25 Fun and Helpful Quotations About the Human Mind
These short quotes about the mind may inspire you to change yours.
I came across many thought-provoking quotations about the mind as I was writing my last blog, 8 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Mind. Those below are especially meaningful to me, because they jibe with my personal experience as well as with modern neuroscience. It’s amazing how many pre-modern thinkers came up with perceptive quotes about the mind just by…well… thinking. No fancy MRI scans needed.
Here are my current favorite quotes about the mind, loosely organized into categories.
The Wildness of the Mind
The mind of man is capable of anything.
The mind has a mind of its own.
The mind is its own place and in itself, can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven.
(Sometimes) you will come face to face with the sudden and shocking realization that you are completely crazy. Your mind is a shrieking, gibbering madhouse on wheels barreling pell-mell down the hill, utterly out of control and hopeless. No problem. You are not crazier than you were yesterday. It has always been this way and you never noticed.
Calming the Wild Mind
Don't believe everything you think. Thoughts are just that—thoughts.
The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.
You have power over your mind—not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.
Change Your Mindset, Change Your Life
We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.
Man can alter his life by altering his thinking.
Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.
The advice to change your mindset can easily be dismissed, as in the comment, But you don’t know what I have to deal with! Yet Viktor Frankl, a psychiatrist, was able to say yes to life despite enduring the brutality of the Nazi concentration camps. He survived and founded a school of existential therapy.
The Mind and Happiness
Human happiness is a disposition of mind and not a condition of circumstance.
The mind is the source of all suffering, and it is also the source of all happiness.
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.
Peace of Mind
You find that you have peace of mind and can enjoy yourself, get more sleep, and rest when you know that it was a one hundred percent effort that you gave—win or lose.
Peace of mind for five minutes, that's what I crave.
At the age of 18, I made up my mind to never have another bad day in my life. I dove into an endless sea of gratitude from which I've never emerged.
Changing Your Mind
It's perfectly okay to make a decision and then change your mind. Being able to change your mind is the best way to find out you still have one.
You must weed your mind as you would weed your garden.
‘If you can change your mind, you can change your life.
A wise man changes his mind, a fool never.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.
The Thoreau quote is one of my all-time favorites. Changing a mental habit requires a deliberate choice and takes dedication, time, and practice. Thanks for the reminder, Thoreau!
From Thinking to Action
We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.
The mind has exactly the same power as the hands; not merely to grasp the world, but to change it.
Be careful of your thoughts, they may become words at any moment.