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Quotes and What they Mean to Me by Naomi Sedwick

Naomi Sedwick '26, Sidwell Friends

I am easily influenced and inspired, so many inspirational quotes I find on the internet stand out to me and resonate with me. I follow an account called WeTheUrban on Instagram, and they post frequent inspirational quotes targeted towards benefiting mental health and uplifting all ages, most specifically teens. Their posts offer introspection and motivation for growth and self-development, which I feel is so important because it is incredibly difficult to stay grounded as a stressed teen in high school. These quotes help me stay centered and supply me with a more realistic perspective on life’s ups and downs.

The first quotation is about the unpredictability and constant change that occurs in life: “Healing comes in waves. Progress comes in waves. Grief comes in waves. Happiness comes in waves. Creativity comes in waves. Growth comes in waves. Be patient with yourself.” This quotation particularly speaks to me because I feel the waves of life fittingly represent how things come and go, and are never constant. This is comforting because I feel as though changes in our lives are in sync with an important aspect in nature: waves moving back and forth in the ocean. It's so easy to compare yourself to others around you and feel like you are behind everyone else, but the idea of processing emotions and experiences as waves that pass in the ocean is a beautiful way to illustrate this fluctuation. Progress is never linear and you should never feel guilty for not healing in a straight line. My experience in a rigorous math class this year exemplifies the lesson this quotation teaches, since I often felt behind others in class no matter how hard I worked. I worked extremely hard and would sometimes do well and sometimes not in the class, however, I put forth my best effort because I knew progress wouldn't come immediately in such a difficult class.

The next quotation is: “Nurture your passions, not just your obligations.” This quote is meaningful to me because I think it is so easy to get caught up in the worries of tomorrow and only worry about upcoming school assignments or tests. As busy as life gets, I feel it is so important to foster and further cultivate your passions and the things that make you happy, because things you are excited about can combat the ongoing stress and chaos in your life. I have experienced this first hand through my passion for music and singing, which brings a sense of bliss and peacefulness to me, and forces me to be in the moment and away from the pressure and distress that is carried with my burdens and tasks. Lastly, passions provide a sense of purpose and meaning to our lives, and I think we as humans would be lost and unhappy if we dedicated all of our time solely to our obligations. 

The last quotation is: “Just because someone carries it well, doesn’t mean it isn't heavy.” I love this quote because you never know what someone else is going through and it reinforces that you should always be kind to everyone. In such a judgmental and stressful society, it is crucial to convey compassion for each other, because it is all of our first times living too. We should attempt to approach everyone with gentleness and empathy in order to improve and better the world around us. 

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