I am a quote collector! Here are some of my favorite quotations on motherhood and life, drawn from my own work, and many other writers and thinkers.  — Amy

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better you did better." – Maya Angelou

"We are the hero of our own story." – Mary McCarthy

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one." – Jane Howard, "Families"

"Mother’s room, and mother’s need for privacy become a valuable lesson in respect for other people’s rights." – Doris Lessing

"Never apologize for showing feeling. When you do so, you apologize for the truth." – Benjamin Disraeli

"The place you are right now, God circled on a map for you." – Ibrahim Hafiz

"Children can’t be a center of life and a reason for being. They can be a thousand satisfying things that are delightful, interesting, satisfying, but they can’t be a well-spring to live from. Or they shouldn’t be." – Doris Lessing, "A Man and Two Women"

‘The most important thing she’d learned over the years was that there was no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one. -Jill Churchill, "Grime and Punishment"

"It’s easy to complain about our children. But when we want to express our joy, our love, the words elude us. The feelings are almost so sacred they defy speech." – Joan McIntosh

"Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice." – Martin Luther King Jr.

"We are the ones we have been waiting for." – President Barack Obama

"Being asked to decide between your passion for work and your passion for children was like being asked by your doctor whether you preferred him to remove your brain or your heart. – Mary Kay Blakeley, "American Mom"

"Children are natural Zen masters; their world is brand new in each and every moment. – John Bradshaw

"Eagles and hummingbirds, butterflies and bees know–there is more than one way to fly." – Amy Tiemann

“Done” is better than “perfect.” – Mom’s wisdom

"Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm." – Ralph Waldo Emerson

"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves. " Lao Tzu

"Success is not the result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire." – Reggie Leach

"Most of my ideas belonged to other people who didn’t bother to develop them." – Thomas Edison

"If you cannot find the truth right where you are, where else do you expect to find it?" – Dogen, Zen teacher

"Here’s the best piece of advice I’ve received about mothering a newborn: “What is familiar is preferred.” – New Moms’ educator Donna Erickson

"There are some things learned best in calm, and some in storm." – Willa Cather

"I believe that what woman resents is not so much giving herself in pieces as giving herself purposelessly." – Anne Morrow Lindbergh

"Be kinder to yourself than you think you should be." – Zen teacher Cheri Huber

"Perhaps parents would enjoy their children more if they stopped to realize the film of childhood can never be run through for a second showing." – Evelyn Nown

"Sit, walk, or run, but don’t wobble." – Zen proverb

Mojo is power. With it, you know that even if the rest of the world doesn’t always realize how amazing you are, you can move through it like a secret agent, armed with the confidence that your plans will succeed on your own terms." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"My boat struck something deep. Nothing happened. Sound, silence, waves. Nothing happened, or perhaps everything has happened, and I’m sitting in the middle of my new life. " – Juan Ramon Jiminez, Nobel Laureate

"The most beautiful sight in the world is a little child going confidently down the road of life after you have shown him the way." – Confucius

"Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding." – Kahlil Gibran

"You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star." – Friedrich Nietzsche

"Be Content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you." – Lao Tzu

"The best way out is always through." – Robert Frost

"If the only prayer you said in your life was "thank you," that would be sufficient." – Meister Eckhart

"I have three criteria to apply to any item trying to make its way onto my to-do list: Is the activity fun, meaningful, or absolutely necessary? If not, I give myself permission to say ‘No, I won’t be able to take that on.’" – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world." – Lucille Ball

"The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become." – Charles Du Bos

"If I really see you, I will laugh out loud, or fall silent, or explode into a thousand pieces. And if I don’t, I will be caught in the cement and stone of my own prison." – Rumi, 13th century Persian poet

"Motherhood is like Albania– you can’t trust the descriptions in the books, you have to go there." – Marni Jackson

"I cannot forget my mother. She is my bridge. When I needed to get across, she steadied herself long enough for me to run across safely." – Renita Weems

"With courage you will dare to take risks, have the strength to be compassionate, and the wisdom to be humble. Courage is the foundation of integrity." – Kevshavan Nair

"Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials." – Meryl Streep

"A mother’s love for her child is like nothing else in the world. It knows no law, no pity, it dares all things and crushes down remorselessly all that stands in its path " – Agatha Christie

