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Lisa Ling Quotes

Lisa Ling Journalist

Lisa Ling quotes: on battling dyslexia, dropping out of college and why you should travel more.

“Try to accomplish things you have always dreamt of while you can.  I know it sounds cliché, but the biggest lesson I have learned is that life is precious; enjoy it while it lasts.”

“Allow yourself to have an open mind.  It’s hard to do these days because I think we are predisposed to hearing from people who share our same opinion.”

“When workers feel like someone is listening to them and is sensitive to their concerns and needs, it actually incentivizes them to work harder.  It goes beyond being just a job.”

“Refrain from being too judgmental.  You’ll often be surprised by what people have to offer.”

“There’s so much gray to every story.  Nothing is so black and white.”

“We have to start seeing people as human beings.  Our entire humanity depends on that.”

“We all need to provide the checks and balances for democracy.”

“I think we need to take a look at the technology, but not depend on it for things that require humanity.”

“I had trouble concentrating in school, and it really affected my grades and self-confidence.  I had to work and try very hard to get ahead.”

“My parents divorced when I was seven, and television was a ‘constant babysitter’ for me and my sister.  But over time, I found comfort in watching it.  I thought if I could be on TV, I could have a better life one day.”

“In high school, my attention issues had become a much bigger problem.  I could go through an entire period and not retain a sentence if I wasn’t interested in the topic or the subject matter.”

“After high school I joined the team of Channel One, another kids news show.  I worked alongside Anderson Cooper, who also got his reporting start there.  He, too, has a learning and thinking difference: dyslexia.  Channel One sent me around the world to cover political unrest and complex global issues.  When I wasn’t traveling, I tried to attend college at the University of Southern California but ended up dropping out.”

“A doctor confirmed what I had suspected: I met the criteria for having ADHD.  That moment was a turning point.  My head is kind of spinning.  But I feel a little bit of relief because for so long, I’ve been fighting my attention issues and I’ve been so frustrated with this inability to focus.”

“I’m grateful to have developed coping strategies over time.  I do things that help me focus.  I have a quiet time every day.  I have learned when my mind has gone off in every direction that I need to focus.  I also exercise regularly, which helps.”

“For whatever reason, I am the way I am, and I’ve tried really hard to not let it inhibit the things that are important me.  In a strange way I do feel like it has helped me.  I can hyperfocus on things that I am excited and passionate about.”

“Pushing myself helped me become the person that I am.  It inspired a work ethic in me that I may not have had, if I hadn’t had those struggles.”

“I started working in television quite young, actually, and I definitely felt very insecure about what I looked like.”

“I started working in this business when I was 16 years old.  I started reporting when I was 18 years old.  A lot of people gave me a chance.  Now we bring in these young, smart, hungry people to work for us.  If you’ve been with me for a while, if you bust your ass, if you have put your time in, I’m someone who loves to give people an opportunity to flex their muscles.”

“I’m simply more interested in learning how different people live.  I find there is tremendous value in knowing about each other, and I feel like, personally, I’ve become smarter and more evolved and more well-versed as a result of having these kinds of experiences.”

“I don’t ever write questions when I do interviews because I really want the interview to be like conversation.  When you have a conversation with people naturally things will come out in the course of that very natural, organic conversation that will always surprise you because people don’t feel like they are being interrogated.”

“I truly believe everybody wants to be heard, and everybody does have a story to tell, and so I try to give everyone that opportunity.”

“The best advice I can give young people is travel if you can because travel, to me, is a game-changer.  If you are able to travel, it just makes you more marketable at the end of the day.  You’re more marketable because you will be able to expand the conversation in ways someone who is not well-traveled wouldn’t be able to.  Travel ignites curiosity, and that’s something I think we could all use a lot more of in media.”

“At the end of the day, TV is supposed to be entertaining.  But it’s important for me that there’s some take-away value from it.”

“My hope is that I can somehow raise the level of consciousness about world events.”

“Personally, I’ve always known that I wanted to go back to work because I’m confident, and I’m certain that my daughter will have a better mother in me if I’m doing the things that I’m excited about and that I’m passionate about.”

“I’ve found an interesting niche that I really love.  My work has always been about the work.”

“I think as someone who grew up without a lot of money, you always think the bottom is going to be pulled out from under you at some point, especially doing this kind of work.  I think there’s always a little bit of fear in me that, like, ‘You can’t turn things down!’  But I have gotten to a place where I don’t want—and maybe you can chalk this up to age a little bit—to do something that I would like to not have to do.”

“I feel like my life is very stressful, but no more stressful than other people.  It’s very stressful to juggle a family life and a work life.  But what helps me keep things in perspective is just knowing how many other women are having to struggle a lot harder than I am because childcare is not as readily accessible.”

“Follow your kid’s lead.  Invite them to communicate how they are feeling.  Allow your child to lead without you intervening, but let them know that they can talk to you… and this is a process they can go through with you.  What would be great is if parents can say to their kids, ‘Just hold my hand… let’s figure out how you can be happiest and most comfortable, together.’”

“Parents are working more than ever before and unable to monitor what kids are eating at home, and schools are selling astronomical amounts of junk food in order to supplement shrinking budgets.  It’s a ticking time bomb, and America’s children are exploding.”

“It is said that the way to prevent obesity is not to allow kids to become overweight in the first place.  But it takes a multi-pronged approach that has to start with parents.  Kids are just too young to understand the consequences of obesity.”

“Make your relationship your number-one priority.”

“You should treat your marriage like a business that you wouldn’t want to let fail.”

“When you take the time to understand why your parents did the things they did, you stand a good chance of learning more about your own behavior.”

“We are such a product of our upbringing and environment.”

“Coming from an Asian culture, I was always taught to respect my elders, to be a better listener than a talker.”

“The Girl Scouts is where I became acquainted with the idea that a woman can do anything.  Learning that early on has a tremendous impact on the development of a young girl’s personality.  It had a huge impact on me.  Girl Scouts is where I first learned about philanthropy and fell in love with the concept of helping others.  In my troop, this was very important.  We did a lot of community service like picking up trash and feeding the homeless.  Loving humankind was something that echoed throughout my time at Girl Scouts.”

“The best education I have ever received was through travel.”

“The best advice I can give is to be a good listener and try to travel out of your comfort zone as much as you can, because I really think traveling—even if it’s not overseas—makes you become a smarter person.  Your ability to expand the dialogue increases so much more.”

“I fancy myself as being a fairly competent person.”

“Whenever I start to blame God for what I encounter in the world, I stop and remind myself that maybe it is I who should be doing more.  We get so hung up on the notion of success that we can easily forget about being of service to others.  I have actually found that giving of oneself is far more fulfilling than gifting oneself.”

“Our time on Earth is so random.”

“Too often, we spend our days thinking about what we don’t have rather than what we do have.  Be grateful every day.”

Related: Jane Pauley quotes.

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