Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Gail Sheehy

American Writer, Journalist, Lecturer and Author

"If every day is an awakening, you will never grow old. You will just keep growing."

"Leaders are people we as followers want to regard with awe as the fullest flowering of our own possibilities."

"Temperence in all things, including our hopes as well as our fears, is a worthy goal, but it is hardly human to be always temperate. It is far wiser to know how to balance a great sorrow with a great happiness, or a recurrence of dread with a renewal of faith."

"Creativity can be described as letting go of certainties."

"If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we aren't really living."

"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter into another! "

"The delights of self-discovery are always available. "

"Growth demands a temporary surrender of security. "

"To be tested is good. The challenged life may be the best therapist. "

"Because men have to, and women can chose to. Women remind men and guilt them into it."

"Changes are not only possible and predictable, but to deny them is to be an accomplice to one's own unnecessary vegetation."

"Ah, mastery... what a profoundly satisfying feeling when one finally gets on top of a new set of skills... and then sees the light under the new door those skills can open, even as another door is closing."

"Going to Hollywood to talk about menopause was a little like going to Las Vegas to sell savings accounts."

"Every day is an awakening, you will never grow old. You will just keep growing."

"It is a paradox that as we reach our prime, we also see there is a place where it finishes."

"He was right. In those first days after the President's admission to the nation, even his staunchest supporters had been scarcely able to contain their rage. I wish ... I had the guts to tell him what I really think."

"It is a silly question to ask a prostitute why she does it. These are the highest-paid "professional" women in America."

"No sooner do we think we have assembled a comfortable life than we find a piece of ourselves that has no place to fit in."

"Sex and older women used to be considered an oxymoron, rarely mentioned in the same breath."

"Over the next few years the boardrooms of America are going to light up with hot flashes."

"Growth demands a temporary surrender of security. It may mean a giving up of familiar but limiting patterns, safe but unrewarding work, values no longer believed in, relationships that have lost their meaning. As Dostoevsky put it, Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most. The real fear should be of the opposite course."

"Phases of the creative process: Preparation - gathering impressions. Incubation - letting go of certainties. Immersion/Illumination - creative intervention/risk. Revision - conscious structuring and editing of creative material."

"If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we are not really living. Growth demands a temporary surrender of security. If we don't change, we don't grow. If we don't grow, we are not really living. Growth demands a temporary surrender of security."

"The Internet has been a boon to this age group."

"The secret of a leader lies in the tests he has faced over the whole course of his life and the habit of action he develops in meeting those tests."

"The source of continuing aliveness was to find your passion and pursue it, with whole heart and single mind."

"The perceptions of middle age have their own luminosity."

"We are not unlike a particularly hardy crustacean. . . With each passage from one stage of human growth to the next we, too, must shed a protective structure. We are left exposed and vulnerable -- but also yeasty and embryonic again, capable of stretching in ways we hadn't known before. These sheddings may take several years or more. Coming out of each passage, though, we enter a longer and more stable period in which we can expect relative tranquility and a sense of equilibrium regained."

"Transformation also means looking for ways to stop pushing yourself so hard professionally or inviting so much stress."

"There certainly are middle-aged children who have an oh-my-God, Mom's-gone-wild reaction if Mom starts to date. But what they should recognize is that if Mom has a boyfriend, she won't be nagging them about how they have to come to her for Christmas."

"To hear how special and wonderful we are is endlessly enthralling."

"We hear the haunting presentiment of a dutiful middle age in the current reluctance of young people to select any option except the one they feel will impinge upon them the least."

"When men reach their sixties and retire, they go to pieces. Women go right on cooking."

"There is nothing in the world as great as finding your sexual excitement in your fifties."

"There is no more defiant denial of one man's ability to possess one woman exclusively than the prostitute who refuses to be redeemed."

"With each passage of human growth we must shed a protective structure (like a hardy crustacean). We are left exposed and vulnerable - but also yeasty and embryonic again, capable of stretching in ways we hadn't known before."

"With the only certainty in our daily existence being change, and a rate of change growing always faster in a kind of technological leapfrog game, speed helps people think they are catching up."

"Would that there were an award for people who come to understand the concept of enough. Good enough. Successful enough. Thin enough. Rich enough. Socially responsible enough. When you have self-respect you have enough."