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100 Inspiring Anaïs Nin Quotes (Take Your Breath Away)

24 Anaïs Nin Quotes on The Mystery of Life & Reality

From the backstabbing co-worker to the meddling sister-in-law, you are in charge of how you react to the people and events in your life. You can either give negativity power over your life or you can choose happiness instead. Take control and choose to focus on what is important in your life. Those who cannot live fully often become destroyers of life.”

Anaïs Nin
Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.
Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.
We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.
We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.
It's all right for a woman to be, above all, human. I am a woman first of all.
It’s all right for a woman to be, above all, human. I am a woman first of all.
We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.
We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.
Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another.
Reality doesn’t impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another.
Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.
Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.

I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn’t impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.”

Anaïs Nin
I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.
I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.
Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.
Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.
Good things happen to those who hustle.
Good things happen to those who hustle.
If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don't write, because our culture has no use for it.
If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it.
Luxury is not a necessity to me, but beautiful and good things are.
Luxury is not a necessity to me, but beautiful and good things are.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations.”

Anaïs Nin
People living deeply have no fear of death.
People living deeply have no fear of death.
The possession of knowledge does not kill the sense of wonder and mystery. There is always more mystery.
The possession of knowledge does not kill the sense of wonder and mystery. There is always more mystery.
The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.
The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.

Our culture made a virtue of living only as extroverts. We discouraged the inner journey, the quest for a center. So we lost our center and have to find it again.”

Anaïs Nin
Whenever you do something that is not aligned with the yearning or your soul—you create suffering.
Whenever you do something that is not aligned with the yearning or your soul—you create suffering.
The personal life deeply lived always expands into truths beyond itself.
The personal life deeply lived always expands into truths beyond itself.
In chaos, there is fertility.
In chaos, there is fertility.
We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.
We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.
If you limit yourself only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is compromise.
If you limit yourself only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is compromise.

My mission, should I choose to accept it, is to find peace with exactly who and what I am. To take pride in my thoughts, my appearance, my talents, my flaws and to stop this incessant worrying that I can’t be loved as I am.”

Anaïs Nin

18 Deep Anaïs Nin Quotes on Love & Relationships

I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naive or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.”

Anaïs Nin
Do not seek the because—in love there is no because, no reason, no explanation, no solutions.
Do not seek the because—in love there is no because, no reason, no explanation, no solutions.
You don’t find love, it finds you. It’s got a little bit to do with destiny, fate, and what’s written in the stars.
You don’t find love, it finds you. It’s got a little bit to do with destiny, fate, and what’s written in the stars.
Where the myth fails, human love begins. Then we love a human being, not our dream, but a human being with flaws.
Where the myth fails, human love begins. Then we love a human being, not our dream, but a human being with flaws.
If I love you it means we share the same fantasies, the same madnesses.
If I love you it means we share the same fantasies, the same madnesses.
How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.
How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.

Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish its source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of witherings, of tarnishings.”

Anaïs Nin
You cannot save people. You can only love them.
You cannot save people. You can only love them.
Only the united beat of sex and heart together can create ecstasy.
Only the united beat of sex and heart together can create ecstasy.
I reserve the right to love many different people at once, and to change my prince often.
I reserve the right to love many different people at once, and to change my prince often.
Age does not protect you from love. But love, to some extent, protects you from age.
Age does not protect you from love. But love, to some extent, protects you from age.
The truly faithless one is the one who makes love to only a fraction of you. And denies the rest.
The truly faithless one is the one who makes love to only a fraction of you. And denies the rest.
I hate men who are afraid of women's strength.
I hate men who are afraid of women’s strength.

Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic.”

Anaïs Nin
In reality, those who satisfy me are those who simply allow me to live with my idea of them.
In reality, those who satisfy me are those who simply allow me to live with my idea of them.
I am lonely, yet not everybody will do.
I am lonely, yet not everybody will do.
The only abnormality is the incapacity to love.
The only abnormality is the incapacity to love.
Our love of each other was like two long shadows kissing without hope of reality.
Our love of each other was like two long shadows kissing without hope of reality.

22 Anaïs Nin Quotes to Inspire Deeper Living

There is not one big cosmic meaning for all; there is only the meaning we each give to our life, an individual meaning, an individual plot, like an individual novel, a book for each person.”

Anaïs Nin
Our life is composed greatly from dreams, from the unconscious, and they must be brought into connection with action. They must be woven together.
Our life is composed greatly from dreams, from the unconscious, and they must be brought into connection with action. They must be woven together.
I take pleasure in my transformations. I look quiet and consistent, but few know how many women there are in me.
I take pleasure in my transformations. I look quiet and consistent, but few know how many women there are in me.
The secret of joy is the mastery of pain.
The secret of joy is the mastery of pain.
I want to make my own discoveries… penetrate the evil which attracts me.
I want to make my own discoveries… penetrate the evil which attracts me.
Creation which cannot express itself becomes madness.
Creation which cannot express itself becomes madness.

