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Quotes From Children’s Book That Apply To Us In Adulthood

Children’s books may have taught us a bit more about adulting that we thought.

We were too young to realize it at the time, but lots of children’s books are filled with profound wisdom that is very helpful to us in adulthood. We can be reminded of a little thing or two by revisiting some of our childhood favorites.

Quotes From Children’s Book That Apply To Us In Adulthood

On Love & Friendship 

  • Piglet: “How do you spell love?” Pooh: “You don’t spell it, you feel it.” – Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne
  • “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” – Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne
  • “‘Why did you do all this for me?’ he asked. ‘I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.’ ‘You have been my friend,’ replied Charlotte. ‘That is itself is a tremendous thing.'” – Charlotte’s Web, E.B. White 
  • “How much good inside a day? Depends how good you live ’em. How much love inside a friend? Depends how much you give ’em.” – A Light In The Attic, Shel Silverstein 

On Happiness

  • “If you have good thoughts, they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.” – The Twits, Roald Dahl
  • “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” – The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery 
  • “We all can dance,” he said, “if we find the music that we love.” – Giraffes Can’t Dance, Giles Andreae

On Getting Through Hard Times

  • “Promise me you’ll remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think.”  – Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne
  • “The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid.” – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Frank Baum
  • “If things start happening, don’t worry, don’t stew, just go right along and you’ll start happening too.” – Oh, the Paces You’ll Go!, Dr. Seuss
  • “It has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. My mom says some days are like that. Even in Australia.” – Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, Judith Viorst 

On Possibility

  • “Listen to the mustn’ts child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… anything can happen, child, anything can be.” – Shel Silverstein 
  • “Above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you, because the greatest secrets areaways hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it. – Roald Dahl, The Minpins 
  • “‘What day is it?’, asked Pooh. ‘It’s today,’ squeaked Piglet. ‘My favorite day,’ said Pooh.” – Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne
  • “But all the magic I have known. I’ve had to make myself.” – “Magic,” Where the Sidewalk Ends, Shelf Silverstein 
  • “Sometimes, I’ve believe as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll 

On Change

  • “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what to know. You are the one who’ll decide where to go.” – Oh! The Places You’ll Go, Dr. Seuss
  • “The moment where you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever being able to do it.” – Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie 
  • “It’s no use to go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll 

On Work

  • “In ever job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun, and the job’s a game.” – Mary Poppins, P.L. Travers 

On Doing Good 

  • “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – The Lion and the Mouse, Aesop
  • “A person’s a person, no matter how small.” – Horton Hears a Who, Dr. Seuss
  • “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” – The Lorax, Dr. Seuss 
  • “The more he gave away, the more delighted he became.” – The Rainbow Fish, Marcus Pfister 

On Life 

  • “Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” – Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit
  • “And Max, the king of all wild things, was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all.” –Where the Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak
  • “I like it better here, where I can sit just quietly and smell the flowers.” – The Story of Ferdinand, Munro Leaf 
  • “Inside all of us is hope. Inside all of us is fear. Inside all of us is… a wild thing.” – Where The Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak 
  • “But there was one other thing that the grown-ups also knew, and it was this: that however small the chance might be of striking lucky, the chance is there. The chance had to be there. This particular bar of chocolate had as much chance as any other of having a Golden Ticket.” – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl

These quotes can remind us of what really matters during challenging times. Don’t be shy about picking up your favorite children’s stories every now and again. They hold lessons beyond their years. 

About the Author

Michelle Ioannou

Michelle graduated from Fordham University with a Bachelors of Arts '13 and a Master of Arts '14. She's currently working in corporate America with a side of freelance writing. She wants you to learn from her experiences and mistakes so your 20s can be your best decade. When she's not working, she's likely planning her escape to a tropical island.