Is it possible to create a collection of inspiring quotes that you can use as the foundation of your life? Such a task would be incredibly difficult because you would have to sift through hundreds if not thousands of excellent books, just to find some invaluable gems here and there. Certainly, you could also ask hundreds of people about the quotes that they are living their lives by. But how would you condense all these results so that only the best of the best remains? Luckily for you, we’ve already created such a collection. Save your precious time and have a look at the following. It contains some of the most inspirational quotes to live by. These are the quotes that will accompany you through every stage of your life.
If you don’t want to spend weeks unearthing one remarkable quote after another, the following hand-picked selection is for you. It’s the ultimate collection of uplifting, inspiring, and motivating quotes to live by.
“Don’t look for society to give you permission to be yourself.”
One simply cannot have enough of these fantastic quotes to live by.
In the following, you’ll find the remarkable quotes that millions of successful and happy people integrated into their lives. Many of these quotes can be used to form the important foundation upon which you can build a fulfilling and meaningful life.
65 Inspirational Quotes to Live by
While it’s true that there are many encouraging quotes that lift you up, every once in a while, you come across one particular quote that is far more powerful than all the others. These unusual statements do not only stand out from all the others but they also have the potential to become important guides in your life.
Whenever you find such powerful quotes to live by, they will provide important insights you can apply in your own life. Some of these remarkably powerful statements will encourage you to dream big. Others will fuel the pursuit of your dreams. But there are also important quotes that will lift you up when you’re confronted with challenging situations. Even more importantly, many of these brilliant quotes to live by will give you the necessary strength it takes to overcome difficult times.
In short, these are the quotes that will not only encourage you to get back up on your feet when you got knocked down but they will also make you reach for the stars.
Enjoy the following collection of wonderful quotes to live by
1. Dr. Seuss on being who you are
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
Let’s face it, there will always be people who do not approve of who you are and what you do. But do these people really matter? In most cases, these people are not worth your time and attention. Instead, focus on those who accept you for who you are. Those will be the people who will love you not despite all your imperfections and shortcomings but because of them.
2. Albert Einstein on difficulties
“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
Nobody likes to be confronted with difficult times. We all seek to avoid these kinds of unpleasant challenges as best as we can. However, there is much more to the occasional struggle than meets the eye. In many cases, difficult times introduce important opportunities to your life. If you have the courage to see these opportunities for what they are, you can benefit greatly from the occasional struggle. In fact, these opportunities will help you to take something negative and turn it into pure gold.
3. Eleanor Roosevelt on doing what is right
“Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.”
One mysterious aspect about life is that you will be criticized no matter what you do. If you choose to go left, there will be people criticizing you heavily for that decision. At the same time, if you choose to go right, there will be other people screaming and yelling at you for meeting that decision. In the end, there will always be someone that criticizes you, so why even bother? Meet the decision that is right for you and have the courage to pursue what you feel is right.
4. Henry Ford on believing in yourself
“Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re probably right.”
If you believe in yourself, you can accomplish almost anything – as long as you are determined enough to see things through. However, those who do not even believe in their own abilities will quickly become discouraged by initial struggles. As you can see, the way you think can greatly shape your life. If you choose to think positively, the way you perceive life will gradually change for the better. You will become more confident in your abilities and as a result, you will accomplish much more than before.
5. Calvin Coolidge on persistence
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”
Everywhere you go, you’ll find incredibly skilled and talented individuals. They are bright, have amazing ideas, and their abilities are nothing but impressive. However, if those people are not willing to put in a great deal of effort, if they are not willing to be persistent, they will seldom make good use of their potential. Instead, only those who are willing to do whatever it takes will be rewarded greatly. And in most cases, a lack of talent can quickly be overcome by the right determination and persistence.
6. Jimmy Dean on making the best of life
“I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.”
When it comes to living life, most people do nothing but complain about the direction of the wind. They deeply regret that the wind is not blowing in the right direction.
Successful individuals, however, waste not a second with complaining. Instead, they adjust their sails in order to make good use of the opportunity they are given.
What does this inspirational quote to live by seek to teach you? Well, it’s all about showing you how important it is to adapt and to make the best of your situation. You may not always be able to change the circumstances of your life but you can always use what you have been given and make the most of it. Of all the other inspirational quotes to live by, this one is perhaps the most insightful.
