We all have favorite quotes that touch a special note with us. Ones that garner emotions, ones that bolster motivation, and ones that stimulate inspiration. Ones that evoke something in us that we have been previously unable to put into words.
When you come across that quote, those words to live by, that sentence that sums up your purpose, put it somewhere where it can’t be missed, and where it is a constant reminder of the motivator it will be in your life. With that being said, here are 10 of the quotes that have had a profound impact on my life and why.
Favorite Quotes for Motivation and Inspiration
1. “Character is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking.” – J.C. Watts
While this may seem to speak for itself, they really is words to live by. We can all do the right things when everyone is watching, that is simple. However, it is in those quiet moments, when there is no one there to observe us, that our choices mean the most and show our true character.
2. “There is no substitute for hard work.” – Thomas Edison
Being someone who was raised with a strong work ethic, this quote has always stuck with me. Too many people are looking for the easy way out, to move ahead without putting in the time and effort. The fact of the matter is that if there is something you truly want, you have to work hard for it. The success is that much sweeter for it.
3. “If you don’t like something, change it. If you cannot change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.” – Maya Angelou
I love this quote by Maya Angelou, as it points out the bad habit of people being problem vs solution focused. People are more willing to complain about something with no idea how to fix it, vs giving everything they have to find a solution. She concludes the quote with the reality that there will be things outside of our control. These things, we must change our attitude and work towards acceptance, and away from negativity.
Favorite Quotes for Motivation and Inspiration
4. “Well done is better than well said.” – Benjamin Franklin
So simple, yet so true. Our actions speak far louder than our words. Don’t spend your life talking about what you will, or what you want to accomplish, do it! Words become meaningless when people hear them over and over again. However, actions speak for themselves.
5. “Don’t go around saying the world owes you something. The World owes you nothing. It was here first.” – Mark Twain
I love this quote by Mark Twain, as it was so ahead of its time. It addresses the idea of entitlement, and those who feel the world owes them something without them having to work hard for it. The world owes us nothing. It existed before us, and will exist after us. If we want to make a mark on it, we had better work pretty hard.
Mark Twain again! I cannot help it, the man had some gems. He is correct again, when he points out that the dictionary is the only place where success comes before work. As we are well aware, success comes AFTER hard work in every other aspect of life.
Favorite Quotes for Motivation and Inspiration
7. “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” – Thomas Edison
What a powerful thought. It makes you wonder how close you may have been to success each time you decided to give up and stop. Were you just short of your final goal? This quote reminds me to keep going, no matter how dark things might seem, or how impossible. Success may very likely be just around the corner if we are willing to push just a little bit further and a little bit harder.
8. “I am not what happened to me. I am what I choose to become.” – Carl Jung
As a Psychologist, this one rings true to me in a deep way. It speaks to living in the present, and being willing to work towards our goals in the future. Many of us has difficult pasts, but we do not have to let them define us. In fact, we can be defiant of it, and achieve great success despite it. We are the masters of our fate, we are the authors of our story. (More Carl Jung quotes.)
9. “Be a voice, not an echo.” – Unknown
While we need people that are both, the voices and the echoes, the leaders and the followers, we decide which one we choose to be. When I read this, it reminds me that I do not have to blindly follow a course I do not agree with or understand. I can speak up, and I can lead the way. Be a voice people will respect and remember, not an echo they are uncertain they heard.
10. “Do not wish for, what you will not work for.” – Unknown
So simple, but so true. If you want something bad enough, you cannot simply wish it into being. You have to be willing to work hard and make it happen. If you wish for it, work for it, otherwise wishes remain just that.
Perhaps some of these quotes will have the impact on you that they have on me. Perhaps I have explained their meaning, or my understanding of it, that has made it more significant to you. If not, find your own. Inspire yourself, motivate yourself. Find words that evoke a strong reaction in you, and out them somewhere that reminds of them each day. When we surround ourselves with inspiration, we can’t help but be inspired!
More Favorite Quotes for Motivation and Inspiration
11. “This life is what you make it. No matter what, you’re going to mess up sometimes, it’s a universal truth. But the good part is you get to decide how you’re going to mess it up. Girls will be your friends – they’ll act like it anyway. But just remember, some come, some go. The ones that stay with you through everything – they’re your true best friends. Don’t let go of them. Also remember, sisters make the best friends in the world. As for lovers, well, they’ll come and go too. And baby, I hate to say it, most of them – actually pretty much all of them are going to break your heart, but you can’t give up because if you give up, you’ll never find your soulmate. You’ll never find that half who makes you whole and that goes for everything. Just because you fail once, doesn’t mean you’re gonna fail at everything. Keep trying, hold on, and always, always, always believe in yourself, because if you don’t, then who will, sweetie? So keep your head high, keep your chin up, and most importantly, keep smiling, because life’s a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about.”― Marilyn Monroe
12. “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”― Marianne Williamson
13. “When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”― John Lennon
14. “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”― Theodore Roosevelt
15. “The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”― Randy Pausch
16. “Every day, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.”― Dalai Lama XIV
17. “Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”― Rob Siltanen
18. “Do one thing every day that scares you.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
19. “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” – Kurt Vonnegut
20. “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” – Maya Angelou
Other Favorite Quotes for Motivation and Inspiration
21. “The unexamined life is not worth living.” – Socrates
22. “Instead of worrying about what you cannot control, shift your energy to what you can create.” – Roy T. Bennett
23. “It is good to love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is well done.” – Vincent Van Gogh
24. “Start each day with a positive thought and a grateful heart.” – Roy T. Bennett
25. “A day wasted on others is not wasted on one’s self.” – Charles Dickens
26. “Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.” – Wayne W. Dyer
27. “First say to yourself what you would be, and then do what you have to do.” – Epictetus
March 15, 2021 6:00 AM EST