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50 Great William James Quotes, Sayings & Quotations

Explore and Share Popular William James Quotes, Quotations etc. Enjoy These William James Quotes By Sharing With Your Friends, Relatives and Love One’s On Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter, Gmail, etc. William James was an American philosopher and psychologist who was also trained as a physician. The first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States.

Great William James Quotes

Compared to what we ought to be, we are half awake.

A chain is no stronger than its weakest link, and life is after all a chain.

Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.

A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

A man has as many social selves as there are individuals who recognize him.

Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune.

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.

Action may not bring happiness but there is no happiness without action.

Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not.

An act has no ethical quality whatever unless it be chosen out of several all equally possible.

An idea, to be suggestive, must come to the individual with the force of revelation.

Be willing to have it so. Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune.

Begin to be now what you will be hereafter.

Belief creates the actual fact.

Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humor is just common sense, dancing.

Could the young but realize how soon they will become mere walking bundles of habits, they would give more heed to their conduct while in the plastic state.

Popular William James Quotes

Do something every day for no other reason than you would rather not do it, so that when the hour of dire need draws nigh, it may find you not unnerved and untrained to stand the test.

Every man who possibly can should force himself to a holiday of a full month in a year, whether he feels like taking it or not.

Everybody should do at least two things each day that he hates to do, just for practice.

Faith means belief in something concerning which doubt is theoretically possible.

Genius… means little more than the faculty of perceiving in an unhabitual way.

Great emergencies and crises show us how much greater our vital resources are than we had supposed.

How to gain, how to keep, how to recover happiness is in fact for most men at all times the secret motive of all they do, and of all they are willing to endure.

Human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.

I don’t sing because I’m happy; I’m happy because I sing.

I will act as if what I do makes a difference.

If any organism fails to fulfil its potentialities, it becomes sick.


If merely ‘feeling good’ could decide, drunkenness would be the supremely valid human experience.

If the grace of God miraculously operates, it probably operates through the subliminal door.

If you believe that feeling bad or worrying long enough will change a past or future event, then you are residing on another planet with a different reality system.

If you care enough for a result, you will most certainly attain it.

Famous William James Quotes

If you want a quality, act as if you already had it.

In business for yourself, not by yourself.

In the dim background of mind we know what we ought to be doing but somehow we cannot start.

Individuality is founded in feeling; and the recesses of feeling, the darker, blinder strata of character, are the only places in the world in which we catch real fact in the making, and directly perceive how events happen, and how work is actually done.

Is life worth living? It all depends on the liver.

It is only by risking our persons from one hour to another that we live at all. And often enough our faith beforehand in an uncertified result is the only thing that makes the result come true.

It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect its successful outcome.

It is well for the world that in most of us, by the age of thirty, the character has set like plaster, and will never soften again.

It is wrong always, everywhere, and for everyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.

Knowledge about life is one thing; effective occupation of a place in life, with its dynamic currents passing through your being, is another.

Let everything you do be done as if it makes a difference.

Man can alter his life by altering his thinking.

Man lives for science as well as bread.

Many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

Metaphysics means nothing but an unusually obstinate effort to think clearly.

Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they’ve got a second.

Best William James Quotes

No matter how full a reservoir of maxims one may possess, and no matter how good one’s sentiments may be, if one has not taken advantage of every concrete opportunity to act, one’s character may remain entirely unaffected for the better.

Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.

One hearty laugh together will bring enemies into a closer communion of heart than hours spent on both sides in inward wrestling with the mental demon of uncharitable feeling.

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