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20 George Carlin Quotes That Apply to Business

George Carlin

George Carlin was a stand-up comedian, actor, author, social critic, and amateur philosopher. He was born in Manhattan in 1937, and he died in Santa Monica in 2008 at the age of 71. Carlin is best known for his reflections on politics and his black humor. He liked to use religion, psychology, society, and a range of taboo subjects in his work. In his hilarious performances, he said many things that people now use as inspirational and motivational quotes. Here are 20 George Carlin quotes that apply to business.

20. On Taking Things In Your Stride

“Don’t sweat the petty things, and don’t pet the sweaty things”.

This quote listed on Inspiration Feed says that you shouldn’t let all the little things get to you. There are many elements of a business that are potentially a cause for concern, and there are multiple aspects of individual progress that could cause you to worry. However, if you worried about every little thing, you will feel permanently stresses. Try to stop worrying about the little things and focus on the bigger picture. Face minor obstacles with enthusiasm, deal with them, and move on.

19. On Facing Challenges

“Just because you got the monkey off your back doesn’t mean the circus has left town”.

When you face a challenge in your business, it is important to deal with the situation as soon as possible. You should also look for ways to prevent the situation from arising again and put strategies in place accordingly. Otherwise, you may have dealt with the initial problem, but the hurdles may continue if you have not been proactive in putting preventative measures in place.

18. On the Importance of Asking Questions

“Don’t just teach your children to read… teach them to question what they read, teach them to question everything”.

Asking questions is a vital aspect of learning. It is part of the process of self-improvement, and it can help you to advance your business. It is also important that you encourage your team to also ask questions. This will help them to work better as a team, give them opportunities for continued professional development, and help them to make positive contributions to your business.

17. On Taking On the Competition

“If you can’t beat them, arrange to have them beaten”.

There is no suggestion that you actually go out and cause violence to the competition, but you can apply this George Carlin quote to business in terms of standing up to the competition. One of the biggest challenges that businesses face is stand up to the competition, especially if there are bigger and more established businesses in your market. If you cannot beat them, you should look for strategies to at least stand beside them to give you the potential to beat them in the future. Alternatively, find your own niche to make you stand out from the crowd and attract a different target market.

16. On Getting the Balance Right

“We’ve learned how to make a living but not a life. We’ve added years to life, not life to years”.

Having a successful business can lead to big things for you professionally and financially. However, this is not worthwhile if you do not have an enjoyable life as a result of all your hard work. It is important to get the balance just right so that you are effective at work but also have a private life that gives you pleasure and satisfaction.

15. On Standing Out from the Crowd

“If it requires a uniform, it’s a worthless endeavor”.

It is possible that George Carlin was saying that he enjoyed doing his own thing and didn’t see himself as being suited to jobs that involved wearing a uniform. However, you can also apply his quote to business situations. Uniformity will not make your business stand out, so it is vital that your business has features that differentiate it from others.

14. On Keeping Going No Matter What

“When you step on the brakes, your life is in your foot’s hands”.

Occasionally, you may need to take a short break from work or slow down on your projects. This is understandable or else you will reach burn out. However, you shouldn’t have your foot on the brakes for too long or you might miss out on opportunities or let the competition overtake you.

13. On Creative Thinking

“Think off-center”.

If you only ever think the same way everyone else, you will only achieve the same success as the average person. To achieve great things, you need to do things differently to everyone else. This involves thinking outside the box. If you have trouble with creative thinking, make sure you have someone on your team with strengths in this area.

12. On Being Yourself

“… but there is an I in independence, individuality, and integrity”.

In this George Carlin quote, Carlin was talking about the saying ‘there is no I in team’. As he quite rightly points out, there is an I in independence, individuality, and integrity. This explains that although teamwork is important, what you can individually bring to a business is equally relevant. You should always be yourself, and give your business the best you have to offer.

11. On Appreciating Your Team

“The caterpillar does all the work, but the butterfly gets all the publicity”.

