6 Inspiring and Provocative Quotes from Carrie Fisher
Author: V. Taylor
Though recently departed from this world, Carrie Fisher leaves with us multiple gifts. These include her famous role as Princess Leia, an empowering wordsmith, and an advocate for mental health awareness. Fisher has long been outspoken on many topics and is noted for telling it like it is. So much of what she’s quoted to have said or written holds amazing wisdom. Let these provocative quotes inspire you to live like Princess Leia and General Organa—strongly, willfully, and smartly.
- “If you have the expectation that you’re going to be happy throughout your life—more to the point, if you have a need to be comfortable all the time—well, among other things, you have the makings of a classic drug addict or alcoholic.”
Around the 1980s, Fisher struggled with drugs, alcohol, and depression (which was later diagnosed as bipolar disorder). Fisher was opened up about her mental health problems and addictions in her books and through interviews over time. What she touches on here is an honest truth: that sometimes we choose drugs because we don’t know how to cope with life otherwise. Drugs and alcohol definitely make dealing with issues and people much more tolerable by offering peaceful rest and vivid fantasies or relaxation. Yet, we know the long term effects of these things.
Life isn’t easy. Though we do understand this to a point, we always search for ways to mitigate our troubles rather than facing them head on. However, if we take inspiration not solely from Fisher’s fictional heroine roles but from her zeal and ambition, then accepting the challenges life brings seems doable.
There will be tough times, low times, miserable times—but if you press on, you will achieve great things.
- “I don’t hate hardly ever, and when I love, I love for miles and miles. A love so big it should be either outlawed or it should have a capital and its own currency.”
Perhaps Fisher is talking about Han Solo (Harrison Ford) here, for when they were on the set of the original Star Wars movies, the sparks were flying. Years later, in an interview with The Guardian, Fisher talked about how intense her love was for Ford, how she’d never forget him.
Then again, she also said she should instead fall in love with furniture instead of people…
The most striking statement from the quote is Fisher’s use of “I don’t hate hardly ever.” To say that you are sometimes hateful (or in Fisher’s case, most of the time) is not very accepted in today’s society because of the pain it brings. However, hate is a human emotion—a very strong one. To deny it, to not assess it whenever you feel it is an egregious error. To understand what it means to love deeply, you must also understand hatred. That way, hate can be corrected.
The second part about a love so enormous it needs to be outlawed also has weight. Throughout history, love has been “illegal,” because it is an emotion that runs wild and free. Pure love is one emotion that can capsize tyrants and conquer evil. So let yourself love and build a nation within yourself where those you care about are free to enter.
- “I don’t want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.”
For dancers, painters, photographers, and other visual and performing artists, there is always the question if life is art or if art is life. What do you think? Fisher clearly believed that there is a hidden beauty within every facet of life. While your definition of beauty may be different than hers, this only proves a point.
How you view the world changes the world you see. To imitate something means to put up niceties and false promises. You can look at a painting and revel in the image, but that’s all it is—a flat, lifeless thing. When life is art, it’s abstract, grasping, and riveting. Art may disgust some and mesmerize others. But hasn’t that always been the point?
Color outside the lines. Use different mediums. Create your own art style and paint your own world.
- “Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.”
Fear is a powerful sensation. Fear intermingles with curiosity. It’s okay to not be entirely sure of the correct step or how to act. Fisher says it best, “What’s important is the action.” If you keep moving forward through the uncertainty, at least you’re moving in some direction. Staying proactive when you’d rather shutdown and give in is a pivotal strategy towards success. Proceeding forward into the unknown might be scary, but staying where you are is worse—especially if where you are presently is not where you want to be.
Confidence is something built up over time by trusting in your intuition. You won’t ever get confident if you always second guess yourself.
When Fisher was cast into the role of Princess Leia, she didn’t know what she was getting herself into. She didn’t know what acting in the role would bring her, but she drove courageously forward, choosing to fight every challenge that stood before her.
- “Your innermost urges will tell you what strategy to employ to accomplish your special purpose while doing the work you enjoy.”
What Fisher is touching on here is the sentiment behind “following your heart.” However, depending on who you’re talking to, the heart is vague, mutable thing. The heart gets easily confused, and we tend to rely on it too much to help us make decisions.
That’s why this quote from Carrie Fisher explains the idea much better. When you tap into the true purpose for your presence here in the world, you will realize there’s more to it than heart. Where the heart flutters and shakes, this urge is strong and incorrigible. You can smother it beneath obligations, but it doesn’t die. From time to time, you’ll remember your passions, and they flare back to life, strong as ever.
When you listen to these urges, you get in touch with something indescribable. You get in touch with your real potential. Within that, there is an unlimited amount of wisdom at your disposal. That is why so many people are choosing to do what makes them feel good and happy rather than what brings home the biggest paycheck. Abundance is not solely based on money. When you are doing what you love and funneling all your spirit into that, you receive the wealth of the universe—opportunities, imagination, friends and family.
- “I haven’t ever changed who I am. I’ve just gotten more accepting of it. Being happy isn’t getting what you want, it’s wanting what you have.”
Oftentimes, we grow up with these hopes of being a certain type of person. You might have gazed longingly at the bodies of supermodels, athletic stars, or even a famous inventor with the hope of one day constructing yourself to be just like them. Maturing in adults does something to us though.
We don’t just wind up with responsibilities, relationships, and an aging reflection staring back at us. We often wind up never becoming like that person we hoped to become. Why is that?
Fisher never once chased after the image of Princess Leia, and she wasn’t the type of person to try to maintain the graces of that character either. Fisher was who she was, and she was quite all right with that. But what can we hope to learn from that self-acceptance?
Maybe everything we’re meant to be comes from within. No Jedi mind tricks here. Everything you are is who you are right now. You simply have to look deep down, find the sleeping power lying dormant, and seize it.
Though Star Wars brought Fisher much success, she will forever be remembered not solely for that outstanding role, but for these tidbits of wisdom. Use these quotes to define your own goals and triumphs, and never stop fighting back against that which might bog you down—like steel bikinis and depression.