REFLECT UPON THIS: Don’t Trip On Your Way To Greatness! @RRBC_Org @RRBC_RWISA @Tweets4RWISA @4WillsPub @4WP11 @nonniejules @JohnJFioravanti #Quotes

One of my favorite authors has been on a bit of a writing-hiatus lately, but fortunately for those of us who have been inspired by his writing, Author, John J. Fioravanti, has a new release coming out this year!  His first book of quotes, REFLECTIONS: INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES & INTERPRETATIONS, is the Grand Prize Winner of the 2020 RWISA SUPREME BOOK OF THE YEAR Award, so that means it is an excellent read!  I’ve no doubt, REFLECTIONS II will follow closely in its footsteps.

Because I love and live by profound quotes, I was honored to find that in John’s first REFLECTIONS, he reflected upon a couple of my personal quotes.  As I was reading through the book again the other day, one of his reflections resonated with me so loudly, that I just had to share it with you here. 

Here is Reflection # 31: 


“Trials and tribulations are but tiny roadblocks to a greater sense of who you are. They may delay your journey a bit, but they (if you don’t make them so), aren’t big enough to keep you from realizing the true greatness that resides within you.” 

~ Nonnie Jules

I have had the privilege of serving on the Governing Board of the Rave Reviews Book Club for several years. Although I am a senior member of this Board in age, I learned each day from Nonnie Jules who has become my friend and mentor. It should be no surprise that I often draw on her substantial collection of original quotes at Books By Nonnie.  (The quotes section of Books By Nonnie is unavailable at this time, as Nonnie is preparing for the release of her long-awaited collection of personal quotes).

I know from my own life experience and studies that the quest for understanding exactly who we are is universal. As a child and young teen, the question of “Who am I?” had the obvious answer. Leaving childhood behind, we find ourselves clothed with many assertions from family, friends and schoolmates about the kind of person we are perceived to be. Sometimes the descriptions are complimentary and other times, not. If I had a dollar for every time I heard the statement, “Nobody understands me”, I’d be a very rich man. It’s a given that there’s probably no one, except a few, or one very close friend, who can really understand us some of the time. This begs the question whether I understand myself.

In this quote, Jules warns us that life’s difficulties can serve as minor roadblocks to self-understanding. In the sense that these trials are distractions in our quest for clarity, I totally agree. Any situation that brings us physical, emotional or mental pain or stress will deflect our attention from the process of self-assessment and understanding. These trials will happen; there’s no way to avoid them, so the question becomes how we will deal with these challenges.

We cannot control the curves that life throws at us. We can approach routine bumps in the road as major catastrophes by blowing them way out of proportion, and giving them life and unwarranted power. Alternatively, we can approach them with a healthy perspective, maintain our focus, and dispatch these issues as successfully as possible. When we look at a challenge confronting us, and hold it up to the canvas of our entire life, we gain perspective; we see it for the bump in the road that it is. Having established an accurate perspective, it is much easier to focus our effort and energy to deal with the challenge quickly and effectively.

The last part of the quote that resonated deeply within me is this, “… the true greatness that resides within you.”  How many of us reach adulthood with this realization? I did not. I never saw myself as great at anything – which is not to say that I lived my adult life putting myself down. Not at all, but greatness? Within me? After serious thought, I realized that Jules is on target. I may not be great at anything in particular, but I am a unique person and I like myself. The fact that I’m dedicated to helping others, and growing as a person, denotes a sense of greatness within.

How do you grow as a person? I could talk about introspection, self-questioning, self-assessment and all the other aspects of this process, but I’d rather focus on the one that my mentor emphasizes daily – with regard to both herself and others – honesty. Do I make up excuses for my flaws or failures, or do I accept what is, and own it? There’s an old expression, a leopard can’t change its spots, that applies here. The cartoon character, Popeye, exclaimed it in every episode, “I am what I am, and that’s all that I am!” When I arrive at this point, I can choose to be complacent and not bother to do the work to improve, or I can dedicate my energies to becoming the best leopard, sailor, writer or person that I can become. The courage to choose that dedicated way of life is the lamp that shines on our inner greatness.


Reflections by John Fioravanti


What do YOU think?

