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2023 Quotes to Live & Love By

look pain in the eye and turn it into something better

Sometimes, one word, one sentence, one inspirational thought can change your life. Welcome to my work in progress—2023 Quotes to Live By. In this post I’ll be sharing the phrases that have helped uplift, soothe, encourage and inspire me. I’ll be adding more as they come to mind. Scroll to the bottom for the most recent entries.

As I share in Bounce: Overcoming Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy  (and the chapter entitled Journal Your Way to Joy:

In 2018, while tackling a mammoth writing project, I talked myself into a bit of a funk. I knew that what I really needed were some positive reminders of my intentions and a way to encourage perseverance.

I recalled a strategy Anne Gracie, a successful romance author, once shared in a newsletter, “I love my writing journal. It’s my partner in writing, there for me whenever I need it, my confidant and my supporter and my record of where I’ve been.” 

Prior to this, I had noticed anxiety building—as it always does when I don’t have a special book in which to purge and reshape my thoughts.

Instead of saying “I quit” and “I am so over this,” and retelling the story that allowed for failure, I went online and purchased a beautiful unlined leather-bound sketchbook.

With my gold pen, I wrote empowering and encouraging quotes from other authors who have also struggled to maintain a prosperous mindset while writing an epic book.

Top of my list was Jessie Burton’s empowering words, “Always picture succeeding, never let it fade. Always picture success, no matter how badly things seem to be going in the moment.”

These words reminded me that I was picturing failure. I was telling myself messages of failure. I was feeling like a failure.

Jesse Burton, the author of The Muse and The Miniaturist, is very inspiring to me because she is so honest about her own battles with mental health—including anxiety.

“In February, I was publicly honest about how difficult it had been to handle, process and assimilate in real time some of the changes in my life. Namely, the strange and wondrous effects of The Miniaturist. I wrote about anxiety, my first tentative foray into putting that mental morass into words,” she wrote in one of her newsletters.

As Burton highlights, blogging and sharing your thoughts with your fans is another form of cathartic journaling.

I hope you find something helpful to you

“Nothing brings me more happiness than trying to help the most vulnerable people in society. It is a goal and an essential part of my life—a kind of destiny.”

~ The people’s queen, Diana

The people’s queen—Diana, queen of hearts…I often wonder how different the world would be if Diana hadn’t had a ‘fated’ car crash. Did she predict her death?

Bombshell revelations state that Diana called her legal adviser Victor Mischon in 1995 for a very secretive meeting in which she said that something tragic would take place — “it could be a car crash or anything, and it’s all being planned.”

The shocking revelations are said to have come from a very “reliable source,” whom Diana had not disclosed during the meeting, who had informed her that by April 1996, efforts would be made to “get rid of her”.

For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.

Luke 8:17

oh yes, I was thinking “gosh NZ how far you’ve fallen” but now I’m reminded… It’s up to all of us to reverse the harm caused by lies, corruption and greed so we can ALL experience heaven on earth… regardless of race, sex, belief

So many painful things have come to light following my mother’s sudden death last year. I flew home to the Bay of Islands the day after the funeral and immediately channelled my sorrow into making art. In fact, the day I learned of her death, before I flew to her funeral, I also created a special piece—beeswax infused with frankincense. I share more on this blog>> The quote below reminds me to keep showing up for love.


“Let life be beautiful like summer flowers,” Vincent van Gogh

The painting accompanying the quote above is Let It Go.

420 mm x 297 mm

acrylic on paper

I created this piece with fun visitors who came for a spontaneous playdate, Ella (6 yrs) and her grandmother. Ella introduced me to new music The Fun Squad… I loved the song “Never Grow Up” and “Let it Go.” I introduced Ella to dancing and singing while you paint and reintroduced her to finger painting.