I don’t really want to become normal, average, standard. I want merely to gain in strength, in the courage to live out my life more fully, enjoy more, experience more. I want to develop even more original and more unconventional traits.”

Anaïs Nin
Each contact with a human being is so rare, so precious, one should preserve it.
Each contact with a human being is so rare, so precious, one should preserve it.
There are many ways to be free. One of them is to transcend reality by imagination, as I try to do.
There are many ways to be free. One of them is to transcend reality by imagination, as I try to do.
I postpone death by living, by suffering, by error, by risking, by giving, by losing.
I postpone death by living, by suffering, by error, by risking, by giving, by losing.
I am aware of being in a beautiful prison, from which I can only escape by writing.
I am aware of being in a beautiful prison, from which I can only escape by writing.

To hell, to hell with balance! I break glasses; I want to burn, even if I break myself. I want to live only for ecstasy. I’m neurotic, perverted, destructive, fiery, dangerous – lava, inflammable, unrestrained.”

Anaïs Nin
Passion gives me moments of wholeness.
Passion gives me moments of wholeness.
Dreams are necessary to life.
Dreams are necessary to life.
I can elect something I love and absorb myself in it.
I can elect something I love and absorb myself in it.
When one is pretending, the entire body revolts.
When one is pretending, the entire body revolts.
Life is a full circle, widening until it joins the circle motions of the infinite.
Life is a full circle, widening until it joins the circle motions of the infinite.

I will not be just a tourist in the world of images, just watching images passing by which I cannot live in, make love to, possess as permanent sources of joy and ecstasy.”

Anaïs Nin
We do not escape into philosophy, psychology, and art ― we go there to restore our shattered selves into whole ones.
We do not escape into philosophy, psychology, and art ― we go there to restore our shattered selves into whole ones.
I'm restless. Things are calling me away. My hair is being pulled by the stars again.
I’m restless. Things are calling me away. My hair is being pulled by the stars again.
When you make a world tolerable for yourself, you make a world tolerable for others.
When you make a world tolerable for yourself, you make a world tolerable for others.
Life is truly known only to those who suffer, lose, endure adversity, and stumble from defeat to defeat.
Life is truly known only to those who suffer, lose, endure adversity, and stumble from defeat to defeat.

12 Cynical, Controversial, and Funny Anaïs Nin Quotes

Someone told me the delightful story of the crusader who put a chastity belt on his wife and gave the key to his best friend for safekeeping, in case of his death. He had ridden only a few miles away when his friend, riding hard, caught up with him, saying ‘You gave me the wrong key!”

Anaïs Nin
I am only responsible for my own heart, you offered yours up for the smashing my darling. Only a fool would give out such a vital organ.
I am only responsible for my own heart, you offered yours up for the smashing my darling. Only a fool would give out such a vital organ.
Had I not created my whole world, I would certainly have died in other people’s.
Had I not created my whole world, I would certainly have died in other people’s.
Analysis is for those who are paralyzed by life.
Analysis is for those who are paralyzed by life.
When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons.
When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons.
Societies in decline have no use for visionaries.
Societies in decline have no use for visionaries.
I made no resolutions for the New Year. The habit of making plans, of criticizing, sanctioning and molding my life, is too much of a daily event for me.
I made no resolutions for the New Year. The habit of making plans, of criticizing, sanctioning and molding my life, is too much of a daily event for me.

In my childhood diary I wrote: I have decided that it is better not to love anyone, because when you love people, then you have to be separated from them, and that hurts too much.”

Anaïs Nin
Since desire always goes towards that which is our direct opposite, it forces us to love that which will make us suffer.
Since desire always goes towards that which is our direct opposite, it forces us to love that which will make us suffer.
Shame is the lie someone told you about yourself.
Shame is the lie someone told you about yourself.
I’m sick of my own romanticism.
I’m sick of my own romanticism.
I am like a snake who has already bitten. I retreat from a direct battle while knowing the slow effect of the poison.
I am like a snake who has already bitten. I retreat from a direct battle while knowing the slow effect of the poison.

17 Poetic and Insightful Anaïs Nin Quotes for Greater Wisdom

Dreams pass into the reality of action. From the actions stems the dream again; and this interdependence produces the highest form of living.”

Anaïs Nin
Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.
Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.
Sometimes we reveal ourselves when we are least like ourselves.
Sometimes we reveal ourselves when we are least like ourselves.
Something is always born of excess: great art was born of great terror, great loneliness, great inhibitions, instabilities, and it always balances them.
Something is always born of excess: great art was born of great terror, great loneliness, great inhibitions, instabilities, and it always balances them.
I believe one writes because one has to create a world in which one can live.
I believe one writes because one has to create a world in which one can live.

It is the function of art to renew our perception. What we are familiar with we cease to see. The writer shakes up the familiar scene, and, as if by magic, we see a new meaning in it.”

