Favorite Quotes from Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Big Magic”

Hello dear reader friend!

Here are all my favorite quotes from “Big Magic”. I loved Elizabeth Gilbert’s wisdom and ability to cut right to the heart of the matter. If you’re interested in the full review, you can find my book review video here. All the quotes are by Elizabeth Gilbert unless otherwise credited.

You are not required to save the world with your creativity

Merely by pursuing what you love, you may inadvertently end up helping us plenty.

There is no love which does not become help. -Paul Tillich

Create whatever causes a revolution in your heart. The rest will take care of itself.

Never delude yourself into believing that you require someone else’s blessing (or even their comprehension) in order to make your own creative work. And always remember that people’s judgements about you are none of your business.

It ain’t what they call you; it’s what you answer to. – W. C. Fields

I can only be in charge of producing the work itself.

Frustration is not an interruption of your process; frustration is the process.

I held on to those other sources of income for so long because I never wanted to burden my writing with the responsibility of paying for my life.

There is no dishonor in having a job. What is dishonorable is scaring away your creativity by demanding that it pay for your entire existence.

We must understand that the drive for perfectionism is a corrosive waste of time, because nothing is ever beyond criticism.

I’m talking about living a life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than by fear

Your fear will always be triggered by your creativity, because creativity asks you to enter into the realms of uncertain outcome, and fear hates uncertain outcome.

I made a decision a long time ago that if I want creativity in my life–and I do–then I will have to make space for fear too.

I’ve noticed that when people try to kill off their fear, they often end up inadvertently murdering their creativity in the process.

The less I fight my fear, the less it fights back.

If you can’t learn to travel comfortably alongside your fear, then you’ll never be able to go anywhere interesting or do anything interesting.

We simply do not have time anymore to think so small.

“A wretched allegiance to the notion of scarcity”

In the end, creativity is a fit to the creator, not just a gift to the audience.

All I know for certain is that this is how I want to spend my life-collaborating to the best of my ability with forces of inspiration that I can neither see, nor prove, nor command, nor understand.

He didn’t quite his day job to follow his dream; he just folded his dream into his everyday life

“Quietly impudent self-assertion”

People don’t do this kind of thing because they have all kinds of extra time and energy for it; they do this kind of thing because their creativity matters to them enough that they are willing to make all kinds of extra sacrifices for it.

If greatness should ever accidentally stumble upon you, let it catch you hard at work.

Create whatever you want to create–and let it be stupendously imperfect, because it is exceedingly likely that nobody will ever notice.

A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week. – General George Patton

Do whatever you love to do, and do it with both seriousness and lightness.

Heaven forbid anyone should enjoy their chosen vocation.

Curiosity only ever asks one simple question: “Is there anything you’re interested in?”

Sometimes I think that the difference between a tormented creative life and a tranquil creative life is nothing more than the difference between the word awful and the word interesting.

Whatever you do, try not to dwell too long on your failures.

Only when we are at our most playful can divinity finally get serious with us.

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