1. “If it is to be, it is up to me” William H Johnson

2. “It matters not how strait the gate; how charged with punishments the scrolls; I am the Master of my fate; I am the Captain of my soul“. William Henley

3. “Grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can: and wisdom to know the difference” Reinhold Niebuhr

4. “Man cannot discover new oceans until he has the courage to lose sight of the shore” Andre Gide

5. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.” Vivian Greene

6. “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you startNido Qubein

7. ” The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.” Mark Twain

8. “As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.” Nelson Mandela

9.“Not forgiving is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.**

10. “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 and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, 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 he fails while daring greatly.  So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt

11. “You will find her outside sitting on a large rock looking out over the water or inside looking out the window with a pensive appearance….. Yes, I like this person very much. She is me.”   ‘Donna’ from “Introvert Power” by Laurie Helgoe

12. “I inhale great draughts of space,
The east and the west are mine, and the north and the south are mine.
I am larger, better than I thought,
I did not know I held so much goodness.”
from Part 5 ‘Song Of The Open Road’ by Walt Whitman.

13. “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start”. Nido Qubein

14. “As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

15. “If her past were your past, her pain your pain, her level of consciousness, your level of consciousness; you would think exactly as she does.
With this realisation comes forgiveness, compassion and peace.”
Eckhart Tolle

16. We pass on the  values of empathy and kindness to our children by living them. We need to show our kids that you’re strong not by putting other people down – you’re strong by lifting them up. That’s our responsibility. Barack Obama

17. “In matters of principle stand like a rock” Thomas Jefferson

18. “When the night has come, And the land is dark, And the moon the only light we’ll see
No I won’t be afraid, no I won’t be afraid, Just as long as you stand, stand by me”
Ben E. King

19. “It’s not right, but it’s okay I’m gonna make it anyway”.  Whitney Houston

20. “Helping others is what helps you get stronger. Do it before you feel strong. It makes you step outside yourself and move forward because you are helping others.”  Quote by my daughter.

21. “In times of crisis, whether wild fires or smoldering stress, the first thing to do is go back to basics….. am I eating right, am I getting enough sleep, am I getting some physical and mental exercise everyday”. Edward Albert

22. ‘Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, until in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom’ Robert Kennedy after the assassination of Martin Luther King quoting Edith Hamilton’s translation of a poem by Aeschylus from Agamemnon.

23. “Hope is what happens when the pain eases a bit; and deep down inside, you find your true grit.” Catherine DeVrye from ‘Hope happens’

24. “The goal we seek, and the good we hope for, comes not as some final reward but as the hidden companion to our quest. It is not what we find, but the reason we cannot stop looking and striving, that tells us why we are here”. Madeleine Albright

25. “Learn to be what you are, And learn to resign with a good grace,
all that you are not” Henri Frederic Amiel

26. “I wish grace and healing were more abracadabra kind of things. Also, that delicate silver bells would ring to announce grace’s arrival. But no, it’s clog and slog … on the floor, in the silence, in the dark” Anne Lamott

27. “Our most difficult experiences can become the crucibles that forge our character and develop the internal powers, the freedom to handle difficult circumstances“ Stephen Covey. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

28. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy” Martin Luther King Jnr

29.“After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.” Nelson Mandela.

30. “You must try, the voice said, to become colder.
I understood at once.
It’s like the bodies of gods: cast in bronze, braced in stone.
Only something heartless could bear the full weight.”
― Jane Hirshfield

31. “Water is fluid, soft and yielding but water will wear away a rock, which is rigid and cannot yield……what is soft is strong.” Lao Tzu
.“We never understand how little we need in this world until we know the loss of it” James M Barrie32. “I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”
― Brené Brown33. “I’m here to be me, which is taking a great deal longer than I had hoped”.
Anne Lamont

34. “The key is not to prioritise your schedule, but to schedule your priorities”
Stephen Covey

35. “Look at the word responsibility – “Response-ability” – the ability to choose your response. Highly pro-active people recognise that responsibility. They do not blame circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for their behaviour.”  Stephen Covey. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

36. “This is about life. It is one wave after another wave and you are struggling to go on……If you survive, you can tell the story, you can go on. If you don’t survive……..  that’s it.”                                      Maria Belon. Tsunami 2004 survivor.