Anaïs Nin
We are going to the moon that is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself.
We are going to the moon that is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself.
She lacks confidence, she craves admiration insatiably. She lives on the reflections of herself in the eyes of others. She does not dare to be herself.
She lacks confidence, she craves admiration insatiably. She lives on the reflections of herself in the eyes of others. She does not dare to be herself.
When others asked the truth of me, I was convinced it was not the truth they wanted, but an illusion they could bear to live with.
When others asked the truth of me, I was convinced it was not the truth they wanted, but an illusion they could bear to live with.
Ordinary life does not interest me. I seek only the high moments. I am in accord with the surrealists, searching for the marvelous.
Ordinary life does not interest me. I seek only the high moments. I am in accord with the surrealists, searching for the marvelous.

What can I do with my happiness? How can I keep it, conceal it, bury it where I may never lose it? I want to kneel as it falls over me like rain, gather it up with lace and silk, and press it over myself again.”

Anaïs Nin
Music melts all the separate parts of our bodies together.
Music melts all the separate parts of our bodies together.
The enemy of a love is never outside, it’s not a man or a woman, it’s what we lack in ourselves.
The enemy of a love is never outside, it’s not a man or a woman, it’s what we lack in ourselves.
Everything with me is either worship and passion or pity and understanding. I hate rarely, though when I hate, I hate murderously.
Everything with me is either worship and passion or pity and understanding. I hate rarely, though when I hate, I hate murderously.

We are like sculptors, constantly carving out of others the image we long for, need, love or desire, often against reality, against their benefit, and always, in the end, a disappointment, because it does not fit them.”

Anaïs Nin
This diary is my kief, hashish and opium pipe. This is my drug and my vice.
This diary is my kief, hashish and opium pipe. This is my drug and my vice.
The dream was always running ahead of me. To catch up, to live for a moment in unison, was the miracle.
The dream was always running ahead of me. To catch up, to live for a moment in unison, was the miracle.

Top 7 Long Anaïs Nin Quotes That I Enjoyed Immensely

I prefer by far the warmth and softness to mere brilliancy and coldness. Some people remind me of sharp dazzling diamonds. Valuable but lifeless and loveless. Others, of the simplest field flowers, with hearts full of dew and with all the tints of celestial beauty reflected in their modest petals.

Anaïs Nin

The monster I kill every day is the monster of realism. The monster who attacks me every day is destruction. Out of the duel comes the transformation. I turn destruction into creation over and over again.”

Anaïs Nin

If what Proust says is true, that happiness is the absence of fever, then I will never know happiness. For I am possessed by a fever for knowledge, experience, and creation.”

Anaïs Nin

There are very few human beings who receive the truth, complete and staggering, by instant illumination. Most of them acquire it fragment by fragment, on a small scale, by successive developments, cellularly, like a laborious mosaic.”

Anaïs Nin

I disregard the proportions, the measures, the tempo of the ordinary world. I refuse to live in the ordinary world as ordinary women. To enter ordinary relationships. I want ecstasy. I am a neurotic — in the sense that I live in my world. I will not adjust myself to the world. I am adjusted to myself.”

Anaïs Nin

When your beauty struck me, it dissolved me. Deep down, I am not different from you. I dreamed you, I wished for your existence. I see in you that part of me which is you. I surrender my sincerity because if I love you it means we share the same fantasies, we share the same madness.”

Anaïs Nin

The body is an instrument which only gives off music when it is used as a body. Always an orchestra, and just as music traverses walls, so sensuality traverses the body and reaches up to ecstasy.”

Anaïs Nin


Anaïs Nin Short Biography

Born on February 21, 1903, Neuilly, France, Angela Anaïs Juana Antolina Rosa Edelmira Nin y Culmell, professionally known as Anaïs Nin, is a passionate eroticist, novelist, and short-story writer.

Her journals – the eight published volumes of her personal diaries – is a global sensation, granting Anaïs Nin international fame.

Nin went to New York with her mother in 1914 and was educated there. She began writing professionally in 1931.

The secret of joy is the mastery of pain.”

Anaïs Nin

However, it wasn’t until the latter half of the 1960s (more than 30 years of writing) that Nin was recognized as one of the leading female writers of the 20th century and a source of inspiration for women around the globe.

Nin first volume of her diaries (published in 1966) had garnered many interests to the five-volume roman-fleuve (continuos Novel) that include:

The success of her diaries also attracted interests to her earlier work, Cities of the Interior (1959).

Like most influential writers, Anaïs Nin’s literary contribution polarized her readers tremendously which inevitably contributed to the subject of controversy (and continuous debate) even years after Nin passed on.

Opinions between haters and fans were further divided by the posthumous Delta of Venus: Erotica (1977) and earlier unpublished erotic short stories and novels such as:

To learn more about Anaïs Nin and her literary contribution, read:

Here are the best Anaïs Nin quotes about love, life, and relationships so you can be inspired to live deeply without holding back.

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