Last year I went through one of the most difficult times of my life. Scratch that. It was the most difficult. I experienced an episode of mania and was diagnosed with Bipolar I. You can read a little more about that experience on my Begin Here page. I felt pretty hopeless at times, but in a fight for survival, I grasped onto any shred of hope that I could.
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These little shreds came about in the different forms including music, sunny days, and conversations with my kids and husband. I went through periods of secluding myself, and it was during these times when I turned to quotes to give me little bits of strength and inspiration.
Y’all, I had about a thousand of them saved to a Pinterest board. That doesn’t even include the ones I took screenshots of. Sometime later, while trying to clean up my phone gallery, I wondered what it is about sentences and short paragraphs comprised of other people’s words (who we most likely will never even meet) that seem to speak to our soul. Why does it seem that they brought those combinations of words into existence specifically for us?
Maybe because as humans we’re more connected than we realize? Our story may differ from those around us, but we all experience the same emotions, just at different intensities. We all want to be reassured that we’re not alone and that someone out there feels the same feels that we do. But, we don’t always get the opportunity to have conversations where the things we need to hear the most are said directly to us.
Sometimes we’re in a place where, emotionally, we aren’t able to make ourselves vulnerable enough for these conversations to occur. So, we turn to the written words of other humans to give us those aforementioned shreds of hope.
I also think that even when we do get the opportunity to have little bombs of wisdom spoken directly to our ears, we’re in’ listen to reply’ mode. That’s generally how conversation works. I speak. You speak. I speak. So, when I’m having a conversation with someone, I often find myself formulating a reply before they’re done speaking. I have an incredibly short attention span, so once this formulating begins, I’m not fully taking in everything that’s being said to me.
When I’m reading or scrolling through Pinterest and I come across that perfect little collaboration of words, I’m not in ‘listen to reply’ mode. I have a moment to consider what I’ve just read and be inspired or comforted by it.
I’m an avid quote reader and can easily spend an hour in a Pinterest induced rabbit hole. Motivational quotes. Love them. Quotes about confidence. Can’t resist pinning them. Quotes about strong women. My favorite. (Unless they in any way contain a hashtag followed by the words ‘girlboss’ or ‘bossbabe’, but that’s a topic for another day.)
Quotes are also great for provoking thoughts about new ideas we hadn’t considered. If they’re really powerful, they can even shift our way of thinking. Because of this, they serve as perfect journal prompts.
If you’re ready to continue going down a quote-filled rabbit hole check out these posts. They are full of motivational and thought-provoking words of wisdom.
For encouragement of a different variety: