I'm not one for the stylised quote-pics of insta fame. Nor deepsim when in simple text form on 𝕏. Let alone the abundance of vacuous koans drowning LinkedIn.
Yet 'tis the season for forgiveness. So in such spirit, here's a septupular selection of which I made note during the year past. With rare ability to make me double-check and take note.
Starting with the above stanza. Created by a poet who crafted a best-seller from a decade of following the ee cummings [yes, lower case] vibe of every single morning - before embarking on other work - writing, among other items, a new aphorism. In this case, fruits of his daily poem regimen;
If the phone won't ring, make a call
If the mountain won't move shift it
If the birds won't sing, sing to them all
And If the sun won't rise... lift it!
Then - how could it not be - there's this line of Shakespeare. Practically, a Brummie, y'know. Apparently from Measure For Measure;
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt".
I note the context in which I discovered this. Tennis ɢᴏᴀᴛ Djokovic success put down in part to understanding this ability for inevitable sabotage from internal worry. His angle being where self-doubt is not a weakness, but something to be accepted, managed and quelled.
Next, a proverb from N Africa (Morocco & Tunisia?); to get a problem to shrink, make it bigger. Alternatively written, ripe for an internal bid check and beyond;
to make a problem sʜʀɪɴᴋ, make it BIGGER !!
Then reminder on what underpins purpose. Does your collective endeavour have as Dr Martyn Newman sees? And further riff on the adage, 'culture eats strategy for breakfast';
“It’s not sticks or carrots that drive performance, it’s values. When you tap into the things that people feel, the things they deeply care about, you release inside them this most remarkable creative energy to achieve extraordinary things.”
John Cleese (via his Dinosaur Hour series, s01ᴇ04), and this beauty readily remixable for the fizz of buyer & seller solving a puzzle together;
‘Tom Stoppard, the great playwright, once said a beautiful thing, “The shortest distance between two people is a laugh”. And he’s right.’
From broadsheet journalism, via London Telegraph's Thom Gibbs, which ought ring around our head about pitches;
'A TV acquaintance who specialised in gameshows once told me that you always knew when a new format would not work if it took longer than a minute to explain the rules.'
Lastly, a more widely known one, from 'world's first billionaire', John D. Rockefeller, perhaps also applicable to when being bought from;
'I would rather hire a man with enthusiasm, than a man who knows everything'.