Communications Wisdom from Maya Angelou


Image: Getty Images

Image: Getty Images

Award winning and world-renowned writer Maya Angelou died this week at the age of 86. By all accounts, Angelou lived a full life, traveling the world as an artist, civil rights activist and teacher. She received honors from numerous groups for her writing and civic work, including a Pulitzer Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and more than thirty honorary degrees.

Angelou was a master communicator whose observations on life, race and identity resonated in her writing. Her words also offer some insight and inspiration for PR communicators. Here’s a brief sample of Maya Angelou’s wisdom:

  • The idea is to write so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight to the heart.
  • Making a decision to write was a lot like deciding to jump into a frozen lake.
  • If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.
  • If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.
  • You should never make someone a priority who views you as an option.
  • Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.
  • There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.
  • The best candy shop a child can be left alone in is the library.
  • You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.
  • At the end of the day people won’t remember what you said or did; they will remember how you made them feel.

Follow Richard Brownell: @RickBrownell


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About Richard Brownell

Richard Brownell is Group Content Manager at PR News. He has several years' experience in developing and producing online events. Richard is a published author with several titles for young audiences to his credit. He has also written political commentary for several popular websites and his stage plays have been produced in New York and other major cities.



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