we have nothing to work with. We already have capacities, talents, directions, missions, callings.” Abraham Maslow

“A mind that is stretched to a new idea never returns to its original dimension.” Oliver Wendell Holmes Senior

“To the extent a person makes, invents or thinks something that is new to him, he may be said to have performed a creative act.” Margaret Mead

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” Anais Nin

“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” Joseph Campbell

“Creativity: a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.” Arthur Koestler

“Creativity has got to start with humanity and when you’re a human being, you feel, you suffer.” Marilyn Monroe

‘A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.’ Margaret Mead

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson

“To laugh often and love much; to win the respect of intelligent persons and the affection of children; to earn the approbation of honest citizens and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to give of one’s self; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sung with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived—this is to have succeeded.” Bessie Anderson Stanley (frequently misattributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson)

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“Why do they always teach us that it’s easy and evil to do what we want and that we need discipline to restrain ourselves? It’s the hardest thing in the world–to do what we want. And it takes the greatest kind of courage. I mean, what we really want.” Ayn Rand

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” Oscar Wilde

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.” Jack Kerouac, On the Road

‘You must be the change you want to see in the world.’ Mahatma Gandhi

“The problem is never how to get new, innovative thoughts into your mind, but how to get old ones out.” Dee Hock

“Creativity is not an escape from disciplined thinking. It is an escape with disciplined thinking.” Jerry Hirshberg

“Rather than denying problems, focus inventively, intentionally on what solutions might look or feel like. Our mind is meant to generate ideas that help us escape circumstantial traps – if we trust it to do so.” Marsha Sinetar

“If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to treat everything as if it were a nail.” Abraham Maslow

“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not one bit simpler.” Einstein

“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self evident.”Arthur Schopenhauer

“Just for today, I will be unafraid. Especially I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful, and to believe that as I give to the world, the world will give to me.” Anonymous 

“It is not the years in your life, but the life in your years.” Anonymous

“We do not remember years, we remember moments.” Anonymous

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take; but by the moments that take our breath away.” Anonymous

“Discover your possibilities.” Dr Robert Schuller

“The greatest crime in the world is not developing your true potential. When you do what you do best, you are helping not only yourself, but the world.” Roger Williams

“If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.” Thomas Edison

“There has never been another you. With no effort on your part, you were born to be something very special and set apart. What are you going to do in appreciation of that gift is a decision only you can make.” Dan Zadra

“Caution! The left-brained world wants you to “be realistic”…”quit dreaming”…”get your head out of the clouds”…”get your feet on the ground”…and “be just like us.” To advance and prosper steadfastly ignore that advice.” Marilyn Grey

“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” George Bernard Shaw

“There is always music amongst the trees in the garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it.” Minnie Aumonie

“Perhaps many more of us could hear inner melodies, find guidance and inspiration, achieve breakthrough insight, if we would only pay more attention to the fleeting images and the quiet intuition presented to us by the creative mind.” Wills Harmen 

“Creativity is the process of bringing something new into being…creativity requires passion and commitment. Out of the creative act is born symbols and myths. It brings to our awareness what was previously hidden and points to new life. The experience is one of heightened consciousness-ecstasy.” Rollo May, The Courage to Create

“A product is creative when it is (a) novel and (b) appropriate. A novel product is original not predictable. The bigger the concept, and the more the product stimulates further work and ideas, the more the product is creative.” Sternberg and Lubart

‘Complexity should not be viewed as a burden to be avoided; we see it as a catalyst and an accelerator to create innovation and new ways of delivering value.’ Juan Ramon Alaix

“Traditionally, right-brain dominant people have been labeled creative and left-brain dominant people have been regarded as logical and rigid. Today we know that both right and left-brain preferences can think and act creatively. We all have a unique way of dealing with our creativity. You may not even be aware of the fact that you have the ability to think creatively. The fact is, we are faced with challenges every day and we often deal with them by doing something new, something different, without even realising that it’s unique at the time. You may have discovered a way of making a dull task more agreeable, or you may have started to handle someone in the workplace in a different way, with good results. Without realising it, you have probably been creative quite often. Here are a few facts to remember:

  • Creativity implies whole brain thinking
  • Creativity and negativity do not go together
  • Creativity can be taught and learned
  • Creativity is a matter of breaking down barriers and coping with life, and not only acquiring skills and techniques.”  Kobus Neethling 

“The part of the mind
That once held poems is
Now used for storing
Passwords

The part of the mind
That once remembered
Songs is now used for
Storing pin numbers

The part of the mind that
Once helped us to hold
Each other is now used
For processing media content

The part of the mind that
Once had no apparent function
It’s still as mysterious as ever
It’s our greatest hope.” Leunig

“Some people see things as they are and say why? I dream of things that never were and say, why not? I don’t believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the ones who get up and look for the circumstances they want and if they don’t find them, make them.” George Bernard Shaw

“The pessimist complains about the wind, an optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” William Arthur Ward

“The Dalai Lama, when asked what surprised him most about humanity, answered ‘Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.'” The Dalai Lama

“Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding. Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.” Kahlil Gibran

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

“Never to suffer would never to have been blessed.” Edgar Allan Poe

“When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.” Haruki Murakami

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger–something better, pushing right back.” Albert Camus

“You don’t develop courage by being happy in your relationships every day. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.” Epicurus

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” Napoleon Hill

“They tried to bury us, but they didn’t know that we were seeds.” Mexican Proverb

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