Elizabeth Gilbert quotes

  • Tis' better to live your own life imperfectly than to imitate someone else's perfectly.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Life #Positivity #Live Your Own Life

  • Returning to writing fiction after years away from it. Returning to the rootstock of my whole life as a writer. It's what I had wanted to be for my entire life, since I can remember, since my particular time immemorial. It's how I got my start as a writer.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Writing #Years #Fiction

  • A true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Mirrors #Soul #Attention

  • My work is incredibly important to me personally. It brings me joy and it brings me life and it brings me meaning. It doesn't necessarily have to be important to the people who read it.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #People #Joy #Important

  • I'm choosing happiness over suffering, I know I am. I'm making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Happiness #Space #Suffering

  • Being a woman did not look enviable to me, even when it looked admirable. It looked like nonstop sacrifice and service. Because it was. Being a woman seemed vulnerable and sad. Even the strong women I knew - and they were all strong - had earned their strength through enduring huge disappointments and tremendous struggles.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Strong Women #Disappointment #Struggle

  • Most of us, even if only for two minutes in our lives, have experienced at some time or another an inexplicable and random sense of complete bliss, unrelated to anything that was happening in the outside world.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Two #World #Bliss

  • Nobody's life is interesting enough to warrant a third memoir.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Interesting #Life Is #Enough

  • If you're going to answer the call and you're going to transform and you're going to change, get ready. It is not a day at the beach.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Beach #Answers #Ready

  • If you want to know the world, sometimes you have to get out and roll around.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #World #Want #Sometimes

  • I’m here. I love you. I don’t care if you need to stay up crying all night long, I will stay with you. There’s nothing you can ever do to lose my love. I will protect you until you die, and after your death I will still protect you. I am stronger than Depression and I am braver than Loneliness and nothing will ever exhaust me.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Depression #Death

  • I never wanted to be the person that waited for a stranger to come to town - I wanted to be the stranger!
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Towns #Stranger #Wanted

  • This is a good sign, having a broken heart. It means we have tried for something.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Heartbreak #Stay Strong

  • The world needs women who stop asking for permission from the principal. Permission to live their lives as they deeply know they often should. I think we still look to authority figures for validation, recognition, permission.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Thinking #Validation #Needs

  • Stop wearing your wishbone where your backbone ought to be.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Inspirational #Motivational #Strength

  • If I'm being forgiving of myself, I could say I'm somebody who was really hungry for experiences. The same thing that would make me go try to be a trail cook on a ranch was the same thing that would make me want to have sex with a couple cowboys while I was there.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Sex #Couple #Cowboy

  • There is so much about my fate that I cannot control, but other things do fall under the jurisdiction. I can decide how I spend my time, whom I interact with, whom I share my body and life and money and energy with. I can select what I can read and eat and study. I can choose how I'm going to regard unfortunate circumstances in my life-whether I will see them as curses or opportunities. I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all, I can choose my thoughts.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Life #Attitude #Fall

  • There's a lot of disorder that comes along with wanting to know everything and wanting to try everything and wanting to experience everything, but there's a lot of knowledge that comes out of it too.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Trying #Disorder

  • There is hardly a more gracious gift that we can offer somebody than to accept them fully, to love them almost despite themselves.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Accepting #Gracious #Offers

  • They say that there are three kinds of people in the world. There are people who never learn one way or another anything; there are people who learn from their own mistakes, eventually and with great pain; and then there are the really wise people who learn from other people's mistakes and spare themselves the suffering.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Wise #Pain #Mistake

  • You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day. This is a power you can cultivate. If you want to control things in your life so bad, work on the mind. That's the only thing you should be trying to control.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Change #Happiness #Clothes

  • I have a lot of trouble forgiving myself for being so dumb... But yes, of course, the big generous compassionate view that you should take of yourself and of all events is: what a glorious circus train this has been, and what a wonderful messy parade, and all of those steps took me here, where I precisely need to be now, so God bless it.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Views #Dumb #Forgiving

  • Now, if you are like me - if you are like practically anybody in America - then you probably hold some negative opinions about the French, based upon movies, rumors, recent headlines, unfortunate run-ins with Parisian waiters, or... you know... all that unpleasantness surrounding the Vichy regime.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Running #America #Rumor

  • When I lost my friends, it was because I had used the power of giving on them recklessly. I swept into their lives with my big fat checkbook, and I erased years of obstacles for them overnight - but sometimes, in the process, I also accidentally erased years of dignity.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Years #Giving #Dignity

  • So now I have started living my own life. Imperfect and clumsy as it may look, it is resembling me now, thoroughly.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Looks #May #Imperfect

  • I would like to spend the rest of my days in a place so silent–and working at a pace so slow–that I would be able to hear myself living.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Would Be #Pace #Able

