I love inspirational quotes. Like, a lot. I have them hung up all over my office, my camera roll is stocked with screenshots of them, and I even have a side business selling watercolor versions of my favorite ones. But despite my deep love for a beautifully-worded nugget of wisdom, sometimes I get sucked into a k-hole of inspirational quotes on Pinterest and come stumbling out three hours later, dazed and overflowing with contradictory life advice. Browsing the “inspirational quotes” section of Pinterest often feels like having a forcefully positive conversation with an emotionally unstable friend. Kind of like this:
Pinterest: “Speak your mind, even if your voice shakes.”
Me: Yes! Thank you! I really needed that reminder to be brave and express myself even when it’s scary. Sometimes I feel like I hold back because I’m worried about what other people will think.
Pinterest: “Be careful with your words. Once they are said, they can only be forgiven, not forgotten.”
Me: Well, OK, yeah. I mean, I guess that’s true too. But just to be clear, are we speaking our minds no matter what, or are we carefully weighing our words to make sure we don’t offend anyone?
Pinterest: "People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Me: So focus on the feeling, not the words. Got it. Maybe don’t talk at all unless it’s totally necessary?
Pinterest: “Nothing haunts us like the things we don’t say.”
Me: That’s the opposite of what I just said, but OK.
Pinterest: "Raise your words, not your voice.”
Me: I wasn’t raising my voice. I’m just confused.
Pinterest: “Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.”
Me: Another great point! Although, as a general rule, I rarely drink poison or want other people to die.
Pinterest: “You have to die a few times before you can really live.”
Me: So maybe if you drank poison and the other person did die, you would kind of be doing them a favor? In a way? Because then they could finally really live? This is getting dark.
Pinterest: “The darkest nights provide the brightest stars.”
Me: Good point. I do love stargazing. Although sometimes the vastness of the universe makes me worry that my life is meaningless and insignificant.
Pinterest: “Worrying is like walking around with an umbrella waiting for it to rain.”
Me: So true! Fuck umbrellas!
Pinterest: “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”
Me: Wait, so maybe I should carry an umbrella, in case it rains and I want to dance?
Pinterest: “Don’t call it a dream. Call it a plan.”
Me: Definitely buying an umbrella.
Pinterest: “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”
Me: Ooh, totally writing that one down.
Pinterest: “A BROKEN CRAYON STILL COLORS.”
Me: Jesus, calm down. I have a pen.