How to Stop Time: Favourite Quotes

How to Stop TimeFavorite Quotes

Every so often I find a book that is packed full of inspiring quotes, and this is one of them. Any book that explores time in relation to how we live life is obviously going to have memorable thoughts, especially if they are from the mind of a writer like Matt Haig. I underlined a bunch of quotes in this book that really made an impression on me, and I’ve compiled them below.

If you fancy, read my full review of the book here: How to Stop Time – Matt Haig


“History isn’t something you need to bring to life. History already is alive. We are history.”

Page 17

“…all we can ever be is faithful to our memories of reality, rather than the reality itself.”

Page 24

“…the thing that defines a human being is being a human.”

Page 46

“The key to happiness wasn’t being yourself, because what did that even mean? Everyone had many selves. No. The key to happiness is finding the lie that suits you best.”

Page 56

“All you can do with the past is carry it around, feeling its weight slowly increase, praying it never crushes you completely.”

Page 61

“Music simply uncovers what is there, makes you feel emotions that you didn’t necessarily know you had inside you, and runs around waking them all up.”

Page 99

“It is strange how close the past is, even when you imagine it to be so far away. Strange how it can just jump out of a sentence and hit you. Strange how every object or word can house a ghost.”

Page 180

“…sometimes you can read an entire person in a single moment. The way you can study a grain of sand and understand the universe. Love at first sight might or might not be a thing, but love in a single moment is.”

Page 239

“You spend so much time waiting for something – a person, a feeling, a piece of information – that you can’t quite absorb it when it is in front of you.”

Page 263-4

“They [people you love] live in your mind, the way they always lived inside you. You keep their light alive.”

Page 291

“You sometimes have to look at what you know is there and discover the things right in front of you.”

Page 299

“All you know is the moment you are in.”

Page 299

“That is the whole thing with the future. You don’t know. At some point you have to accept that you don’t know. You have to stop flicking ahead and just concentrate on the page you are on.”

Page 319

“…the way you stop time is by stopping being ruled by it.”

Page 325

This book was an adventure in time for me, and these are quotes I’ll revisit now and then. I hope anyone reading the book finds as much fun and inspiration in it as I did.

Read my other posts in my ‘Favourite Quotes’ series:

A Little Life: Favourite Quotes






  1. How did you manage to record all those quotes? Usually, if I really like something I’ve read, I end up taking a picture of it on my phone – then I end up with dozens of random book pages in my camera roll! 😛


    • Whenever I read a book, I have a pencil next to me. If I come across a good quote I’ll underline it in pencil then circle the page number. That way when I return to the book to record the quotes, I just look for the circled page numbers indicating a quote. Then I just write it in my quote book. It’s worked well for me! Maybe try it out 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • It doesn’t happen with every book, but some I just know will have some gems in it. If you don’t like writing in them, then maybe when you read the quote write it in a notebook instead of taking a photo? It’s just finding what works for you, I got into the habit from studying books at uni.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I like that idea! I’m currently doing English at uni, and when I have to write down critical quotes / book quotes I usually scribble them down in a pad or type them up straight away.


  2. I loved this book and I highlighted so many passages also. Mine were different, but I really loved yours too. I’m going to have to go back and re-read this one – it’s worthwhile!!! For me, this one tied with Beartown for the ‘most passages highlighted’ record.


    • That’s what I love about books and highlighting quotes! We chose different ones, so we both got something good out of it, but unique to our reading experience 😊 really glad you enjoyed the book!


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