Ella has a special relationship with her grandmother, which I did with mine, who taught me how to paint and it was a nice trip down memory lane, as I watched the two of them co-create together. This special piece oozes love, fun and play—just the high vibes to pop on your walls. View in my gallery here>>

St John The Baptist by Leonardo da Vinci and words from a copy of the The Holy Bible, which my father had owned.

“He that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.”

St John he that doeth truth cometh to the light

“Here’s the thing about people with good hearts:

They give you excuses when you don’t explain yourself.

They accept the apologies you don’t give.

They see the best in you.

They always lift you up, even if that means putting their own priorities aside.

They will never be too “busy” for you.

They make time, even when you don’t.

And you wonder why they’re the most sensitive people, the most caring people, why they are willing to give so much of themselves with no expectation in return.

You wonder why their existence is not so essential to your well-being. It’s because they don’t make you work hard for the attention they give you. They accept the love they think they deserve

– and you accepted the love you think you’re entitled to.

Don’t take them for granted.

Fear the day when a good heart gives up on you.

Our skies don’t become grey out of nowhere, our sunshine does not allow the darkness to take over for no reason.

A heart does not turn cold unless it’s been treated with coldness for a while”

Najwa Zebian

Don't think about art just get it done warhol
You are exhausted from living in survival mode
Leonardo quote Every obstacle yields to a resolve
to protect your energy

surrender into joy, gratitude and sacred passion

surrender into joy, gratitude and sacred passion

One who damages the character of another damages his own.

“One who damages the character of another damages his own.”

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”

Soren Kierkegaard – The Journals of Søren Kierkegaard, 1844.

my father taught me, “what is a man, if he does not tell the truth” Cassandra Gaisford

‘Put your feelings in there. Don’t just paint some shit like you don’t care.’ ~ Joan Mitchell

‘When the past exists, the future may flourish.’~ Peter Ackroyd

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is also known as the “Golden Rule”. The actual quote from the Bible is from Luke 6:31, “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” Simply put, this phrase means to treat others the way we want them to treat us.




The Art of Success: Be Inspired by Leonardo da Vinci


12 years ago my partner and I celebrated his birthday in Sicily, this photo was taken not far from Palermo. It was the most magical time. May and off season so lovely and empty of the normal crowds. I love this affirmation that I added to the photo “success is your ticket to a better place.” HAPPY BIRTHDAY LORENZO XXXX

In an interview iconic actress Helen Mirren said, “If there were advice for her younger self, it’d be to say “Fuck off” more and stop being so “bloody polite.”

“Creativity has the power to look pain in the eye and to decide to turn it into something better.”

As May drew to a close, after a fun catch up with my soul sisters I released a whole bunch of energy in my latest abstract, True Colours, oil in canvas. I absolutely love the freedom of creating the painting and the self-empowerment that is embodied in it’s creation. it makes a pivot moment in my life, the turning of a new leaf.

“I still go to the journals and read the research—but it’s just not good. Narcissists don’t respond to therapy…which means the focus has to be on you and what makes you feel good.” ~ Dr. Phil

I’ve learned more about the toxic side of selfishness recently in the wake of my mother’s death last year, and the deceit and greed by my family regarding the will and my mother’s assets, but similarly, I have learned the hard way, that being too kind can come at a punishing toll when those close to you exploit your good nature. I’m getting better at finding the balance, and feel freer…a background and qualifications in counselling and psychology and art therapy has paid dividends.

Ali magic testimonial

Feedback from appreciative others is always a powerful affirmation! During three beautiful days of art and magic making, I helped women rediscover their passion, creativity and courage. And they in turn help me during turbulent times in my personal life.

Posted in: Blog

2023 Quotes to Live & Love By

I am an artist, storyteller, intuitive guide, mentor and Reiki master. All my creations are infused with positive energy , inspiration, and light. I believe in magic and the power of beauty, joy, love, purpose, and creativity to transform your life. My greatest joy is helping your realize your dreams. That makes my soul sing!

P: +64 (0) 21 873 833
E: cassandra@cassandragaisford.com


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