7. Mark Twain on small people
“Keep away from people who try to belittle your dreams. Small people always do that, but the really great ones make you feel that you, too, can become great.”
There are always two types of people. The first type will encourage you to pursue your dreams. They will show you what you can do to let these dreams become a reality. The other type will tell you that you’re a dreamer and that you should grow up. They will discourage you from trying. While it’s always more comfortable to play it safe, sometimes you simply have to do what you feel is right. Never allow anyone to discourage you from pursuing your dreams. If you allow others to shape your life, you will always come to regret it.
8. Thomas A. Edison on giving up
“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”
Thomas A. Edison
Always remember that you have already lost when you give up. But if you remain persistent, if you continue to pursue your goals, you still have the chance of winning. Never allow anyone to deprive you of that chance.
9. Charles Swindoll on what life is all about
“Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.”
You may not be able to change what happens to you in life. But you are definitely able to control how you respond to the events of your life. Even further, the way you think about what happens in life greatly affects how you respond to it.
Negativity, setbacks, and difficulties can break you, leaving you devastated on the floor. But if you use these challenging situations to grow a little stronger and wiser, nothing will ever be able to stop you.
If you internalize this philosophy of this beautiful quote to live by, it will no longer matter so much what happens to you in life. All that will matter is how you respond to it and how you are able to turn something negative into something positive.
10. Mark Twain on great disappointments
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover.”
Playing it safe can be quite comfortable. But after many years of living within the confines of your comfort zone, regret about missed opportunities will slowly begin to creep up. No failure and no mistake will ever be as painful as the regret of not having had the courage to explore a wonderful opportunity.
11. Oscar Wilde on being yourself
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
Authenticity emerges from the courage to be who you are. If you always try to be someone else, you will never be able to achieve that level of authenticity and genuineness of someone confident enough to be who they are. Fake people always try to be someone else. Authentic people simply are themselves.
12. Chris Colfer on people that hurt you
“When people hurt you over and over, think of them like sandpaper. They may scratch and hurt you a bit, but in the end, you end up polished and they end up useless.”
This one is a remarkable statement. When compared to all the other inspirational quotes to live by, Chris Colfer’s thoughts can be tremendously helpful when it comes to dealing with toxic people.
13. Socrates on finding yourself
“To find yourself, think for yourself.”
Many people no longer think for themselves. They have grown used to letting someone else do all the thinking. Instead of forming their own opinion, they adapt other people’s opinions. Doing so may be quite comfortable but in the long run, it can be quite helpful. After all, what is a person with no opinion other than an empty shell that is filled with preconceived notions?
14. Buddha on the secret of health
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, or not to anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
What happened in the past cannot be made undone. What is going to happen in the future cannot be influenced. All that you have is the power of the present moment. Don’t allow regret about what happened in the past and worries about the future to diminish the power of the moment. Instead, use the present moment to build a better future.
15. Dodinsky on helping others
“Be there for others, but never leave yourself behind.”
As with almost all things in life, balance is key. If you are too selfish, nothing good will emerge from it. At the same time, if you entirely forget yourself for the sake of other people, you may end up in a situation where you become dependent on other people’s help. For this reason, always seek to help other people but never forget that you can only do so effectively when you are self-sufficient.
16. Richard Nixon on being defeated
“A man is not finished when he is defeated. He is finished when he quits.”
Every once in a while, you will be confronted with a failure. While these situations can be extraordinarily painful, you must not give up. Don’t allow occasional setbacks and failures to stop you from pursuing your dreams. Always remember that failure is not permanent; giving up is.
17. George Bernard Shaw on getting on with life
“The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for circumstances they want, and, if they can’t find them, make them.”
George Bernard Shaw
People who do nothing but wait for the right moment will seldom find themselves in the circumstances they are dreaming of. Only those who are willing to take action will eventually create the right circumstances that help them to propel their lives.
18. Abraham Lincoln on being happy
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
Happiness is a choice. If you choose to feel miserable about yourself, you will never be truly happy. At the same time, if you are willing to be happy no matter what happens to you in your life, you will always maintain a relatively high level of happiness.
19. Confucius on getting back up on your feet
“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”
If you try to avoid failure as much as you can, you will never attain true greatness. Only if you are willing to fail every once in a while you will be able to learn the important lessons that are needed to be successful in life.
