Nathaniel Branden Quotes

Nathaniel Branden Quotes

All positive interactions with other human beings involve, to some degree, the experience of visibility- that is, the experience of being seen and understood.

We are parts of one universe, true enough. We stand within an almost infinite network of relationships. Yet each of us is a single point of consciousness, a unique event, a private, unrepeatable world. This is the essence of our aloneness.

Suffering is just about the easiest of all human activities; being happy is just about the hardest. And happiness requires, not surrender to guilt, but emancipation from guilt.

The challenge for people today-and it is not and easy one-is to maintain high personal standards even while feeling that one is living in a moral sewer.

It is naive to think that self-assertiveness is easy. To live self-assertively-which means to live authentically-is an act of high courage. That is why so many people spend the better part of their lives in hiding-from others and also from themselves.

Self-esteem is not a luxury; it is a profound spiritual need.

The idea of original sin-of guilt with no possibility of innocence, no freedom of choice, no alternatives-inherently militates against self-esteem. The very notion of guilt without volition or responsibility is an assault on reason as well as on morality. Sin is not original, it is originated-like virtue.

The greater a child’s terror, and the earlier it is experienced, the harder it becomes to develop a strong and healthy sense of self.

Integrity is congruence between what you know, what you profess, and what you do.

Anyone who engages in the practice of psychotherapy confronts every day the devastation wrought by the teachings of religion.

In any culture, subculture, or family in which belief is valued above thought, and self-surrender is valued above self-expression, and conformity is valued above integrity, those who preserve their self-esteem are likely to be heroic exceptions.

Self-discipline is the ability to organize your behavior over time in the service of specific goals.

Some people stand and move as if they have no right to the space they occupy. They wonder why others often fail to treat them with respect-not realizing that they have signalled others that it is not necessary to treat them with respect.

It is a mistake to look at someone who is self assertive and say, "It's easy for her, she has good self-esteem." One of the ways you build self-esteem is by being self-assertive when it is not easy to do so. There are always times when self-assertiveness requires courage, no matter how high your self-esteem.

A bully hides his fears with fake bravado. That is the opposite of self-assertiveness.

It is humiliating to realize that when you drive yourself underground, when you fake who you are, often you do so for people you do not even like or respect.

It is painful to face the self we know we have never had the integrity to honor and assert.

One of the hardest expressions of self-assertiveness is challenging your limiting beliefs.

Out of fear, out of the desire for approval, out of misguided notions of duty, people surrender themselves-their convictions and their aspirations-every day. There is nothing noble about it. It takes far more courage to fight for your values than to relinquish them.

The opposite of self-assertiveness is self-abnegation-abandoning or submerging your personal values, judgment, and interests. Some people tell themselves this is a virtue. It is a "virtue" that corrodes self-esteem.

If you choose not to live self-responsibly, you count on others to make up your default. No one abjures self-responsibility on a desert island.

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