If I were to meet one philosopher from the past, I think Confucius would be the one. So much wisdom was in him, as obvious by all the Confucius quotes out there. Some of his beliefs are a little outdated, but still, he was wiser in his time than most people living in this time! The fact is that Confucius quotes can help you become wiser. Following are 20 that everyone can benefit from.
1. Steady And Slow Wins The Race
Most of us know the story about the Tortoise and the Hare. If you are not familiar, the Tortoise challenges the Hare to a race and ends up winning because the overconfident Hare takes a nap. The lesson in that story, and in this Confucius quote, is that you have to keep on going, no matter what. Don’t give up. Don’t get cocky. Don’t stop to take a really long nap! Don’t worry about how long you are taking. One step at a time will get you to your destination, always.
2. Here’s How To Get Other People’s Respect
If you feel disrespected in your life, then you may want to take a look at how much you respect yourself. We all teach other people how to treat us, so if you disrespect yourself, then others will do the same. On the other hand, if you respect yourself a great deal, then other people will think that you deserve their respect. They will automatically have a higher opinion of you. You can respect yourself more by living by your ethics, understanding who you are and being OK with it, and speaking positively about yourself instead of negatively.
3. Work Should Be Fun
Are you one of those people who hate your job? Then you are not doing the right thing for work. Consider how much of your life will be spent doing work, and then consider whether you want to spend that time being miserable or feeling like you are engaging in a hobby that happens to make you money. If you choose the latter, then it is time to figure out what job would really give you the pleasure that you want out of life and then figure out a way to get it. There is no wrong answer. If something that bores other people excites you, then you will love what you do and work time will be much more rewarding.
4. Stop Being So Bossy
We are great at telling other people how to act and behave. We are awesome at telling other people what to believe. But we are not so great at behaving in the way that we preach. It is dishonest to claim that someone needs to do something that you don’t do yourself. This happens a lot in intimate relationships. One person will get mad at the other person for not doing something that they don’t do either! It’s ridiculous, and we need to be mindful of practicing what we preach.
5. What Do Your Mistakes Mean?
This is one of those Confucius quotes that can be taken in two different ways.
First, if you avoid problems, or even potential problems, then you are not going to make a mistake. But is that the way you really want to live? The people who are living – really trying to make something out of their lives and reach a new potential that they have – are the people who make mistakes. So, if you are annoyed by someone who makes mistakes in life, you may want to view them in a different light.
Second, people who take the time to plan and think things through will have less chance of failing than someone who jumps in without consideration of how to have the most success. In other words, people who are constantly making mistakes may not be thinking things through as much as people who make fewer mistakes, even though they are trying just as hard. I think that this explanation of this quote is important to remember in life. While jumping in can sometimes get you the prize, there are certain things that take some planning and time in order to work out well with minimal mistakes and time wasted.
6. Think Before You Speak
Fights and hurt feelings can easily be avoided by thinking before you speak. Even when strong emotions, such as anger, come up, it is important to think about what your reaction will do to yourself and to the people around you. By the way, nothing good comes out of anger. The words you say and actions you take will always be unhealthy, and you will regret them later on.
7. Let Go Of The Negative People From Your Past
Don’t hold on to the negative people in your life who cause you physical or mental harm. Don’t give them that kind of power over your life! If you do, you will stay stuck in the period where they were doing you harm and your present life will be affected negatively because of it. Do, however, remember the kind people in your life. Those memories will boost your confidence and make you a kinder person.
8. Your Goodness Is Built In
We think that we will be kinder to ourselves and to other people when we get or achieve something, but the truth is that it is already a part of us. All we have to do is look for it and acknowledge it. This is where awareness comes in. When you are able to look past regret, guilt, or longing, and recognize the power inside of you right now, you will be able to see that if you want to be good in all aspects, you can choose to do so because you have the power to do so.
