Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Quotes from "Yes, Please"

I read Amy Poehler's book, "Yes, Please," on Saturday afternoon. It was funny and surprisingly poignant. She is no joke and very insightful! Lots of what she said really resonated with me this week. I bookmarked pages to copy the quotes from. Here are my favorites:

On looks:

“Sometimes we whisper it quietly and other times we shout it out loud in front of a mirror. I hate how I look. I hate how my face looks my body looks I am too fat or too skinny or too tall or too wide or my legs are too stupid and my face is too smiley or my teeth are dumb and my nose is serious and my stomach is being so lame. Then we think, “I am so ungrateful. I have arms and legs and I can walk and I have strong nail beds and I am alive and I am so selfish and I have to read Man’s Search for Meaning again and call my parents and volunteer more and reduce my carbon footprint and why am I such a self-obsessed ugly asshole no wonder I hate how I look! I hate how I am!” 

On your career:

"Treat your career like a bad boyfriend.

Here’s the thing. Your career won’t take care of you. It won’t call you back or introduce you to its parents. Your career will openly flirt with other people while you are around. It will forget your birthday and wreck your car. Your career will blow you off if you call it too much. It’s never going to leave its wife. Your career is f**king other people and everyone knows but you.

Your career will never marry you.

Career is something that fools you into thinking you are in control and then takes pleasure in reminding you that you aren’t. Career is the thing that will not fill you up and never make you truly whole. Depending on your career is like eating cake for breakfast and wondering why you start crying an hour later.

...ambivalence is a key to success. I will say it again. Ambivalence is key. You have to care about your work but not the result. You have to care about how good you and how good you feel, but now about how good people think you are or how good people think you look I realize this is extremely difficult. I am not saying I am particularly good at it. I'm like you. Or maybe you'er better at this and I am. You will never climb Career Mountain and get to the top and shout, 'I made it!' You will rarely feel done or complete or even successful Most people I know struggle with that complicated soup of feeling slighted on one hand and like a total fraud on the other. Our ego is a monster that loves to sit at the head of the table, and I have learned that my ego is just as rude and loud and hungry as everyone else's. It doesn't matter how much you get; you are left wanting more. Success is filled with MSG.” 

On life and time:

"The only thing we can depend on in life is that everything changes. The seasons, our partners, what we want and need. We hold hands with our high school friends and swear to never lose touch, and then we do. We scrape ice off our cars and feel like winter will never end, and it does. We stand in the bathroom and look at our face and say, “Stop getting old, face. I command you!” and it doesn’t listen. Change is the only constant. Your ability to navigate and tolerate change and its painful uncomfortableness directly correlates to your happiness and general well-being. See what I just did there? I saved you thousands of dollars on self-help books. If you can surf your life rather than plant your feet, you will be happier. 

So change happens and time passes. If you hate your stupid boring town and can’t wait to get outta there and show everybody what a kick-ass break-dancer you are, then this is good news. If you get really good at break dancing and then realize nobody gives a shit about break dancing anymore, this news is bad. Time moves too slow or too fast. But I know a secret. You can control time. You can stop it or stretch it or loop it around. You can travel back and forth by living in the moment and paying attention. Time can be your bitch if you just let go of the “next” and the “before.”"

On patience:

"In the shop, I found an old-timey bathing suit. I brought the bathing suit home and looked at it. I thought about who might have owned it before. The bathing suit didn’t fit into my life at that moment. I was too busy to go swimming. I felt disconnected from my body after having kids. And I was sad. I sat in the moment, looking at that bathing suit. I thought about how long my winter had felt. My brain fooled me into thinking the winter would never end. I closed my eyes and thought of what my life would look like when it did finally end—what six months from now might feel like. I put this bathing suit in a drawer and it waited for me to take it traveling. And then six months later I went to Palm Springs with a bunch of wonderful women. They were my beautiful friends who had helped me through a difficult year. We were going swimming and I reached into my bag to find a bathing suit. I had put this old-timey bathing suit in with the rest. I tried it on again and I felt beautiful. I thanked the bathing suit for waiting for me. I thanked the women for holding me up when I couldn’t hold myself. I thought about the woman who had worn that bathing suit before and realized she was another woman who had helped me. I thanked her too. I realized I had traveled again, this time into a happier future. I stood in the sun. I thanked the sun.

The more I time-travel the more I learn I am always just where I need to be."

On living:

“I cannot stress enough that the answer to life's questions is often in people's faces. Try putting your iPhones down once in a while, and look in people's faces. People's faces will tell you amazing things. Like if they are angry, or nauseous or asleep.

The only way we will survive is by being kind. The only way we can get by in this world is through the help we receive from others. No one can do it alone, no matter how great the machines are."

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