Of all the young men in America only a few hundred can get into major league baseball, and of these only a handful in a decade can get into the Hall of Fame. So it goes in all human activity … Some become multimillionaires and chairmen of the board, and some of us must be content to play baseball at company picnics or manage a credit union without pay.
—William Feather (1889–1981) American Publisher, Author
Of all the infirmities we have, the most savage is to despise our being.
—Michel de Montaigne (1533–92) French Essayist
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
—Eleanor Roosevelt (1884–1962) American First Lady, Diplomat, Humanitarian
Be what you are and become what you are capable of becoming.
Take charge of your life – become the person you would like to be.
The deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated.
—William James (1842–1910) American Philosopher, Psychologist, Physician
Do not let your peace depend on the hearts of men; whatever they say about you, good or bad, you are not because of it another man, for as you are, you are.
—Thomas a Kempis (1379–1471) German Religious Priest, Writer
Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.
—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–82) American Poet, Educator, Academic
Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.
—Malcolm S. Forbes (1919–1990) American Publisher, Businessperson
As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live.
—Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) German Poet
To love others, we must first learn to love ourselves.
Healthy personalities accept themselves not in any self-idolizing way, but in the sense that they see themselves as persons who are worth giving to another and worthy to receive from another.
—William Glasser (b.1925) American Psychiatrist, Writer
Learn what you are and be such.
—Pindar (c.518–c.438 BCE) Greek Lyric Poet
At thirty a man should know himself like the palm of his hand, know the exact number of his defects and qualities … And above all, accept these things.
—Albert Camus (1913–60) Algerian-born French Philosopher, Dramatist, Essayist, Novelist, Author
If you want to be respected by others the great thing is to respect yourself. Only by that, only by self-respect will you compel others to respect you.
—Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821–81) Russian Novelist, Essayist, Writer
Man has to live with the body and soul which have fallen to him by chance.
—Jose Ortega y. Gasset (1883–1955) Spanish Critic, Journalist, Philosopher
I care not so much what I am in the opinion of others as what I am in my own; I would be rich of myself and not by borrowing.
—Michel de Montaigne (1533–92) French Essayist
Learn to … be what you are, and learn to resign with a good grace all that you are not.
—Henri Frederic Amiel (1821–81) Swiss Moral Philosopher, Poet, Critic
Whatever task you undertake, do it with all your heart and soul. Always be courteous, never be discouraged. Beware of him who promises something for nothing. Do not blame anybody for your mistakes and failures. Do not look for approval except the consciousness of doing your best.
—Bernard M. Baruch (1870–1965) American Financier, Economic Consultant
Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections, but instantly set about remedying them—every day begin the task anew.
—Francis de Sales (1567–1622) French Catholic Saint
What you think about yourself is much more important than what others think of you.
—Seneca the Younger (Lucius Annaeus Seneca) (c.4 BCE–65 CE) Roman Stoic Philosopher, Statesman, Tragedian
It is only fools who keep straining at high C all their lives.
—Charles Dudley Warner (1829–1900) American Essayist, Novelist
He who despises himself esteems himself as a self-despiser.
—Susan Sontag (1933–2004) American Writer, Philosopher
We would have to settle for the elegant goal of becoming ourselves.
—William Styron (1925–2006) American Novelist, Essayist, Writer
I was always willing to take a great deal of the burden of getting along in life on my own shoulders, but I wasn’t willing to give myself a pat on the back. I was always looking to somebody else to give me that … That was all wrong.
—Raquel Welch (b.1940) American Actress, Singer
She lacks confidence, she craves admiration insatiably. She lives on the reflections of herself in the eyes of others. She does not dare to be herself.
—Anais Nin (1903–77) French-American Essayist
The secret of my success is that at an early age I discovered I was not God.
—Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. (1841–1935) American Jurist, Author
Each of us has a day … when he has to accept, finally, the fact that he is a man.
—Jean Anouilh (1910–87) French Dramatist
You have to deal with the fact that your life is your life.
—Alex Haley (1921–92) American Novelist, Biographer
Nobody holds a good opinion of a man who has a low opinion of himself.
—Anthony Trollope (1815–82) English Novelist
A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.
—Mark Twain (1835–1910) American Humorist