R. A. Salvatore
You can win a million battles but you can only lose one.
Is yours an honest lament?...Most are not, you know. Most self-imposed burdens are founded on misperceptions. We - at least we of sincere character - always judge ourselves by stricter standards than we expect others to abide by. It is a curse, I suppose, or a blessing, depending on how one views it... Take it as a blessing, my friend, an inner calling that forces you to strive to unattainable heights.
There is a wide world out there, my friend, full of pain, but filled with joy as well. The former keeps you on the path of growth, and the latter makes the journey tolerable.
Guilt resembles a sword with two edges. On the one hand, it cuts for Justice, imposing practical morality upon those who fear it. But there is another side to that weighted emotion. Conscience does not always adhere to rational judgment. Guilt is always a self-imposed burden, but it is not always rightly imposed.
The meekest of animals will fight bravely when it is backed against a wall, for it has nothing left to lose. A poor man is more deadly than a rich man because he puts less value on his own life.
Loss of empathy might well be the most enduring and deep-cutting scar of all, the silent blade of an unseen enemy, tearing at our hearts and stealing more than our strength.
To any intelligent being, there is no emotion more important than hope. Individually or collectively, we must hope that the future will be better than the past, that our offspring, and theirs after them, will be a bit closer to an ideal society, whatever our perception of that might be... It is at those times when we feel we are contributing to that ultimate end... we feel true elation.
It is better, I think, to grab at the stars than to sit flustered because you know you cannot reach them... At least he who reaches will get a good stretch, a good view, and perhaps even a low-hanging apple for his efforts.