Magical Life Advice from Muppets Creator Jim Henson

“I know I drive some people crazy with what seems like ridiculous optimism, but it has always worked for me,” Muppets founder Jim Henson once said. But it’s exactly that optimism that continues to make the puppeteering auteur stand out from a crowd of creators. Today would have been Henson’s 80th birthday. Here are 20 positive and charming quotes from Henson for better living.

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“Life’s like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending.”

“As children, we all live in a world of imagination, of fantasy, and for some of us that world of make-believe continues into adulthood.”

“I’ve never felt any sense of competition with anybody, and we’re all friends. We’re all good friends.”

“There’s great value in being able to step back and laugh at yourself, at life and at attitudes. Laughter helps you put everything into perspective.”

“If you care about what you do and work hard at it, there isn’t anything you can’t do if you want to.”

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“Watch out for each other. Love everyone and forgive everyone, including yourself. Forgive your anger. Forgive your guilt. Your shame. Your sadness. Embrace and open up your love, your joy, your truth, and most especially your heart.”

“Simple is good.”

“Please watch out for each other and love and forgive everybody. It’s a good life, enjoy it.”

Life is meant to be fun, and joyous, and fulfilling.”

“If you can’t beat them, join them.”

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“Watch out for the icy patch.”

“I know that it’s easier to portray a world that’s filled with cynicism and anger, where problems are solved with violence. What’s a whole lot tougher is to offer alternatives, to present other ways conflicts can be resolved, and to show that you can have a positive impact on your world. To do that, you have to put yourself out on a limb, take chances, and run the risk of being called a do-gooder.”

“Always be yourself. Never take yourself to seriously. And beware of advice from experts, pigs, and members of Parliament.”

“I believe that we form our own lives, that we create our own reality, and that everything works out for the best.”

“Do the jobs you like least first. It makes each successive job easier.”

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“Follow your enthusiasm. It’s something I’ve always believed in. Find those parts of your life you enjoy the most. Do what you enjoy doing.”

“We see with our eyes. We know with our hearts. Outside . . . Inside.”

“Do everything at 100 percent of its potential and never accept second best.”

“No time is wasted time.”

“I think if you study — if you learn too much of what others have done, you may tend to take the same direction as everybody else.”