"The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers." – Thich Nhat Hanh

"A child is a grenade. When you have a baby, you set off an explosion in your marriage, and when the dust settles, your marriage is different than what it was. Not better, necessarily; not worse, necessarily; but different." – Nora Ephron, "Heartburn"

"The value of marriage is not that adults produce children, but that children produce adults." – Peter de Vries, "The Tunnel of Love"

"The best conversations with mothers always take place in silence, when only the heart speaks." – Carrie Latet

"You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth." – Kahlil Gibran, "The Prophet"

"When people show you who they are, believe them." – Toni Morrison

"I love my mother as the trees love water and sunshine – she helps me grow, prosper, and reach great heights." – Adabella Radici

"Babies don’t need fathers, but mothers do. Someone who is taking care of a baby needs to be taken care of." – Amy Heckerling

"It’s not a matter of expecting less or expecting more, expecting the best or expecting the worst. Expecting anything just gets in the way of the experience itself. And the experience itself is a stunner." – Karen Maezen Miller, "Momma Zen"

"Letting go of a task is a valid option. You may as well start practicing it now, because there is always more work to be done than one person or family can humanly accomplish." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"Do not be too timid and squeamish about your reactions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better." – Ralph Waldo Emerson

"There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." – Anais Nin

"Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there." – Rumi, 13th century Persian poet

"Truth, which is important to a scholar, has got to be concrete. And there is nothing more concrete than dealing with babies, burps and bottles; frogs and mud." – Jeane Kirkpatrick

"Art is the only way to run away without leaving home." – Choreographer Twyla Tharp

"A sign that the Mojo Mom concept has caught on will be that Moms are able to fully support other women who have made different life-work choices." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"Before I got married I had six theories about bringing up children; now I have six children, and no theories." – Lord Rochester

"A single event can awaken within us a stranger totally unknown to us. To be alive is to be slowly born." – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

"We shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want." – Lao Tzu

"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

"How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in life you will have been all of these." – George Washington Carver

"I love people. I love my family, my children… but inside myself is a place where I live all alone and that’s where you renew your springs that never dry up." – Pearl S. Buck

"Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes." – Oscar Wilde, "Lady Windemere’s Fan"

"The most important point is to accept yourself and stand on your two feet." – Shunryu Suzuki

"She never quite leaves her children at home, even when she doesn’t take them along. " – Margaret Culkin Banning

"One doesn’t discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time." – Andre Gide

"The days are long but the years are short." – Mom’s wisdom

"To see a World in a Grain of Sand – And Heaven in a Wild Flower- Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand – And Eternity in an hour." – William Blake, "Auguries of Innocence"

"Mother’s love is peace. It need not be acquired, it need not be deserved." – Erich Fromm

"The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook." – William James

"A man is not a financial plan." – WIFE.org, the Women’s Institute for Financial Education

"Keeping house is like threading beads on a string with no knot at the end." – Anonymous

"In business as in life, you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate." – Chester Karrass, master negotiator

"I read and walked for miles at night along the beach… searching endlessly for someone wonderful who would step out of the darkness and change my life. It never crossed my mind that that person could be me." – Anna Quindlen

"You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down." – Annie Dillard

"You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but you Can’t Fool Mom." – Captain Penny, 1950’s kid show host

"There is a lot more to being a woman than being a mother, but there is a hell of a lot more to being a mother than most people suspect." – Roseanne Barr

"Family life is often about finding a way to make peace with chaos, rather than making the chaos go away. Some of the most enjoyable times with our kids happen when we learn to go with the flow." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning." – Louis L’Amour

"Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes." – Carl Jung

"The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change." – Carl Rogers

"It doesn’t work to leap a twenty-foot chasm in two ten-foot jumps." – American Proverb

"The only person who never makes mistakes is the person who never does anything." – Denis Waitley

"Security is mostly a superstition….Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." – Helen Keller

"I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning how to sail my ship." – Louisa May Alcott

"There can be no vulnerability without risk; there can be no community without vulnerability; there can be no peace, and ultimately no life, without community." – M. Scott Peck

