105 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life & Greatness (2020)
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105 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life To Expand Your Understanding

Wisdom, happiness, enlightenment. You need to read these wise sayings ASAP!

85 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life To Expand Your Understanding
Norbert Juma
Published on July 22, 2020 6:30 AM EST
85 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life To Expand Your Understanding

They say that wisdom comes with age, and these wise sayings and wisdom quotes will give you better judgement and a sense of purpose in life.

What is wisdom exactly? Wisdom is defined as, “the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgement.”

85 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life To Expand Your Understanding

If we’re lucky enough to have parents, mentors and advisors, then we have heard plenty of wise sayings and quotes about life.

We also know that you can’t just hear it once.

Life’s wisdom can often miss us because life moves so fast, that we have to practice standing still.

In many cultures and religions across the world, gaining wisdom is the ultimate goal.

Wisdom is seen as the highest form of understanding, which can lead you towards enlightenment.

Something I’ve learned in life is that my favorite quotes and sayings can often become principles to live by.

I hope these wise sayings about life can serve as guidelines for greater happiness, fulfillment, connection, and meaning.

Don’t forget to also read our collection of goal setting quotes that will inspire you to achieve and put you on the path to get there. And these words of wisdom that will get you inspired and uplifted.

Inspiring and wise sayings about life

wise sayings
Wise Sayings

1. “You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” ― Gautama Buddha

Before you pour your love into someone else, fill yourself up first.

wise sayings

2. “Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” ― Rumi

Start with you. Start where you are. Changing the world is an exciting idea. Changing yourself makes it possible.

wise sayings

3. “Man is a mystery. It needs to be unravelled, and if you spend your whole life unravelling it, don’t say that you’ve wasted time. I am studying that mystery because I want to be a human being.” ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Everything you do and have done has gotten you closer to who you really are and who you aspire to be. So in essence, even if you disagree with what you have done, it was never time wasted.

wise sayings

4. “A man is not called wise because he talks and talks again; but if he is peaceful, loving and fearless then he is in truth called wise.” 
― Gautama Buddha

Words only go so far, we must live our message. Our true wisdom is displayed through our actions.

Wise Sayings

5. “Sometimes it’s not enough to know what things mean, sometimes you have to know what things don’t mean.” ― Bob Dylan

Being wrong is just as powerful as being right. Sometimes, it’s even more powerful.

wise sayings

6. “We seldom realize, for example that our most private thoughts and emotions are not actually our own. For we think in terms of languages and images which we did not invent, but which were given to us by our society.” ― Alan Wilson Watts

Let’s be mindful of what we identify with and hold on to. Many times we think, “That’s just who I am, that just what I think…” But the truth is, many things we think and desire are not our own. Since our childhood, we’ve been looking for attention and acceptance and most of the time that came from ‘following directions’. Take some time to think about how you think.

wise sayings

7. “You will not be punished for your anger; you will be punished by your anger.” ― Gautama Buddha

Once you’re angry, the harm is already done.

wise sayings

8. “If others tell us something we make assumptions, and if they don’t tell us something we make assumptions to fulfill our need to know and to replace the need to communicate. Even if we hear something and we don’t understand we make assumptions about what it means and then believe the assumptions. We make all sorts of assumptions because we don’t have the courage to ask questions.” ― Miguel Ruiz

 The only thing worse than making assumptions is to believe them.

wise sayings

9. “I’ve come to believe that all my past failure and frustration were actually laying the foundation for the understandings that have created the new level of living I now enjoy. ”  ― Anthony Robbins

Don’t let your pain stay as pain. Get something from it. Let your pain push you towards growth.

wise sayings

10. “The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wisdom doesn’t have to be bleak. Let your understanding help you recognize the unexplainable.

wise sayings

11. “Just as a snake sheds its skin, we must shed our past over and over again.”  ― Gautama Buddha

Growing isn’t something that happens once. It happens again and again, and again!

wise sayings

12. “This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple. Your philosophy is simple kindness.”  ― Dalai Lama XIV

Life = Love

Wise Sayings

13. “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” – Abraham Lincoln

14. “Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.” – Denis Waitley

15. “Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way.” – Al Franken

16. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” – Steve Jobs

17. “You get in life what you have the courage to ask for.” – Oprah Winfrey

18. “God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.” – Voltaire

19. “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – George Bernard Shaw

Don’t forget to also read these wise Uncle Iroh quotes celebrating his endless wisdom.

