Archive | advice

Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I’d like to see you in better living conditions.

Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I’d like to see you in better living conditions. – Hafez of Persia What does that mean? While the English versions of Hafez’s verses are often considered more an approximation than a translation, I found this one to be quite interesting, and worthy of consideration, even if […]

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You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say.

You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say. – Martin Luther What does that mean? Most of us are pretty clear on the idea that we are responsible for our own words, and that what we say, we own. The classic example is yelling FIRE in […]

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Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards.

Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards. – Vern Law What does that mean? This is the testing method of the School of Hard Knocks, otherwise known as learning as you go.  Put another way, Experience is how you figure things out by trial and error. When you […]

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You’ve learned the lessons well. You first learned to live on less than you earn. Next you learned to seek advice from those who are competent. Lastly, you’ve learned to make gold work for you.

You’ve learned the lessons well. You first learned to live on less than you earn. Next you learned to seek advice from those who are competent. Lastly, you’ve learned to make gold work for you. – George S. Clason What does that mean? This, to me, is a sound basis for personal finance. But the […]

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No person is free who is not master of himself.

No person is free who is not master of himself. – Pythagoras What does that mean? This quote is usually attributed to Epictetus, but found in works attributed to Pythagoras, and stated as: “None can be free who is a slave to, and ruled by, his passions.” That makes the usual quote a little easier […]

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I am not ashamed to confess that I am ignorant of what I do not know.

I am not ashamed to confess that I am ignorant of what I do not know. – Cicero What does that mean? I’m sure you’ve heard it before. Someone brings up an interesting fact, and someone else is quick to say “I knew that!” How often do you believe them? Better yet, how often have […]

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Only the guy who isn’t rowing has time to rock the boat.

Only the guy who isn’t rowing has time to rock the boat. – Jean-Paul Sartre What does that mean? If you have ever rowed a boat, you know it’s a pretty intense job. Even something as simple as paddling a canoe keeps you busy most of the time. To ‘rock the boat’ is both a literal […]

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We are not trying to entertain the critics. I’ll take my chances with the public.

We are not trying to entertain the critics. I’ll take my chances with the public. – Walt Disney What does that mean? I think this is a great way to live our lives. No matter what we do, there will always be critics, people who don’t like what we are doing. So what. The most certain […]

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Don’t find fault, find a remedy.

Don’t find fault, find a remedy. – Henry Ford What does that mean? As an engineer, this is my pet peeve. People bring me things, and say “It’s broken,” and walk away. That’s not very helpful, is it? I don’t think so. The basic premise of the quote is that if you are bright enough to […]

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Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.

Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. – Maya Angelou What does that mean? We all have days when we like ourselves, and then there are days when we don’t. But if, on average, we don’t really like ourselves, it would be hard to consider ourselves a success. We all […]

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A man should be upright, not be kept upright.

A man should be upright, not be kept upright. – Marcus Aurelius What does that mean? At it’s heart, this quote is about a person and their character. It is a reminder that what we are on the inside is what we are seen as by others on the outside. The quote is usually interpreted […]

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Whatever is well said by another, is mine.

Whatever is well said by another, is mine. – Seneca What does that mean? Well, this is an interesting quote. One way to take it is to presume that he is taking other people’s quotes. In short, plagiarism. While I would recommend against outright stealing the work of others, the way humans work is to build […]

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Placing all our hope on material development is clearly mistaken; the ultimate source of happiness is within us.

Placing all our hope on material development is clearly mistaken; the ultimate source of happiness is within us. – Dalai Lama What does that mean? This is the age old statement, that our happiness is to be found not in the shiny things outside of us, but on the shiny things within us. No, not lost […]

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Practice yourself, for heaven’s sake in little things, and then proceed to greater.

Practice yourself, for heaven’s sake in little things, and then proceed to greater. – Epictetus What does that mean? This quote is also stated in a slightly older English, but with better punctuation (see 2nd link at bottom of this post): “Practice yourself, for heaven’s sake, in little things; and thence proceed to greater.” Let’s […]

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Silence is true wisdom’s best reply.

Silence is true wisdom’s best reply. – Euripides What does that mean? This quote is kind of short and out of context. That makes it very dependent on the situation. What I have experienced (from both sides of the quote) is that often times offering advice simply leads to an argument. You have a suggestion, a […]

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