Get inspired by these quotes by Maya Angelou to see the good in all things with this late legendary poet as your thoughtful guide.
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What are the benefits of reading these Maya Angelou quotes?
Maya Angelou (April 4, 1928–May 28, 2014) was a celebrated author, influential poet, dancer, actress, singer, and activist.
Maya received over 50 honorary degrees and is celebrated for her series of 7 autobiographies, which focus on her childhood and adult experiences.
Maya Angelou’s life represented:
She left behind a lifetime of wisdom that will be cherished for many years to come.
Here are some of our favorite Maya Angelou quotes!
Her words are a mix of straight talk and poetry, and her messages transcend race and generations.
You’ll find quotes on life, love, happiness, courage, family, friendship, education, and much more.
These quotes will not only change your perspective on some of these topics, but they will also help you better understand the important historical figure that is Maya Angelou.
Remember to read our selection of quotes by Alan Watts that will open your mind.
If you want more motivational quotes, check out our motivational quotes category page.
Maya Angelou Quotes About Essential Life Truths
1. “Nothing will work unless you do.” – Maya Angelou
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2. “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.” – Maya Angelou
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3. “All great achievements require time.” – Maya Angelou
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4. “If you have only one smile in you give it to the people you love.” – Maya Angelou
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5. “Love is like a virus. It can happen to anybody at any time.” – Maya Angelou
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6. “I believe that every person is born with talent.” – Maya Angelou
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7. “At 50, I began to know who I was. It was like waking up to myself.” – Maya Angelou
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8. “We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.” – Maya Angelou
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9. “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” – Maya Angelou
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10. “I know for sure that loves saves me and that it is here to save us all.” – Maya Angelou
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Inspirational Maya Angelou Quotes About Hope
11. “While I know myself as a creation of God, I am also obligated to realize and remember that everyone else and everything else is also God’s creation.” – Maya Angelou
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12. “Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” – Maya Angelou
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13. “Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.” – Maya Angelou
Uplifting Maya Angelou Quotes About Loving others
14. “My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done and try to love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return.” – Maya Angelou
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15. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
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16. “You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.” – Maya Angelou
17. “One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency.” – Maya Angelou
18. “A wise woman wishes to be no one’s enemy; a wise woman refuses to be anyone’s victim.” – Maya Angelou
19. “Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning.” – Maya Angelou
20. My life has been one great big joke, a dance that’s walked, a song that’s spoke, I laugh so hard I almost choke when I think about myself.” – Maya Angelou
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Maya Angelou quotes about love and greatness
21. “You can’t forgive without loving. And I don’t mean sentimentality. I don’t mean mush. I mean having enough courage to stand up and say, ‘I forgive. I’m finished with it.”‘ – Maya Angelou
22. “History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.” – Maya Angelou
23. “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.” – Maya Angelou
24. “Whatever you want to do, if you want to be great at it, you have to love it and be able to make sacrifices for it.” – Maya Angelou
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25. “It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody.” – Maya Angelou
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Heart Warming Maya Angelou Quotes
26. “If you are always trying to be normal you will never know how amazing you can be.” ― Maya Angelou
27. “You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I’ll rise!” ― Maya Angelou
28. “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” ― Maya Angelou
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29. “Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” ― Maya Angelou
30. “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” ― Maya Angelou
31. “If you are going down a road and don’t like what’s in front of you, and look behind you and don’t like what you see, get off the road. Create a new path!” ― Maya Angelou
32. “Hope and fear cannot occupy the same space. Invite one to stay.” ― Maya Angelou
33. “Open your eyes to the beauty around you, open your mind to the wonders of life, open your heart to those who love you, and always be true to yourself.” ― Maya Angelou
34. “Its not where your dreams take you, its where you take your dreams.” ― Maya Angelou
35. “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” ― Maya Angelou
Did You Enjoy These Maya Angelou Quotes?
Though Maya Angelou died in 2014, her legacy still lives.
We will always remember her not only for her poetry and storytelling but also for her work as an educator, civil rights activist, actress, and filmmaker.
Maya overcame sexual abuse, racism, poverty, violence, and more to become an award-winning author and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Hopefully, these Maya Angelou quotes have inspired you to love your life and overcome any obstacles that may come your way.
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