The Outward Bound Readings Book is a collection of hundreds of our Instructors’ favorite quotes used at the right moments on a course to inspire students, make them laugh and to spark moments of reflection. These quotes are an integral part of Outward Bound and stick with the students long after their course is over. An excerpt from the Readings Book elaborates, “How lucky we are to travel centuries and continents with the people who’ve contributed to this book, how fortunate to find that we share our frustrations and joys with accomplished sailors, poets, mountaineers, philosophers, naturalists, and fellow Outward Bound students.”
Here are 20 of our favorite quotes from the Readings Book that will motivate, inspire and remind you why the challenge is always worth it.
Now I know the secret of making the best persons; It is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.
If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.
-Henry David Thoreau
There is more to be learned on one day of discomfort, poverty and anxiety than in a lifetime of apparent happiness, security, riches and power.
When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.-Harriet Beecher Stowe
Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.
Man who say it cannot be done should not interrupt man doing it.
-Old Chinese Proverb
The trick is what one emphasizes. We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same ….
A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.
I regard it as the foremost task of education to ensure survival of these qualities: an enterprising curiosity; an undefeatable spirit, tenacity in pursuit, readiness for sensible self-denial and above all, compassion.
Do you know a cure for me?Why yes, he said, I know a cure for everything. Salt water.Salt water? I asked him. Yes, he said, In one form or another; sweat, tears or the salt sea.
‘I think’, said Christopher Robin, ‘that we ought to eat all our provisions now, so we won’t have so much to carry.’
-A. A. Milne
There are three ways of trying to win the young. There is persuasion, there is compulsion and there is attraction. You can preach at them, that is a hook without a worm; you can say ‘you must volunteer,’ and that is of the devil; and you can tell them, ‘you are needed,’ that appeal hardly ever fails.
There is more in us than we know. If we can be made to see it, perhaps for the rest of our lives we will be unwilling to settle for less.
Life is complex. Each one of us must make his own path. The right road for one is the wrong road for another… it is not paved in blacktop; it is not brightly lit, and it has no road signs. It is a rocky path through the wilderness.
-M. Scott Peck
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