Does this question engage you or take you out of your comfort zone? Does it put you on the spot? REFLECTIONS is award-winning author and former educator John Fioravanti’s answer.

Offering his interpretations of fifty quotes by contemporary and ancient thinkers alike, John dives deep below the surface of words and explores the deeper meanings that shape his view of the world.

Deeply personal and presented in a self-effacing manner, these self-aware reflections will encourage you to dig deep within yourself and to discover more about the underlying truths that guide you.

Without trumpets or fanfare of any kind, John Fioravanti aspires to inspire you!

About the Author…

John F.

To learn more about John, please visit his RRBC Author Page!

Twitter:  @JohnJFioravanti

As a very special treat, please visit FIORA BOOKS BY JOHN FIORAVANTI to sample ONE free reflection and interpretation from the upcoming REFLECTIONS II!  I assure you, it’s just as amazing and inspiring as this one and will whet your appetite for what’s to come!  (UPDATE:  At the time of this posting, John’s post was not yet LIVE.  Please be sure to check back so that you don’t miss the treat that awaits you on his blog today!)

Thank you for dropping by to support John’s upcoming release.  Please be sure to snag a copy of the original REFLECTIONS, on Amazon now for only $2.99 and as a FREE read on Kindle Unlimited!

I’d also like to ask that you leave John a comment below and LIKE the post before leaving for your chance to win a $5 Amazon Gift Card!  It would be great if you’d also tweet and Share the page to your social media platforms!

Until next time…


  1. Your book is on my kindle, John! After reading your post and all the great comments, must move REFLECTIONS II way up on my kindle. KUDOS!

  2. John, sometimes so-called “inspirational quotes” fall flat, but yours are truly inspirational! Thanks for keeping us moving forward!

    • Thanks, Wanda, I so appreciate your kind words and support!

  3. Sometimes you read a book, read it again, reflect upon it, and the third time you reach for it, realize that it has become a resource. Congratulations, John, for creating a resource for self-reflection. Best wishes!

  4. I read John’s book, Reflections, and enjoyed it very much. I remember your quotes in that book and John’s interpretations and comments about them. I’m glad to know there is a second book on the way.

    • Thanks for stopping by and supporting me with your kind words, Robbie! Book II is in edits as we speak.

  5. Hi John,
    I can so identify with what you’re saying: I remember very well my dad, my mom, my two grandmothers telling me to never forget where I came from and to always keep both feet on the ground. At the age of sixteen, I soon learned about choices and not following the crowds. I stuck out big time!
    Honesty is for me a core value. Being honest with myself means seeing myself the way I really am and not how others perceive me. I am still getting to know myself. I reflect, I dig deep within with the spoon of honesty and I face things that I don’t like about me. Only through the discovery of who we really are, are we able to transform into respecting and loving human beings who can encourage others without thinking about what’s in it for me. That’s my opinion.
    I have learned that life is a learning process that starts taking place after I make a commitment to take responsibility for my choices. And it never ends because learning is a full-time commitment that we live out every day of our lives if we choose to walk the road less traveled by.
    I enjoyed reading your post on Nonnie’s blog. It made me think about my own journey, and it caused me to reflect.
    Shalom aleichem

  6. When I read John’s first book about his teaching years, I started following his writings. He is one of those authors whose books I grab as quickly as they come off the burner. His writing style is so down-to-earth, it speaks to me.
    I congratulate you, John, and I look forward to Book 2 of Reflections. Thank you, Nonnie, for profiling him today.

  7. Reblogged this on PTL Perrin Writes… and commented:
    John Fioravanti is a superb author and a man whose reflections on his favorite quotes are inspiring and deeply encouraging. I’m sharing this post from my friend Nonnie’s blog because I know you’ll love it as much as I do.

    • Thanks so much for the reblog, Patty! Everyone needs to experience John F’s writing!

    • Thanks for sharing this post, Patty!

  8. Hi, Nonnie! I’m currently reading the second book in John’s Genesis Saga and his writing is superb! I have the first Reflections on my Kindle, and, after reading this, it’s jumping to the top of my TBR list. John, thank you for writing! You have the gift of encouragement, and you share your gift with your readers beautifully. I’d also be honored to help promote your book.

    • Thank you so much for your kind comments, Patty! I’m grateful for your support!