9. Change Is Important!
Change means growth, which means more success, happiness, and better health. If you think you don’t need to change, then you better decide which one you are: wise or stupid. If you don’t feel very wise, then – well, you know the answer to that. The truth is that not changing keeps you stuck in an unintelligent state. You become ignorant to life because you are stuck in your own beliefs and perceptions and you can’t see past them. If you want to be more intelligent – more able to understand why and how to do things, then change.
10. Surround Yourself With Talented People
Don’t surround yourself with people beneath you to feel better about yourself. Surround yourself with people better than you to become better than you are now. The people who know more than you can help you have realizations about yourself and your life that help you become happier and more successful. Therefore, don’t get defensive when you are not as smart, talented, or thoughtful as someone else; instead, get excited to grow!
11. Let It Go
Bad things happen all the time. You are used in some way. You are cheated on. You are left to fend for yourself. All of these things can and will happen if you put yourself out there. But, they can’t affect your life in the long run unless you allow them too. In other words, if you constantly focus on the bad that has happened to you, then it is going to affect your life in a really big way. But if you let it go, then it will have no impact on your life whatsoever.
12. Stop Complaining About Who You Are
If you are not happy with yourself, stop complaining. Instead, do things that make you happy with yourself. Complaining will get you a headache and push away all of your friends, while doing something will give you the rewards that you are looking for.
13. The Choice Is Always Clear
There will be times when you will see something that you need to do, but avoid doing it because of laziness, fear, or indifference, and that is when you are at your weakest. If you see something that you need to do because it is the right thing to do, then do it. It will make you stronger in the long run and help you continue to make the right choices in the future.
14. Life Isn’t That Hard
It’s all about perception. We often make things harder than they need to be. This is one of those Confucius quotes from a time that didn’t seem to be as stressful as it is today, but applies just as perfectly today as it did back then. Don’t label things with words like ‘horrible’ or ‘impossible’. Don’t make things worse than they are. Take it moment by moment and life will become much simpler.
15. Beauty Is Everywhere
Someone said that beauty is a thing seldom seen, but I don’t understand where they were looking. I can see beauty in everyone and everything that I look at. Every human is a work of art. Every animal is beautiful to look at. Everything in nature offers us a sight that has actually brought people (including me) to tears. Take the time to really look at people, nature, animals, things, and notice the colors, shapes, or flow. Notice how beautiful one thing really is and you will start to see it everywhere.
16. Don’t Waste A Moment Of Life
If you are going to visit friends, then make the most of that time. If you are going to work, then put your best effort in so you can feel like you did a job well done. If you are going on a vacation, be present and enjoy everything that happens, good or bad, along the way. Put your all into everything that you do and you will never feel like you wasted a moment in your life.
17. Get Back Up
When life punches you hard, that is not a failure. A real failure would not be getting back up and moving forward. When you have the courage to get back up in life, you will feel amazing about yourself, more so than you would if you were to never fail at all.
18. Be Honest With Yourself And Others
Don’t lie to yourself about what you want or who you are. Sincerity is the key to great happiness. Honesty helps you be good to yourself and to others. So whether you take this quote literally and think about getting into heaven by being honest, or not so literally and think about living a life of heaven on Earth, sincerity is the key.
19. Ask Away!
Remember when you were in school and were made fun of for asking questions? That’s where we learned that asking questions is a bad thing. But the truth is that asking questions means you are curious about life, which means that you are going to find out more about life than someone who has no questions, or who is afraid to ask them. So go ahead and get curious! If you want to learn more and be wiser, questions will help you do it.
20. Want To Know The Future? You Can!
This is one of those Confucius quotes where I’ve seen a few different interpretations. But I think this quote can be applied to your own life and being able to predict how everything is going to work. For instance, do you want to achieve a health goal? Look back at your beliefs and habits around health and where you are today with your health. If you continue on with those same beliefs and habits, then you will still be in this place for health 6 months down the line. But if you change your beliefs and habits, then your future will be full of change too. Moreover, study how other people have succeeded in their health goals and copy their past!