clouds in blue sky above green ground, spell the word change and an arrow

Personal change, social change, change in our environment — change, as the quote goes, is the only constant in life. Yet managing change, choosing change, sticking with positive change — that can be difficult.

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Life-transforming ideas have always come to me through books.

— bell hooks

Hope is essential to any political struggle for radical change when the overall social climate promotes disillusionment and despair.

— bell hooks

Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man.

— Benjamin Franklin

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

— Bert Lance

Storytelling can be the most potent way to celebrate progress, inspire change, and bring about a more diverse world. If stories shape our perceptions, then perhaps the stories we never hear shape our biases through the lack of awareness they enable.

— Beyond Diversity, Rohit Bhargava

The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.

— Bill Clinton

I don’t think the human mind can comprehend the past and the future. They are both just illusions that can manipulate you into thinking there’s some kind of change.

— Bob Dylan

He who is not busy being born is busy dying.

— Bob Dylan

You better start swimming or you’ll sink like a stone, ’cause the times they are a-changing.

— Bob Dylan

We must throw out the old, fear-based thought-forms and evolve, and begin to live as higher beings of compassion.

— Bryant McGill

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.

— Buckminster Fuller

Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.

— Carl Bard

The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.

— Carl Rogers

If you are only skeptical, then no new ideas make it through to you. You become a crotchety old person convinced that nonsense is ruling the world. (There is, of course, much data to support you.) But every now and then, a new idea turns out to be on the mark, valid and wonderful. If you are too much in the habit of being skeptical about everything, you are going to miss or resent it, and either way you will be standing in the way of understanding and progress.

— Carl Sagan

Beliefs and values that have held sway for thousands of years will be questioned as never before.

— Carol P. Christ

Thinking about profound social change, conservatives always expect disaster, while revolutionaries confidentially expect utopia. Both are wrong.

— Carolyn Heilbrun

I felt like power meant that you had to be engaged in a certain kind of struggle by force of movement and battle – and that’s very exhausting. Now, power is more about certainty and stillness and realizing that the infrastructures that we gather around and worship are the least powerful things.

— Carrie Brownstein

The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people.

— Cesar Chavez

The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.

— Charles Du Bos, (sometimes attributed to Charles Dickens, Charles DuBois, W.E.B. du Bois)

If you have always done it that way, it is probably wrong.

— Charles Kettering

The fastest way to change society is to mobilize the women of the world.

— Charles Malik

… while we flatter ourselves that things remain the same, they are changing under our very eyes from year to year, from day to day.

— Charlotte Perkins Gilman

We are all revolutionaries now, addicts of change.

— Christopher Lasch

There is no squabbling so violent as that between people who accepted an idea yesterday and those who will accept the same idea tomorrow.

— Christopher Morley

I have learned that sometimes ‘sorry’ is not enough. Sometimes you actually have to change.

— Claire London

Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely. It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom, will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good. What is needed for dramatic change is an accumulation of acts, adding, adding to, adding more, continuing. We know that it does not take everyone on Earth to bring justice and peace, but only a small, determined group who will not give up during the first, second, or hundredth gale.

— Clarissa Pinkola Estes

It doesn’t matter how strong your opinions are. If you don’t use your power for positive change, you are, indeed, part of the problem.

— Coretta Scott King

There is a spirit and a need and a man at the beginning of every great human advance. Every one of these must be right for that particular moment of history, or nothing happens.

— Coretta Scott King

There comes a time when time itself is ready for a change.

— Coretta Scott King

I can’t help but believe that at some time in the not-too-distant future, there is going to be another movement to change these systemic conditions of poverty, injustice, and violence in people’s lives. That is where we’ve got to go, and it is going to be a struggle.

— Coretta Scott King

Love is such a powerful force. It’s there for everyone to embrace — that kind of unconditional love for all of humankind. That is the kind of love that impels people to go into the community and try to change conditions for others, to take risks for what they believe in.

— Coretta Scott King

Nonviolence is a method that transforms, first of all, the individual once you understand it and embrace it. It begins with you and, if you can, about transforming individuals so that they love unconditionally.

— Coretta Scott King

The woman power of this nation can be the power which makes us whole and heals the rotten community, now so shattered by war and poverty and racism. I have great faith in the power of women who will dedicate themselves whole-heartedly to the task of remaking our society.

— Coretta Scott King

For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.

— Cynthia Occelli

The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.

— Dan Millman

Integrity is keeping a commitment even after circumstances have changed.

— David Jeremiah

Every moment is an organizing opportunity, every person a potential activist, every minute a chance to change the world.

— Dolores Huerta

Shake my future push me past my complacency
my taken-for-granted my comfort zone
shake my future let me source the unimagined
be released from the sentence of the inevitable
take control, empower myself
past the dour predictions of the present
and change myself …

— Dorothea Smartt, 2012

I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.

— E. B. White

If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.

— E.B. White

The colossal misunderstanding of our time is the assumption that insight will work with people who are unmotivated to change. Communication does not depend on syntax, or eloquence, or rhetoric, or articulation but on the emotional context in which the message is being heard. People can only hear you when they are moving toward you, and they are not likely to when your words are pursuing them. Even the choices words lose their power when they are used to overpower. Attitudes are the real figures of speech.

— Edwin H. Friedman

One can no longer lay down rules as to what individuals will do in any area of their lives in a world that is changing as fast as ours is changing today.

— Eleanor Roosevelt, May 20, 1954, “My Day.”

All change is not growth; as all movement is not forward.

— Ellen Glasgow

All but Death, can be Adjusted—
Dynasties repaired—
Systems—settled in their Sockets—
Citadels—dissolved— Wastes of Lives—resown with Colors
By Succeeding Springs—
Death—unto itself—Exception—
Is exempt from Change—

— Emily Dickinson

In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.

— Eric Hoffer

Actually, the world and America is upset and the only way to bring about a change is to upset it more.

— Fannie Lou Hamer

An optimist is a person who sees only the lights in the picture, whereas a pessimist sees only the shadows. An idealist, however, is one who sees the light and the shadows, but in addition sees something else: the possibility of changing the picture, of making the lights prevail over the shadows.

— Felix Adler

We cannot adopt the way of living that was satisfactory a hundred years ago. The world in which we live has changed, and we must change with it.

— Felix Adler

We call him a hero who maintains himself, single-handed, against superior numbers. We call him a master-horseman who sits a fiery and vicious steed, guiding him at will. And in like manner, we call him a moral hero who conquers the enemies within his own breast — and we admire and revere the soul which can ride its own passions and force them into obedience to the dictates of reason.

— Felix Adler

Some people say each person has a soul. I would say each person comes into the world with the possibility of a soul. The aim of life is to change our potential soul into an actuality. The whole purpose of life is to become an individual; to become a personality; to acquire distinct selfhood.

— Felix Adler
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