Wise sayings about life and living it to your best

20.  “You can never plan the future by the past.” — Edmund Burke

21. “In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.” — Robert Frost

22. “Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.” – Omar Khayyam

23. “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” – Oscar Wilde

24. “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” – Soren Kierkegaard

25. “You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” – Mae West

26. “Life ought to be a struggle of desire toward adventures whose nobility will fertilize the soul.” – Rebecca West

27. “The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.” – Elbert Hubbard

28. “The greatest day in your life and mine is when we take total responsibility for our attitudes. That’s the day we truly grow up.” – John C. Maxwell

29. “Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.” – Soren Kierkegaard

30.  “Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to it.” – Lou Holtz

Wise sayings about life lessons

31. “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill

32. “Close some doors today. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because they lead you nowhere.”―Paulo Coelho

33. “I am not someone who is ashamed of my past. I’m actually really proud. I know I made a lot of mistakes, but they, in turn, were my life lessons.” – Drew Barrymore

34. “You can’t live your life for other people. You’ve got to do what’s right for you, even if it hurts some people you love.” – The Notebook

35. “Be like a tree and let the dead leaves drop.” ―Rumi

36. “Life is 10 percent what you make it, and 90 percent how you take it.” ―Irving Berlin

37. “No matter how much suffering you went through, you never wanted to let go of those memories.” ― Haruki Murakami

38. “Only the dead have seen the end of war.” ― Plato

39. “People are just about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” – Abraham Lincoln

40. “A wise man learns by the mistakes of others, a fool by his own.” – Latin Proverb

Wise sayings to help us learn

41. “On every thorn, delightful wisdom grows. In every rill a sweet instruction flows.” – Edward Young

42. “It’s not the load that weighs you down, it’s how you carry it.” – C.S. Lewis

43. “The seat of knowledge is in the head, of wisdom, in the heart.” – William Hazlitt

44. “People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.” – Harper Lee

45. “To be successful, you must act big, think big and talk big.” – Unknown

46. “There is more to life than increasing its speed.” – Mahatma Gandhi

47. “Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.” – Albert Einstein

48. “All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.”-  Ralph Waldo Emerson

49. “Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” – Thomas Jefferson

50. “Wise men make more opportunities than they find.” – Francis Bacon

Wise sayings to broaden your thoughts

​51. “In order to be happy oneself, it is necessary to make at least one other person happy.”– Theodor Reik

52. “Everyone in life is gonna hurt you; you just have to figure out which people are worth the pain.” – Erica Baican

53. “A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge.” – Thomas Carlyle

54. “Forgiveness is the final form of love.” – Reinhold Niebuhr

55. “There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still.”– Franklin D. Roosevelt

​56. “No one ever finds life worth living – one has to make it worth living.” – Winston Churchill

57. “Accept responsibility for your life. Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go, no one else.”– Les Brown

​58. “An unexamined life is not worth living.”– Socrates

59. “Life is much more fun if you live it in the spirit of play and collaboration, working with instead of against others.” – Wally Amos

​60. “The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.”– Vince Lombardi

61. “You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you.” – Mary Tyler Moore

62. “Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

63. “People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.” ​– Eleanor Roosevelt

64. “I am not what happened to me; I am what I choose to become.”– C.G. Jung

65. “Things change. And friends leave. Life doesn’t stop for anybody.”– Stephen Chbosky

Wise sayings and quotes to enlighten you

66. “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” – John F. Kennedy

67. “Live life to the fullest, and focus on the positive.” – Matt Cameron

68. “I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan

69. “Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground.” – Theodore Roosevelt

70. “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.” – Henry Ford

71. “Life is a question and how we live it is our answer.” – Gary Keller

72. “Today is life–the only life you are sure of. Make the most of today. Get interested in something. Shake yourself awake. Develop a hobby. Let the winds of enthusiasm sweep through you. Live today with gusto.” – Dale Carnegie

