Some Thoughts on Personal Renewal

I just read “Personal Renewal” by John Gardner. To learn more about John Gardner, click here.

I found so many parts of his speech enlightening. I hope you will take the time to read it. To give you a sense of what it encompasses, I’ve included a few of my favorite quotes below:

  • It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.
  • You come to understand that most people are neither for you nor against you, they are thinking about themselves.
  • There are some things you can’t learn from others. You have to pass through the fire.
  • At the end of every road you meet yourself.
  • We want to believe that there is a point at which we can feel that we have arrived. We want a scoring system that tells us when we’ve piled up enough points to count ourselves successful.
  • The nature of one’s personal commitments is a powerful element in renewal.
  • You have to build meaning into your life, and you build it through your commitments.
  • People of every age need commitments beyond the self, need the meaning that commitments provide. Self-preoccupation is a prison, as every self-absorbed person finally knows. Commitments to larger purposes can get you out of prison.
  • Failure is simply a reason to strengthen resolve.
  • Meaning is not something you stumble across, like the answer to a riddle or the prize in a treasure hunt. Meaning is something you build into your life.

I find this piece applicable to every context, whether it be personal renewal, striving for optimal sport performance, or career transitions. What is your favorite quote and what does it mean to you?

Picture from here.

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