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  • It was not ... that she was unaware of the frayed and ragged edges of life. She would merely iron them out with a firm hand and neatly hem them down.

  • We are most deeply asleep at the switch when we fancy we control any switches at all.

  • ... that is always our problem, not how to get control of people, but how all together we can get control of a situation.

    • Mary Parker Follett,
    • in L. Urwick, ed., Freedom and Co-ordination: Lectures in Business Organisation ()
  • It is easy to substitute our will for that of the child by means of suggestion or coercion; but when we have done this we have robbed him of his greatest right, the right to construct his own personality.

  • So much of life is happenstance. It makes me laugh when I go to a bookstore and see all those titles about controlling your life. You're lucky if you can control your bladder.

  • I am afraid we are little better than straws upon the water; we may flatter ourselves that we swim, when the current carries us along.

  • Not everyone's life is what they make it. Some people's life is what other people make it.

  • Exert control through people, not upon them.

  • ... she's coiled around her family and her house like a python ...

  • Coercive measures may have a restraining effect for a time, but can never subdue an untractable spirit: it is only by engaging the affections and enlarging the understanding, that the heart can be meliorated or principles be formed; for like a bow forcibly bent, the mind recoils from oppression with elastic power.

  • ... there is no way really to make anyone do anything.

  • Attempts to control others always fall back on the old stand-bys of force and persuasion.

  • What I try to control ends up controlling me.

  • Trust is fine, but control is better.

  • Mother is afraid that Erika is thinking now, and she expresses her fear. A person who doesn't speak could easily be thinking. Mother demands that Erika reveal her thoughts, rather than let them eat into her. If Erika thinks anything, she has to tell Mother, to keep her informed. Mother is scared of silence.

  • Whatever we try to control does have control over us and our life.

  • Control is an illusion ...

  • Sometimes we are like the man who pushes a cart down a hill and then jumps into it as it gets rolling. We are responsible, of course, for getting it started like that. But once we've got it rolling, we can't stop it with the same ease. We are caught up in something, and we must go on. Our only hope is that finally the cart will arrive at the bottom of the hill and stop of its own accord and we can get out.

  • The liberation, thrill, and excitement when I climb into the cockpit is indescribable to those who have not taken the controls in their own hands. The sky is not the limit — it's just a view.

    • Aris,
    • in Kate T. Parker, Strong Is the New Pretty: A Celebration of Girls Being Themselves ()