37. “When the pain of what we are living becomes greater than our fear of changing, we let go. When our fear of drowning swamps our fear of holding onto nothing, we start to swim”. Louise Gallagher

38. Life is mainly froth and bubble. Two things stand like stone; kindness in another’s trouble; courage in your own. Adam Lindsay Gordon

39. The purpose of our lives is to be happy. Dalai Lama, Tibetan Leader.

40. “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

41. “The purpose of life is a life of purpose” Richard Leider

42. “Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it”
Gautama Buddha

43. “Accept yourself, your strengths, your weaknesses, your truths, and know what tools you have to fulfill your purpose.”  Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free

44. “Yo soy yo y mi circunstancia” (‘I am I, plus my circumstances’).
Jose Ortega y Casset. Spanish Philosopher

45. My message to those of you involved in this battle of brother against brother is this: take your guns, your knives, and your pangas, and throw them into the sea! Nelson Mandela.

46. “Peace involves inevitable righteousness, justice, wholesomeness, fullness of life, participation in decision making, goodness, laughter, joy, compassion, sharing and reconciliation. “ Desmond Tutu

47. Life is difficult”. This is a great truth.M.Scott Peck.

48. “You must sleep some time between lunch and dinner….. Don’t think you will be doing less work because you sleep during the day. That’s a foolish notion held by people who have no imagination. You will be able to accomplish more. You get two days in one – well, at least one and a half, I’m sure. When the war started, I had to sleep during the day because that was the only way I could cope with my responsibilities.” Winston Churchill 



Note: I have seen quote 9 attributed to Carrie Fisher, McCourt, Nelson Mandela, Buddhist teachings, and the bible. Can anyone confirm the original author?

35 thoughts on “40 quotes

  1. Here’s one for you that I appreciate: “”Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay then it’s not the end.” ~Paolo Coelho (Brazilian author)

  2. To him(her) whose elastic and vigorous thought keeps pace with the sun, the day is a perpetual morning. It matters not what the clocks say or the attitudes and labors of men. Morning is when I am awake and there is a dawn in me.

    ~ Henry David Thoreau

      • ‘HAD I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
        Enwrought with golden and silver light,
        The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
        Of night and light and the half light,
        I would spread the cloths under your feet:
        But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
        I have spread my dreams under your feet;
        Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.’

        W.B. Yeats (1865–1939)
        “He Wishes For the Cloths of Heaven”
        from the Collected Works of W.B. Yeats

  3. Hi Elizabeth. I love your blog (I discovered it through Clarabelle.) You may have seen the quote I left on her blog. It’s from Oprah Winfrey … ‘The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change their future by merely changing their attitude.’ Have an awesome day!

    • Thanks for stopping by my blog and for the quote. It is truly an inspiring quote from an inspiring lady.

      I have looked at your blog. It is fantastic. A lot of positiveness there for people to follow.
      By the way, I am a nutritionist in a previous life…. AND I specialized in food sensitivities.
      I may take up that topic with you further on….

      Have a great weekend…….

    • Thanks for stopping by my blog.
      It is fascinating the quotes and songs and poems that inspire us. I am so happy that you found my collection useful to you.

      I like your blog and the concept of a belief in oneself – as you say ‘who said elephants can’t fly?”

      Have a great weekend.

  4. Great list of quotes . . . many from sources I recognize and have come across in my lifetime as well. Little nuggets of truth like these are the kind that have bound the edges of my tapestry through the years. Thank goodness for the visionaries amongst us!

    • Great minds think alike – ah, now there is another one 🙂
      I tend to swap my favourites around from time to time. Yet it is amazing how pinning one up on the fridge or computer and reading it over and over every day can alter your mental attitude and assist in striving forward.

      • So true. I have a bunch pinned up in my working area all the time that help me stay focused on the big picture (amongst the ten zillion post-it notes that overrun the same area! lol)

  5. Alas, no recent post from you so I revisited this page. This quotes are just wonderful, Elizabeth.

    Aren’t we too pathetic we keep needing reminders!! But these reminders were excellent to me today.

    • Ah yes… I have been distracted from my blogging this past week or so. I will post again in a day or two.
      yes, the quotes are good pointers to keep leading us on.
      Thanks for stopping by.

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