7 Inspirational Quotes that No Longer Apply

It’s time to update our desk calendars


Who doesn’t love a good inspirational quote every now and then? We all do. Especially on MotivationMondays.

But with the passing of time, we can now look back at some inspirational quotes popularized by decades of desk calendars, speeches, and PowerPoint presentations, to see them for what they are: Outdated.

Here are 7 Inspirational Quotes that no longer apply:

“Courage is grace under pressure.” — Ernest Hemingway

Perhaps it used to be, but Apple redefined ‘courage’ when they removed cords from their earbuds. If Hemingway were alive today I suspect he would issue a revision: “Courage is annoying your stockholders. #BringBackTheJack #CaseoftheMondays. #grumblegrumble”

Ernest Hemingway, prior to 2016, presumably writing these very words.

“It does not matter how slowly you go, so long as you don’t stop.” — Confucius

Maybe in 600 B.C. shuffling about was socially acceptable. But in the 21st century, we have engineered a world that is built for speed: Microwaves. Fiber-optic cables. Lunchables. Waze. Fro-Yo. Whatever this is. Wormholes. The starship Enterprise. Mazdas. Etc. etc.

Confucius — Self portrait (No way he read all those books)

“May you live every day of your life.” — Jonathan Swift

Swift may have been on to something back in the 1700’s, but in today’s modern society, to live ‘your life’ is too narrow. We should escape the mundanity of our lives and live vicariously through the celebrities, entrepreneurs, reality-TV stars, and sports heroes of today’s modern age.

They have all found true happiness.

Jonathan Swift playing with his doll house.

“I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.” — Thomas Jefferson

The only people this still applies to are the factory workers at General Mills. Thomas Jefferson may have written the Magna Carta, but clearly his knowledge had its limits. Luck, as Jefferson knew it, vanished from the earth when dragons went extinct in 1804.

Thomas Jefferson’s inauguration, March 4, 1801

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” — Henry David Thoreau

Oh, Henry. If only this were still possible. It was possible before Christopher Nolan blew our collective mind with Inception. But how can one follow one’s dream if one can’t be certain it is in fact one’s dream?

Last known photograph of Henry David Thoreau’s beard

“Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt. Pfft. What did she know?

Eleanor Roosevelt starring in ‘First Lady and the Tramp.’

And finally…

“Do, or do not. There is no try.” — Yoda

The first ‘participation award’ was handed out in 1997 at a Little League game between the Everton Beansprouts and the Johnsonville Brat-wursts. From that day forward, this quote no longer applies.

Close enough.

Thanks for reading!

Join me next time when I reveal my Top 12 Things Every Manager Should Do Before Getting Out of Bed.