Words to live by

Over the years, as I’ve progressed and matured in the practice of architecture, I’ve come across quotations from a variety of sources that have become my moral compass. I thought I’d share these. Maybe they’ll inspire you, guide you, or reaffirm your values. Enjoy:


Maintaining strong values is the key to success in any field, chief among them is a solid work ethic.” – Cal Ripken Jr.
“Self-Discipline – Having purity of thought, being true to your values” – Source unknown
Doing the right thing pays off.” – Source unknown
The success of an organization is best measured by the quality of the people and organizations which it serves.” – Source Unknown


In a game, nothing should be given away. The winner must be better and stronger and smarter. But most of all, he must be passionate. He must bleed love and spit fire.” – Warren Sapp, Tampa Bay Bucs
Only you have the power within you – Just believe in yourself and the sea will part before you…” – Starlight Express (the musical)
If only you use the power within you, needn’t beg the world to turn around and help you. If you draw on what you have within you, somewhere deep inside…” – Starlight Express (the musical)
I am the Starlight. I can achieve – anything!” – Starlight Express (the musical)
To be a winner, all you have to give is all that you have!” – Successories
It’s my job, to be better than the best and that makes the day for me. Without it, I would be less – than what I expect of me.” – Mac McAnally, Jimmy Buffett

Dedication and Focus

You miss 100% of the shots that you don’t take.” – Successories
Regrets are a waste of time. They are the past crippling you in the present.” – Under the Tuscan Sun (the movie)
This is a dream world, a dream life. But it only happens if you have the backbone and strength to do it.” – Andre Agassi
Why have a vision?
Vision without action is merely a dream.
Action without vision just passes time.
Vision with action can change the world.” – Joel Barker
Preparation makes you consistent. Consistency increases your value and makes you irreplaceable.” – Cal Ripkin Jr.
Plan to fail, if you fail to plan.” – Mike Ditka
Don’t just do what you have to – Do more than you need to.” – Source Unknown
People can be divided into 3 groups:
Those who make things happen.
Those who watch things happen.
Those who wonder what happened.
Congratulations on being the captain of the first group!” – Source Unknown
Climb above the noise and chaos to do the work that really matters.” – Source Unknown
Obstacles are what you see when you take your eyes off the goal.” – Source Unknown


You always want to end on a high note, but I want to end knowing that I gave everything I had, and hopefully that the game was better because I was a part of it!” – Mia Hamm

(This is phrase that I use as my moral compass)

When I lecture on architectural theory, I often use the following quotes. It’s amazing the answers that I get when I ask who gave the quote. Generally, the most common answer is Frank Lloyd Wright. Who do you think said these quotes?

Be still…My mind is a raging torrent, flooded with rivulets of thought, cascading into a world of creative alternatives.”
Be still…My mind is aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.”

Give up? How about Hedley Lamarr, played by Harvey Korman, in the movie Blazing Saddles? I never thought of Harvey Korman as an architectural theorist!

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