  • For most of Western civilization there was no real division between the realms of science, divinity, and artistic endeavor - they were just three strands of the same braid, all of them pulling toward the same beautiful desire: to try to understand the workings of this curious and beautiful world. There were many people who would have called themselves all three things at once: men of god, men of science, men of the arts.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Beautiful #Art #Real

  • Your emotions are the slaves to your thoughts, and you are the slave to your emotions.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Inspirational #Life #Emotion

  • Marriage is - among other things - a study in contradiction and disappointment, and inside that reality there is space for us to truly learn how to love.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Disappointment #Reality #Space

  • The inability to open up to hope is what blocks trust, and blocked trust is the reason for blighted dreams.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Trust #Dream #Hope

  • I'm afraid many women do choose the wedding over the marriage. It seems a steep price to pay, but it comes from a place of deep, sad longing to be loved and to have it proven that you are of value.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Pay #Longing #Values

  • Never forget that once upon a time, in an unguarded moment, you recognized yourself as a friend.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Self Worth #Once Upon A Time #Never Forget

  • What I object to is the hyper-fetishized wedding day, the prioritizing of wedding over marriage. I have a real problem with couples spending far more time discussing the seating arrangement or the color of the bridesmaid's gowns than hashing out, for instance, their feelings about how they intend to handle questions of housework, child-rearing, finances and fidelity for the next four or five decades.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Children #Couple #Real

  • That’s the thing about a human life-there’s no control group, no way to ever know how any of us would have turned out if any variables had been changed.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Life Lesson #Groups #Variables

  • Here in America, marriage still has a mystical, intangible power: It is a passport to adulthood and respectability and to a certain extent citizenship. Any relationship less than "married" is considered temporary and not worthy of honor.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #America #Honor #Married

  • To be fully seen by somebody, then, and be loved anyhow - this is a human offering that can border on miraculous.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Marriage #Pregnancy

  • Modern marriage is first and foremost a romantic and private union, but the tax laws and inheritance laws and religious implications that still surround this institution indicate that marriage has evolved without casting away its earlier purposes or assumptions. It's like we just keep building on this thing, piling new advancements on the old model.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Religious #Law #Advancement

  • Your fear is the most boring thing about you.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Overcoming #Overcoming Fear #Boring

  • I think of modern marriage as a car strangely fashioned out of an old abandoned horse carriage, built upon the framework of a mule cart. All the original engineering is still there, underneath it all.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Horse #Thinking #Engineering

  • You might get nothing out of it at all except a beautiful, long life where all you did was follow your gorgeous curiosity. And that should be enough too.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Beautiful #Long #Curiosity

  • The fantasy of the wedding day is that it represents undeniable public and private truth that you have been chosen. For that one day, you are the most valuable creature in the world - a treasure, a princess, a prize.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Princess #One Day #Wedding Day

  • Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it. You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestations of your own blessings. And once you have achieved a state of happiness, you must never become lax about maintaining it. You must make a mighty effort to keep swimming upward into that happiness forever, to stay afloat on top of it.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Inspirational #Motivational #Happiness

  • I consider a good dinner party at our house to be where people drink and eat more than they're meant to.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Party #People #House

  • we must take care of our families wherever we find them.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Family #Home #Care

  • I was a bartender for a long time, so I know how to make drinks, but I'm more likely to offer them than to have them. I think this is one of the reasons why I get to live longer than my great-grandmother did, and why I get to produce more writing than she did, and why my marriage isn't in dire straits.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Writing #Grandmother #Thinking

  • a woman's place is in the kitchen...sitting in a comfortable chair, with her feet up, drinking a glass of wine and watching her husband cook dinner.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Heartbreak #Husband

  • I think that if you can roast a chicken, you can get whatever you want out of a woman.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Thinking #Want #Chickens

  • I've never seen any life transformation that didn't begin with the person in question finally getting tired of their own bullshit.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Tired #Bullshit #Transformation

  • Maybe it's just me but I would suspect that a man trying to impress a woman would be more likely to bring out the steak - "I killed this for you, now I'm grilling it for you."
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Men #Trying #Would Be

  • We all want things to stay the same. Settle for living in misery because we are afraid of change, of things crumbling to ruins. Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Inspirational #Crumbling #Want

  • If you're brave enough to leave behind everything familiar and comforting, which can be anything from your house to bitter, old resentments, and set out on a truth-seeking journey, either externally or internally, and if you are truly willing to regard everything that happens to you on that journey as a clue and if you accept everyone you meet along the way as a teacher and if you are prepared, most of all, to face and forgive some very difficult realities about yourself, then the truth will not be withheld from you.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Teacher #Journey #Reality

  • Maturity brings - among other things - the ability to sustain and survive enormous contradictions and disappointments.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Disappointment #Maturity #Contradiction