73. “It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.” – Andre Gide

74. “Life takes on meaning when you become motivated, set goals and charge after them in an unstoppable manner.” – Les Brown

75. “Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.” – Jack London

Wise sayings about life that will move you

76. “Singleness of purpose is one of the chief essentials for success in life, no matter what may be one’s aim.” —John D. Rockefeller

77. “Don’t waste your time with explanations, people only hear what they want to hear.” – Paulo Coelho

78. “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” —Mark Twain

79. “Each of us experiences defeats in life. We can transform defeat into victory if we learn from life’s whippings.” – Les Brown

80. “When a thing is done, it’s done. Don’t look back. Look forward to your next objective.” —George C. Marshall

81. “If we manage ego wisely, we get the upside it delivers followed by strong returns.” – Dave Marcum

82. “Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.” —Henry Van Dyke

83. “Be wiser than other people, if you can; but do not tell them so.” – Lord Chesterfield

84. “There are three constants in life…change, choice and principles.” –Stephen Covey

85. “…just because we feel a certain way doesn’t make that feeling a fact. It only means that we feel that way. We must learn to press past our feelings.” – Joyce Meyer

Wise sayings about life to encourage you

86. “The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even heard but must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller

87. “I think of life as a good book. The further you get into it, the more it begins to make sense.”– Harold Kushner

88. “There is no life as complete as the life that is lived by choice.” – Shad Helmstetter

89. “Life isn’t a matter of milestones, but of moments.” – Rose Kennedy

90. “Life is not about how fast you run or how high you climb, but how well you bounce.”– Vivian Komori

91. “Life is short, and truth works far and lives long: let us then speak the truth.” – Arthur Schopenhauer

92. “All teachings are mere references. The true experience is living your own life. Then, even the holiest of words are only words.”– Ming-Dao Deng

93. “Don’t search for the meaning of life. Simply be present for the people you love.” – Maxime Lagacé

94. “Each life is made up of mistakes and learning, waiting and growing, practicing patience, and being persistent.” – Billy Graham

95. “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” – Confucius

More wise sayings about life

96. “Even when you have doubts, take that step. Take chances. Mistakes are never a failure – they can be turned into wisdom.” – Cat Cora

97. “Action may not always bring happiness; but there is no happiness without action.”— Benjamin Disraeli

98. “Wisdom is the power to put our time and our knowledge to the proper use.” – Thomas J. Watson

99. “When we are in love we seem to ourselves quite different from what we were before.”— Blaise Pascal

100. “Think like a man of action and act like a man of thought.” – Henri Bergson

101. “I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse.”– Florence Nightingale

102. “A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can let alone.” – Henry David Thoreau

103. “Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.”– Abraham Lincoln

104. “Since you get more joy out of giving joy to others, you should put a good deal of thought into the happiness that you are able to give.”— Eleanor Roosevelt

105. “Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.”– Richard Branson

Did you learn from these wise sayings?

Words of wisdom from individuals of all different backgrounds can teach us important life lessons. Through the years, great men and women have imprinted their wisdom on us by way of their wise words. And because of them, their contributions have made this world a better place to live in.

Hopefully, these wise sayings will guide you towards greater happiness, fulfillment, connection, and meaning.

Did you enjoy these wise sayings? What other wise sayings about life would you like to share with us? Tell us in the comment section below. We would love to hear all about it.

85 Wise Sayings, Quotes & Phrases About Life To Expand Your Understanding
4 Comments
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4 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Ebrima Barry

    July 7, 2020 at 1:08 PM

    close some doors today. not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because they lead you no where.so this wise advice

  2. Avatar

    Xalvador

    July 9, 2019 at 5:09 AM

    Little minds have little worries.
    Big minds have no time for worries

  3. Avatar

    John

    March 16, 2019 at 1:02 PM

    Excellent! Its quite difficult to get a good collection of quotes on single page.

  4. Avatar

    MWIINGA MAZUBA

    January 15, 2019 at 12:09 AM

    I have learnt big things about been living living wise in this world! So let thise teachings continue been shared to people across the world

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