    • Hi, Patty! I agree with you, John F’s writing is superb! (Actually, two of my most favorite “author Johns” are both superb writers, so if you haven’t checked out the writing of John Podlaski, you definitely should!)

      John F. is working on making some changes to the Genesis series, so, maybe you’ll go back and check those out after the re-do!

      John F. has this amazing talent of inspiring people without even knowing that he’s doing it. You sat in on the most recent episode of BUY THE BOOK, and if you saw what I saw, you noticed that his audience was enthralled – with every word, it’s like we were mesmerized. He’s definitely got that “thing” that many of us don’t have.

      Thanks for dropping by with your support of John today, Patty, and thanks so much for offering to support his book when we get closer to the roll out!

  9. Shirley Harris-Slaughter

    I was going through my tweets and found this post. I have Reflections and this post really brought it back to my attention. John, I remember Nonnie’s quotes and yours; sometimes you borrowed NJs but they always seem to resonate with me.

    I also see that you had a birthday. HAPPY BELATED BELATED BIRTHDAY!

    Thanks Nonnie for always lifting the members up. It hasn’t gone unnoticed.

    • Thanks a bunch, Shirley!

    • Shirley, thanks for dropping by with your support of John. His reflections are unforgettable for sure!

      Thanks also for your kind words of encouragement for me. I definitely need them and I so appreciate them. 🙂

  10. Great words of wisdom, John! I repeatedly tell myself that I am a work of heart. I am keenly aware of my flaws, and in the past, they have been the ball-and-chain that have prevented me from flourishing, but I have spent this past year on a journey of self-discovery and growth.I have been working on healing myself mentally, emotionally, and physically. I no longer see my flaws as blockades to my greatness. I am great BECAUSE I am flawed and still rise every day to share love and happiness with others (and with myself, which has been the hard part for me for so long). Your words today helped reinforce the path I have chosen, so thank you.

    If you are still looking for hosts to promote your new book, you can count on me, John! Thanks for hosting, Nonnie! 🙂

    • Thanks, Yvette! I see we are fellow travellers on the same path. I appreciate your offer of support!

    • Yvette, like you, I am keenly aware of my flaws and I work daily to improve upon them. Only the strong can admit when they are wrong and then work to right that wrong. I’m so happy that John’s words today helped to reinforce the path you’re on. I’m sure he does that for a lot of us.

      Thanks for supporting John today, and thanks for the offer of hosting his upcoming release!

  11. roxburkey

    Nonnie, what a delight to receive notice of this in my email this morning. A very nice presentation, thank you for hosting.

    John, your words within this volume are inspiring and reflective. I am quite honored to have joined this club and met some remarkable offers. You however are decidedly a writing who can lift a reader to heights not previously realized. I want to thank you for creating this book which I can go to time and again and reflect upon using your guides. Take care.

    • Thank you for these kind words, Rox. I’m pleased that you find my personal reflections helpful. I appreciate your support!

    • Rox, John sent signed copies of this REFLECTIONS to every member in my house and each of us has enjoyed going back to the read, to even discuss some of the reflections, time and time again. I was pleased that my daughters enjoyed the read, and my husband, who isn’t a huge book reader, cherishes his copy!

      We’re also glad you joined RRBC! It is an amazing community, unlike any other, and we’re blessed to be able to count you as one of our RRBC family members!

  12. John, your interpretations are nothing short of genius. The gift that you have to inspire others with your words is a treasure. Not many are blessed with that gift so remember to always choose your words wisely. Somewhere, someone is hanging on to every syllable!

    Enjoy the spotlight!

    • Thanks for your unflagging support, Nonnie! I appreciate your kind words and I know you mean them. I am humbled and elated with the RWISA 2020 award! Looking forward to getting REFLECTIONS II out the door!

      • REFLECTIONS II is well on its way to getting “out the door!” Watch out world! The voice of inspiration is on the loose again! Yayyyyyyy!


  1. REFLECT UPON THIS: INDIFFERENCE IS THE ENEMY! @RRBC_Org;@RRBC_RWISA;@Tweets4RWISA;@JohnJFioravanti;@nonniejules;@4WillsPub;@4WP11 #Quotes #RRBC #RWISA

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