In relation to business, it is usually the boss, owner, manager, or team leader that gets all the recognition for the work, and the contributions made by the rest of the team are often overlooked. This is often the case even if other members of the team have completed the largest proportion of the work. If they do not get any recognition for their contributions, team members can feel undervalued and may lose motivation. If you want your team to remain motivated and to continue giving their work their all, then you must show appreciation and acknowledge their hard work.

10. On Looking at Things from a Different Perspective

“Some people see the glass half-full, others see it half empty. I see a glass that is twice as big as it needs to be”.

If you have a group of people all looking at the same situation, then each of them will have a different perspective or focus on different aspects of a project. When you hit a standstill and do not know what actions to take to move forward, it can help to look at things from a different perspective. If you struggle to look at things from a different angle, then speak to your team and ask their opinions because they may offer a different approach you had not considered.

9. On Appreciating Small Breakthroughs and Achievements

“I like it when a flower or a little tuft of grass grows through a crack in the concrete”

During the times when things are not going well, things may seem bleak. It is all too easy to get stuck in a rut of focusing on the negatives and to lose motivation. When these times hit your business, you should focus on the positives, no matter how small they are. Consider every minor achievement or breakthrough as making progress in your business.

8. On Becoming Successful

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away”.

It is possible to interpret this George Carlin quote as meaning to aim high to achieve things. You are only truly a success if you have done something that is noticed by others, and if you have made some fantastic memories along the way. In this sense, it also means that you cannot measure your success by the money you make, but by whether you have enjoyed the journey or not.

7. On Ignoring the Doubters

“Those who dance are considered insane by those who cannot hear the music”.

Listed on Everyday Power, this quote refers to how the people who succeed are the ones who have a vision that others do not have. People with a vision and dreams are often mocked by people who have no ambitions or goals in life. If you are in the category of people who have visions and dreams, then it is important that you ignore the doubters as they will never have the same views as you.

6. On Self-Belief

“The reason I talk to myself is because I’m the only one whose answers I accept”.

To become successful, you will need an element of self-belief. If you do not believe in yourself and your own abilities, then you cannot expect other people to believe that you can achieve your goals. You must have enough belief in yourself to trust your own instincts stand firm in the decisions you make.

5. On Appreciating the Individual Talents of Your Team

“People are wonderful one at a time. Each of them has an entire hologram of the universe somewhere within them”.

You should look at your team not only as a whole but also as a group of individuals. Each person you have working for you has something different to offer. Every person has different knowledge and skillsets, and a different range of strengths and weaknesses. You must identify the strengths and weaknesses of your team so that you can use their talents to your best advantage. It is also an opportunity to help their professional development so they enhance their strengths and work on their weaknesses.

4. On Making Your Mark

“Everyone should try to scratch their name on the bomb of life”.

Aiming to become the best that you can possibly be is something that everyone should strive for in life, not just in business. Everyone should want to make their mark in one way or another, regardless of whether this is by helping others, building something impressive, making money, or supporting those around you. Each person has the potential to make their mark in life in their own way. Think about what you want to achieve in life and make yourself the master of your own destiny.

3. On Looking at the Positives

“There is a humorous side to every situation. The challenge is to find it”.

In this quote, Carlin tells people that there is always a positive in every situation, even if things look very negative at first. The trick is to take a negative and find a positive somewhere. Not only will this help you to remain optimistic and motivated, but it can also help you to transform a problem into an opportunity. Likewise, when you make a mistake, use it as a learning opportunity rather than considering it a failure on your part. This will help you to move forward beyond your difficulties.

2. On Rating Yourself Against Others

“Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?”.

To a certain extent, everyone compares themselves to other people and rates their achievements accordingly. However, this George Carlin quote listed on Brainy Quote warns of the downfalls of making such comparisons. There is always the risk of defending yourself and thinking you are always right while dismissing the under achievements of others and mocking those who have done better in life. Instead of making such comparisons, rate yourself on your own standards. Forget about what everybody else is doing, and focus on achieving your own goals instead.

1. On Making Progress

“The status quo sucks”.

According to The Famous People, one of the top George Carlin quotes that apply to business is this one about making progress and not hitting a plateau. If you want to succeed in the business environment, then you should always strive to do better and move forward, rather than settling for what you have already achieved.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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