20. Oprah Winfrey on the way you look at life
“If you look at what you have in life, you’ll always have more. If you look at what you don’t have in life, you’ll never have enough.”
Being grateful for what you have is the key to happiness. By cultivating happiness, you can remarkably improve the quality of your life. You will no longer feel great pain about not having something because all the beautiful aspect of your life will be in the center of your attention.
21. Leonardo da Vinci on the importance of doing
“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.”
Leonardo da Vinci
Of all the other inspirational quotes to live by, this one should be thoroughly reflected on.
What is knowledge worth if it is not applied to your life? What’s the point of dreaming big if you never take one step after another to see your dreams realized?
22. Helen Keller on closing doors
“When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.”
Realizing that a certain door in your life has been closed and will never open again can be quite discomforting. But instead of standing in front of the door, shouting and complaining that the door has shut, try to move on with your life as quickly as possible. Keep your eyes open for the new opportunities that are introduced to your life. That’s the only way you can turn a difficult situation into something better.
23. Alice Walker on power
“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”
This statement is remarkably true. When compared to the other inspirational quotes to live by, this one should never be forgotten. In many cases, we overestimate other people’s abilities while simultaneously underestimating ourselves.
24. Maya Angelou on the way to measure life
“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.”
Does it really matter whether you are going to live for 80 or 90 years? In most cases, it is far more important what you make of the time you were given. There are people who make no good use of their time on earth, despite living for 100 years or even more. At the same time, there are those who accomplish the greatest things during their lifetime, even if they “only” live for 75 years.
25. Maya Angelou on forgiveness
“It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody.”
If you cannot forgive, you will never be able to move on with your life. Realize that forgiving yourself and others will help you to heal. Holding onto anger will accomplish nothing.
26. Christopher Columbus on crossing the ocean
“You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.”
In many cases, you can only gain something better if you are willing to let go of something. Most people shy away from giving up things they have become accustomed to, even if they are preventing them from making progress in life.
27. Joshua Marine on challenges
“Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”
Joshua J. Marine
If it wasn’t for life’s challenges, there would be no opportunities for growth. We all would stagnate at the same level we’ve always been, without anything challenging us to become better and stronger.
28. J.W. von Goethe on dreaming
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The above is a remarkable statement by the great composer. It surely must be included in a collection of the most inspirational quotes to live by. Without it, every collection would be incomplete.
29. Winston S. Churchill on success
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
Winston S. Churchill
The fruits of your initial successes will eventually subside. Similarly, the pain and discomfort caused by a failure will diminish with time. But if you always have the courage to continue pursuing your dreams, nothing will stop you from seeing these dreams realized. No failure (and no initial rewards) will be able to discourage you (or make you too comfortable) to continue the pursuit of your goals.
30. Henry Ford on dealing with struggle
“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”
Always remember when confronted with difficult times that these situations will eventually help you to become a stronger person. Remind yourself of the fact that struggles and challenges often come with important opportunities that help you to propel your life.
31. Tony Robbins on routines
“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.”
Sometimes, it can be quite helpful to embark on new paths instead of always walking on the same trail. Doing so will help you to explore new opportunities without always arriving at the same destination that you’ve always arrived in.
32. Aristotle on avoiding criticism
“There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.”
Avoiding failure and criticism is quite easy: all you need to do is to do absolutely nothing. That way, you can avoid all these uncomfortable situations. At the same time, however, you will never gain anything.
33. Farrah Gray on building your dreams
“Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.”
It’s sad but true. Of all the other inspirational quotes to live by, this one is particularly difficult to implement in life.
34. Norman Vincent Pelee on changing your thoughts
“Change your thoughts and you change your world.”
Norman Vincent Peale
The way you think does not only shape who you are but it also influences how you perceive the world you are living in. If you see difficult times as punishment, they will always break you. But if you consider these challenges as important lessons in life that help you to grow as a person, you will be able to find meaning in suffering.
35. Henry David Thoreau on living your dreams
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.”
Henry David Thoreau
There’s nothing more to add to this marvelous statement. Obviously, it definitely needs to be included in this list of inspirational quotes to live by.
36. Jamie Paolinetti on indications
“Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless.”
What is it that prevents us from attaining greatness? In most cases, it’s the limitations we impose upon ourselves. When you firmly believe that you cannot accomplish something, you will be less likely to give it a try.