  • You can measure the happiness of a marriage by the number of scars that each partner carries on their tongues, earned from years of biting back angry words.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Relationship #Family #Years

  • A man that can cook you a proper meal that is like a weekday meal - which I think cannot be better than in the form of a roast chicken - that's the greatest.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Thinking #Men #Meals

  • At some point, you gotta let go, and sit still, and allow contentment to come to you.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Being Happy #Letting Go #Beautiful Life

  • We alter and customize the thing every century, every generation, every day - both in the courts and in our own homes. And marriage accepts our modifications gracefully. Marriage adapts, evolves and (in a manner that I find miraculous and kind of inspiring) somehow keeps chugging along.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Home #Generations #Kind

  • Take care of the problems now, or else you'll just have to suffer again later when you scew everything up the next time. And that repetition of suffering - that's hell. Moving out of that endless repetition to a new level of understand - there's where you'll find heaven.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Karma #Moving #Heaven

  • People will always want intimacy with one chosen person and you cannot have intimacy without privacy, which is why couples draw circles of privacy around themselves. They demand that family, neighbors and the law respect their union, and that is why we have marriage.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Couple #Law #Circles

  • You were given life; it is your duty (and also your entitlement as a human being) to find something beautiful within life, no matter how slight.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Life #Beauty #Beautiful

  • Marriage is not a game for the young.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Games #Young

  • Real, sane, mature love—the kind that pays the mortgage year after year and picks up the kids after school—is not based on infatuation but on affection and respect.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Heartbreak #Real

  • Marriage is a strange combination of dream and reality, and we spend our lives as couples trying to negotiate that divide.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Dream #Couple #Reality

  • The appreciation of pleasure can be the anchor of humanity.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Appreciation #Anchors #Humanity

  • I think that if you can roast a chicken, you can get whatever you want out of a woman. Maybe it's just me but I would suspect that a man trying to impress a woman would be more likely to bring out the steak - "I killed this for you, now I'm grilling it for you." A man that can cook you a proper meal that is like a weekday meal - which I think cannot be better than in the form of a roast chicken - that's the greatest.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Men #Thinking #Trying

  • A soul mates purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master...
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Life #Romantic

  • What we're all sort of trying to do in our lives is to make the simplest things work out the best.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Work Out #Trying #Life Is

  • Embrace the glorious mess that you are
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Happiness #Powerful #Embrace

  • There's this great kind of spooky dance that happens that I can't access any other way. I think most of us are given kind of one pathway to that dance, and that's why I'm a writer. It's the only way I can get there. I can't do it through art, I can't do it through singing, I can't do it through mothering, I can't do it through invention.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Art #Thinking #Singing

  • Look for God. Look for God like a man with his head on fire looks for water.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Men #Fire

  • I know what it feels like to be bruised; I know what it feels like to carry things around with you that never totally heal. There's closure and then there's stuff that's kind of like, Well, I guess it's going to be in the minivan forever. And you carry it with you and you continue on your journey with your minivan full of stuff, which I think most of us do.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Journey #Thinking #Forever

  • I was the baby of the family, but I was never babied, and that allowed me to take whatever artistic temperament I had and apply learned discipline. I was taught how to work. I think that's everything. Creativity and imagination alone are not going to get you there.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Baby #Creativity #Thinking

  • When you write a novel, there's a level at which you are much more revealing about who you are because you're less self-conscious about how you're presenting yourself. You are accidentally leaving your DNA all over everything in a novel because it's all coming from you.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Writing #Dna #Self

  • There’s a crack (or cracks) in everyone…that’s how the light of God gets in.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love #Light #Good Friday

  • All of women's stories in the 19th century had either one of two endings: you either had the good Jane Austen marriage at the end and you were happy; or you had the terrible Henry James savage downfall because of your own hubris as a woman, or you've made some great error leading you down a path to ruin. One is the story of love that's successful and the other is the story usually of reckless love that goes terribly wrong that destroys the woman.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Successful #Two #Errors

  • Learning how to discipline your speech is a way of preventing your energies from spilling out of you through the rupture of your mouth, exhausting you and filling the world with words, words, words instead of serenity, peace and bliss.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Discipline #Serenity #Energy

  • Being content with what you have already is an art form that leads to a peace that can’t be replaced by anything else.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Art #Form #Replaced

  • We all have love stories that go terribly wrong; we all have horribly broken hearts. And somehow we endure. We're not destroyed by it. We endure and go on to do interesting things and have worthy lives, even though we carry our heartbreaks with us. That's a kind of personal story of mine that I don't think I would tell in memoir but I do think I can tell in fiction.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Heart #Thinking #Broken

