I’ve always been a bit of a ‘collector’ of inspirational quotes and idols, people to admire and look up to, and, in any way possible, learn from. Too many people choose the wrong sort of idols now days, celebrities who have too much of a tendency to get caught with drugs, stumbling around drunk, crashing their expensive cars and generally setting a bad example.
Most of my idols are, and have always been, entrepreneurs, and yet while so many people have heard of their companies, so few can name a single founder’s name, besides a few of the ‘A list’ entrepreneurs, such as Richard Branson, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. I’ve always been someone who wants to be a ‘business polymath’, rather than purely focusing on photography, or design, or writing. There are so many things I wish to do, notebooks full of business ideas. I’m a big dreamer, but I know my strengths and my weaknesses – I’m creative. My creativity completely engulfs the rest of my personality, in fact. However, I’m having to work heard to learn about the business side of things. I’m not sure that I believe that some people are born with the instinctive knowledge required for building a business empire, but if such a person exists, I most certainly am not one of them. That said, I’m intelligent, I’m hard working, and I make the most of my library card, my kindle, I’m always contacting the right people with the right knowledge, picking their brains, and slowly, I’m improving.
Here are a few of my favourite quotes from a few of my entrepreneurial idols. Hopefully someone will be blogging about my business(es) one day.
To be free is not to have the power to do anything you like; it is to be able to surpass the given toward an open future.
-Simone de Beauvoir. Writer, philosopher, political activist.
Abandon anything about your life and habits that might be holding you back. Learn to create your own opportunities. Know that there is no finish line; fortune favors action. Race balls-out toward the extraordinary life that you’ve always dreamed of, or still haven’t had time to dream up.
-Sophia Amoruso. Founder of Nasty Gal.
I think you can be a jack-of-all-trades and a mistress-of-all-trades. If you study it, and you put reasonable intelligence and reasonable energy, reasonable electricity to it, you can do that.
-Maya Angelou. Author, dancer, actress, singer.
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might has well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.
-JK Rowling. Author.
Nobody talks about entrepreneurship as a survival, but that’s exactly what it is and what nurtures creative thinking. Running that first shop taught me business is not financial science; it’s about trading: buying and selling.
-Anita Roddick. Founder of The Body Shop, human rights and environmental activist.
The more you trust your intuition, the more empowered you become, the stronger you become, and the happier you become.
-Gisele Bundchen. Model, actress, producer, entrepreneur.
The thing about us, is we think big. Huge.
-Mary Kate Olsen. Fashion designer, entrepreneur.
I will never stop working. I want to have something to do. When you work, you’re taking part in life.
-Ashley Olsen. Fashion designer, entrepreneur.
The lesson that I have learned in life is that we should try and try and try again – but never give up.
-Richard Branson. Founder of the Virgin brand, entrepreneur.
Don’t worry about being successful but work towards being significant and the success will naturally follow.
-Oprah. TV host, producer, entrepreneur.
How many cares one loses when one decides not to be something but to be someone.
-Coco Chanel. Fashion designer, Founder of the Chanel brand.
Life-fulfilling work is never about the money – when you feel true passion for something, you instinctively find ways to nurture it.
-Eileen Fisher. Fashion designer.
Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential.
-Winston Churchill, former British Prime Minister, author, historian, artist.