37. Virginia Satir on defining yourself
“We must not allow other people’s limited perceptions to define us.”
Most people you deal with will only get a glimpse of who you truly are. So why allow these people to define who you are?
38. Ralph Waldo Emerson on being yourself
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
It truly is.
Being yourself takes a lot of courage. It will confront you with many challenges and it will certainly not make you popular with everyone. But the possible rewards of being authentic are far greater than trying to adjust yourself to the expectations of the people around you.
39. Mark Twain on going with the current
“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”
History shows us that being part of the majority may not always be the right thing.
40. Maya Angelou on the things you don’t like
“What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.”
Complaining about something you don’t like is a waste of time. If you don’t like it, change it. And if that’s not possible, try to think differently about what you don’t like. There’s always a way to think more positively about the things you cannot change. If you are able to do so, the things you don’t like will no longer be able to drag you down.
41. Les Brown on living your dreams
“Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.”
Who says that it’s going to be easy to pursue your dreams? It takes a lot of courage to do what needs to be done so that you can live your dreams. There will be many setbacks and struggles along the way. But if you do persist, you will be rewarded greatly.
42. George Bernard Shaw on finding yourself
“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”
George Bernard Shaw
Almost every person seeks to give their life a meaning. We all seek for the purpose of our lives. However, many of us struggle greatly to find this purpose. The reason why it is so difficult to do so is because your purpose in life cannot be found. It’s not something someone will hand over to you and it surely is not something you accidentally stumble upon. Instead, finding meaning in your life requires action. Only by creating a purpose for your life, true meaning in your existence can be found.
43. Thomas A. Edison on failure
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Thomas A. Edison
That’s quite an inspiring way to look at failure.
44. Bruce Lee on being yourself
“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.”
If you try to imitate other people, you’ll always end up as the duplicate of something. Similarly, you may not be able to duplicate another personality to the fullest – you will always remain an incomplete copy. Instead of struggling to become like others, have the courage to be yourself.
45. Wayne Gretzky on taking risks
“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
If you give something a try, you may fail. But if you don’t even try, you have already lost.
46. Stephen King on talent
“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.”
As already mentioned earlier, a lack of talent can be overcome with great persistence and determination.
47. Ayn Rand on having the right attitude
“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”
That’s an encouraging mindset, isn’t it?
48. John Lennon on happiness
“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.”
This remarkable quote is always fascinating. How a five-year-old can see through the illusions that many grown-ups are living with is just brilliant.
49. Theodore Roosevelt on having faith in yourself
“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.”
If you combine belief in yourself with action, almost everything can be accomplished.
50. Confucius on making progress in life
“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”
Similarly, to reach a destination far away, you must take one tiny little step after another. Even more so, to arrive where you intend to go, you absolutely have to take the first step. If you cannot motivate yourself to take this first step, you will never be able to embark on this journey.
51. Napoleon Hill on achieving what you believe in
“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.”
52. Roger Babson on things that go wrong
“If things go wrong, don’t go with them.”
53. Vincent van Gogh on overcoming your inner critic
“If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.”
Vincent van Gogh
54. Albert Einstein on making mistakes
“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”
55. Kurt Cobain on trying to be someone else
“Wanting to be someone else is a waste of who you are.”
56. Benjamin Franklin on false friends
“A false friend and a shadow attend only while the sun shines.”
57. Pablo Picasso on being an artist
“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”
58. Anaïs Nin on remaining too tight
“There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”
59. Oprah Winfrey on the people you surround yourself with
“Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.”
60. Friedrich Nietzsche on becoming stronger
“That which does not kill us makes us stronger.”
61. Cale Yarborough on arguing with an idiot
“Don’t ever wrestle with a pig. You’ll both get dirty, but the pig will enjoy it.”
62. Maimonides on knowing nothing
“Teach thy tongue to say, “I do not know,” and thous shalt progress.”
63. Audrey Hepburn on things that are impossible
“Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!”
64. Oliver James on doing your thing
“Do your own thing on your own terms and get what you came here for.”
65. Harrison Ford on persistence
“The only thing that I have done that is not mitigated by luck, diminished by good fortune, is that I persisted, and other people gave up.”
I hope you enjoyed this selection of inspirational quotes to live by. What are your favorite quotes that have shaped your life?