  • I have had work or ideas come through me from a source that I honestly cannot identify. What is that thing? And how are we to relate to it in a way that will not make us lose our minds, but, in fact, might actually keep us sane?
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Motivation #Inspiration #Ideas

  • I'm not particularly inventive. If you left me in а room and told me to write a novel, I wouldn't be able to do it. But if you gave me two years in a public library around the corner, I could. It all comes from sort of mixing the true and the invented. I'm not a fabulist. I'm more of a reporter.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Writing #Years #Two

  • The Yogic sages say that all the pain of a human life is caused by words, as is all the joy. We create words to define our experience and those words bring attendant emotions that jerk us around like dogs on a leash. We get seduced by our own mantras (I'm a failure I'm lonely I'm a failure I'm lonely) and we become monuments to them. To stop talking for a while, then, is to attempt to strip away the power of words, to stop choking ourselves with words, to liberate ourselves from our suffocating mantras.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Dog #Lonely #Pain

  • God wants us to be in joy, God wants us to be happy. Because of this extraordinary consciousness and this great ability for wonder and marvel, and without denying any of the terrors and horrors of the world, we also have an obligation toward joy and toward miracle and excitement.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Miracle #Joy #World

  • Balance is not letting anyone love you less than you love yourself.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Love You #Love Yourself #Balance

  • When you want to do something creative and you want to do something new, you have to start with the thing that's making you want to jump up out of bed in the morning.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Morning #Creative #Bed

  • To sit patiently with a yearning that has not yet been fulfilled, and to trust that, that fulfillment will come, is quite possibly one of the most powerful "magic skills" that human beings are capable of. It has been noted by almost every ancient wisdom tradition
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Faith #Powerful #Skills

  • I'm still aspiring to be a better and better person, but I think that disappointments have made me gentler with other people and their disappointments, the stuff that they have to carry around and endure.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Disappointment #Thinking #People

  • I will tell you why we have these extraordinary minds and souls, Miss Whittaker," he continued, as though he had not heard her. "We have them because there is a supreme intelligence in the universe, which wishes for communion with us. This supreme intelligence longs to be known. It calls out to us. It draws us close to its mystery, and grants us these remarkable minds, in order that we try to reach for it. It wants us to find it. It wants union with us, more than anything.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Order #Missing #Soul

  • I have more compassion than if I had led a life where everything worked out exactly as I had planned or if I had never been wounded or if I had never been betrayed or I had never been harmed. I don't think I would be as good a person.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Thinking #Compassion #Would Be

  • I crossed the street to walk in the sunshine.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Sunshine #Walks #Streets

  • All the parts of us that we ever were are always going to be with us. You make space to carry them and you just try not to let them drive. But you can't chuck them out either.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Space #Trying #Chuck

  • I was not rescued by a prince; I was the administrator of my own rescue.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Rescue #Administrators

  • I think the thing that I lost in myself when I stopped writing fiction and the thing that I rediscovered and started mining again is, for lack of a better word, magic. It's the way you can brush up against the inexplicable and the mystical.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Writing #Thinking #Magic

  • Let me ask you something, in all the years that you have undressed in front of a gentleman has he ever asked you to leave? Has he ever walked out and left? No? It’s because he doesn’t care! He’s in a room with a naked girl, he just won the lottery
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Girl #Years #Gentleman

  • For the entire decade of my 30s and the early part of my 40s, I didn't write a word of fiction. I just left behind a dream of my life.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Dream #Writing #Fiction

  • The Bhagavad Gita—that ancient Indian Yogic text—says that it is better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of somebody else’s life with perfection. So now I have started living my own life. Imperfect and clumsy as it may look, it is resembling me now, thoroughly.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Destiny #Perfection #Looks

  • I think my weakness as a writer is a limited imagination, and I think my strength is a talent for reflecting the world, or sort of curating things out of the world and putting them into books.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Book #Thinking #Imagination

  • You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestation of your own blessings.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Blessing #Follow Your Dreams #Manifestation

  • I've always thought of my writing as a spiritual practice. But I think that fiction is the most supernatural kind of writing that you can do because of the ways that the real and the unreal weave together to create something that feels more true than anything.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Spiritual #Real #Writing

  • Man is a demon, man is a god. Both true.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Men #Demon

  • We search for happiness everywhere, but we are like Tolstoy's fabled beggar who spent his life sitting on a pot of gold, under him the whole time. Your treasure--your perfection--is within you already. But to claim it, you must leave the buy commotion of the mind and abandon the desires of the ego and enter into the silence of the heart.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Heart #Perfection #Silence

  • [Saint Anthony] said, in his solitude, he sometimes encountered devils who looked like angels, and other times he found angels who looked like devils. When asked how he could tell the difference, the saint said that you can only tell which is which by the way you feel after the creature has left your company.
    -- Elizabeth Gilbert

    #Angel #Differences #Solitude