"It’s not so much that we’re afraid of change or so in love with the old ways, but it’s that place in between that we fear… It’s like being between trapezes. It’s Linus when his blanket is in the dryer. There’s nothing to hold on to." – Marilyn Ferguson

"Nurture your mind. Love it, care for it, allow it to play and roam freely. As we have nurtured our children, let us give the same loving care to ourselves as well." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." – Mark Twain

"Restlessness and discontent are the first necessities of progress." – Thomas Edison

"Love life and life will love you back. Love people and they will love you back." – Arthur Rubenstein

"The major block to compassion is the judgment in our minds. Judgment is the mind’s primary tool of separation." – Diane Berke

"Compassion literally means to feel with, to suffer with. Everyone is capable of compassion, and yet everyone tends to avoid it because it’s uncomfortable. And the avoidance produces psychic numbing — resistance to experiencing our pain for the world and other beings." – Joanna Macy

"When you begin to touch your heart or let your heart be touched, you begin to discover that it’s bottomless, that it doesn’t have any resolution, that this heart is huge, vast, and limitless. You begin to discover how much warmth and gentleness is there, as well as how much space." – Pema Chodron

"And so our mothers and grandmothers have, more often than not anonymously, handed on the creative spark, the seed of the flower they themselves never hoped to see — or like a sealed letter they could not plainly read." – Alice Walker

"Women do not have to sacrifice personhood if they are mothers. They do not have to sacrifice motherhood in order to be persons. Liberation was meant to expand women’s opportunities, not to limit them. The self-esteem that has been found in new pursuits can also be found in mothering." – Elaine Heffner

"At work, you think of the children you have left at home. At home, you think of the work you’ve left unfinished. Such a struggle is unleashed within yourself. Your heart is rent." – Golda Meir

"One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries." – A. A. Milne

"The creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself." – Alan Alda

"We need to debunk “work-life balance.” It’s not about continuing an impossible balancing act. What we need is a stronger support system." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"You can never solve a problem on the level on which it was created." – Albert Einstein

"All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up." – Pablo Picasso

"The things we fear most in organizations — fluctuations, disturbances, imbalances — are the primary sources of creativity." – Margaret J. Wheatley

"Your theory is crazy, but it’s not crazy enough to be true." – Niels Bohr

"Creativity comes from trust. Trust your instincts. And never hope more than you work." – Rita Mae Brown

"Creativity arises out of the tension between spontaneity and limitations, the latter (like the river banks) forcing the spontaneity into the various forms which are essential to the work of art or poem." – Rollo May

"I have trusted to my intuition to find the subjects, and I have written intuitively. I have an idea when I start, I have a shape; but I will fully understand what I have written only after some years." – V. S. Naipaul

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." – Eleanor Roosevelt

"When they tell you to grow up, they mean stop growing." – Tom Robbins

"The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new." – Rajneesh

"The next message you need is always right where you are." – Ram Dass

"Becoming a mother makes you the mother of all children. From now on each wounded, abandoned, frightened child is yours. You live in the suffering mothers of every race and creed and weep with them. You long to comfort all who are desolate." – Charlotte Gray

"Making the decision to have a child–it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." – Elizabeth Stone

"Pregnancy doubled her, birth halved her, and motherhood turned her into Everywoman." – Erica Jong, "Parachutes and Kisses"

"The only thing which seems to me to be eternal and natural in motherhood is ambivalence. – Jane Lazarre, "The Mother Knot"

"It’s important for people should know what you stand for. It’s equally important that they should know what you won’t stand for." – Mary L. Waldrip

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one." – Jane Howard, "Families"

"The best security blanket a child can have is parents who respect each other. – Jan Blaustone, "The Joy of Parenthood"

"The greatest tragedy of the family is the unlived lives of the parents." – Carl Jung

"Be aware of the “danger zone” warning signs of “HALT:” being hungry, angry, lonely, or tired. We must make self-care, sleep, healthy emotional outlets, and nurturing friendships major priorities." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”

"There are three ways to get things done: do it yourself, hire someone to do it, or forbid your kids to do it." – Monta Crane

"When Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. " – Mom’s wisdom

"Where has all this talk of mojo led us? This fuel, magic, energy, creative spirit—where will it take us? That is up to you." – Amy Tiemann, “Mojo Mom”