How to Kick Ass and Change the World: 15 Inspiring Quotes from Adam Braun's The Promise of a Pencil

How to Kick Ass and Change the World: 15 Inspiring Quotes from Adam Braun's The Promise of a Pencil
Pencils of Promise Guatemala May 2011

The following quotes are from Adam Braun’s absolutely incredible book, The Promise of a Pencil: How an Ordinary Person Can Create Extraordinary Change. Now I think the title of the book is slightly misleading as Adam Braun is far from ordinary. Five years ago, he quit his 6-figure salary job at Bain & Company to devote 100% of his time to the non-profit, for-purpose organization he created just over a year prior – Pencils of Promise (PoP). Family, friends and co-workers told him he was an idiot…

Five years later, PoP and Adam Braun have built 200+ schools for children in developing countries, in dire need of education. Adam’s journey, his life and his story are simply awe-inspiring and this book has truly changed my life. I can’t recommend it enough, especially to my fellow twenty-somethings. This book essentially is a handbook for how to change the freakin’ world. Check out the most inspiring quotes in the book below.

  1. The biggest difference between the person who lives his or her dreams and the person who aspires is the decision to convert that first spark of motivation into immediate action.
  2. Your twenties are the time to both accept and fight your way into the person you’re destined to become.
  3. Purpose can manifest itself from so many different places, but it most often appears through the smalls things that enable us to feel connected to a broader whole.
  4. Asking for permission opens the door for denial, and in this instance I would not be denied.
  5. People think big ideas suddenly appear on their own, but they’re actually products of many small, intersecting moments and realizations that move us toward a breakthrough.
  6. Take advantage of the freedom that comes with your youth. Inhale life, exhale fire, and embrace the late, sleepless nights, because that’s when the magic happens – when everyone else is asleep and you’re awake thinking about the world as it is, and the world as it could be.
  7. Live not in dreams, but in contemplation of a reality that is perhaps the future.
  8. Bliss does not come from materials or possessions, it comes from fulfilling one’s purpose in this existence.
  9. The key is to think big and then take small incremental steps forward day by day.
  10. Speak the language of the person you want to become.
  11. If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.
  12. The single most powerful element of youth is that you don’t have the life experiences to know what can’t be done.
  13. Never let anyone tell you that your dream is impossible. No matter how big or small, you can make it real.
  14. You can’t keep saying, “I’ll get started tomorrow.” The world has far too many problems, and you are way too smart and capable to not help tackle them. Your time is now.
  15. Make your life a story worth telling.

Do yourself a favor – buy the book here.