Article image

12 Quotes on Staying Flexible and Open-Minded

There are two ways to react when life throws unexpected challenges our way: We can always dig in our heels and refuse to budge, but remaining close-minded and stubborn rarely helps anyone develop into a better version of themselves. On the other hand, striving to stay flexible and open-minded is one of the most appealing qualities a person can have, and a willingness to adapt on the fly will almost certainly help lead us down better and brighter paths.

This doesn’t necessarily mean we should immediately accept all the new ideas presented to us, as it’s good to be discerning and there will still be times when it’s best to stick to our initial plans. But we should always be open to hearing people out and changing our minds if it seems wisest to do so.

This allows us all to see from new perspectives and make informed decisions about the best ways to proceed. If we keep our minds tightly shut to other voices besides our own, ignorance may win out and ultimately hold us back from realizing our full potential.

May these 12 insightful quotes encourage you to remain flexible and open-minded  and to welcome new, unfamiliar ideas into your heart going forward.

Flexibility is the key to stability.
John Wooden

Share Quote

Be flexible, but stick to your principles.
Eleanor Roosevelt

Share Quote

The boldness of asking deep questions may require unforeseen flexibility if we are to accept the answers.
Brian Greene

Share Quote

If you don’t like change, you are going to like irrelevance even less.
Eric Shinseki

Share Quote

Water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.
Bruce Lee

Share Quote

The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.
Alan Watts

Share Quote

Minds are like parachutes: They only function when open.
Thomas Dewar, 1st Baron Dewar

Share Quote

It’s very dangerous to have a fixed idea. A person with a fixed idea will always find some way of convincing himself in the end that he is right.
Atle Selberg

Share Quote

The hallmark of an open mind is not letting your ideas become your identity. If you define yourself by your opinions, questioning them is a threat to your integrity. If you see yourself as a curious person or a lifelong learner, changing your mind is a moment of growth.
Adam Grant

Share Quote

They are ill discoverers that think there is no land, when they can see nothing but sea.
Francis Bacon

Share Quote

Where there is an open mind there will always be a frontier.
Charles Kettering

Share Quote

You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.
Naguib Mahfouz

Share Quote

Featured image credit: George Long/ Sports Illustrated via Getty Images

Author image
About the Author
Bennett Kleinman
Bennett is a staff writer at Optimism as well as a freelance comedy writer. He's based in New York City.
Play more header background
Play more icon
Daily Question
Fill in the blank: "Ruins, for me, are the beginning. With the debris, you can construct ___." - Anselm Kiefer

More Inspiration

happiness theme icon

Only the ephemeral is of lasting value.

separator icon
Eugène Ionesco
motivation theme icon

Stay close to any sounds that make you glad you are alive.

separator icon
Hafez
hope theme icon

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.

separator icon
Maya Angelou
love theme icon

An inventor fails 999 times, and if he succeeds once, he's in.

separator icon
Charles Kettering
wisdom theme icon

Nobody has ever measured, not even poets, how much the heart can hold.

separator icon
Zelda Fitzgerald
happiness theme icon

I wish that every human life might be pure transparent freedom.

separator icon
Simone de Beauvoir
motivation theme icon

All that you’ve loved is all you own.

separator icon
Tom Waits
hope theme icon

The only difference between success and failure is the ability to take action.

separator icon
Alexander Graham Bell
love theme icon

A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.

separator icon
Yoko Ono
wisdom theme icon

A small act is worth a million thoughts.

separator icon
Ai Weiwei
happiness theme icon

The human mind always makes progress, but it is progress in spirals.

separator icon
Madame de Staël