Motivation is the drive to accomplish a task or achieve a goal. It's the essential spark that fuels ideas big and small and keep you moving toward your dreams. Goals and dreams aren't only made of motivation. You need to harness that drive into hard work to reach the goals you've set for yourself.
Motivational quotes can offer inspiration and help you gather and focus your motivation each and every day. Reading the perfect motivational quote can feel like having a cheering section pop up just when you need it most. Words of inspiration from influential figures can inspire you to start a new project, give your team a pep talk, overcome adversity, or take better care of yourself.
Motivational quotes can be serious, spiritual, sentimental, sweet, or simply hilarious.
Here are some of our favorite motivational quotes that can help you seize the day no matter what your goals may be.
Table of Contents:
Motivation to Start Something New
The hardest part of starting a new project can be taking the first step. Part of that is because of the uncertain nature of starting something from scratch, you can't be sure whether you'll see any reward from your work and there is always the pesky fear of failure. The drive to do something simply because you feel a passionate desire to do it is called intrinsic motivation.
Working on passion projects can be rewarding but scary. These quotes will help motivate you to try something new.
- "If you are working on something that you really care about, you don't have to be pushed. The vision pulls you." — Steve Jobs.
- "All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them." —Walt Disney.
- "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." —Mark Twain.
- "The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity." —Amelia Earhart.
- "I'd rather regret the things I've done than regret the things I haven't done." —Lucille Ball.
- "The two most important days in your life are the day you're born and the day you find out why." – Mark Twain.
- "Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago." —Warren Buffet.
- "Inspiration does exist, but it must find you working." —Pablo Picasso.
- "Live out of your imagination, not your history." —Stephen Covey.
- "Nature has given us all the pieces required to achieve exceptional wellness and health, but has left it to us to put these pieces together."—Diane McLaren.
- "I'm a greater believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it." — Thomas Jefferson.
- "Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it." — Steve Jobs.
Motivation to Keep Going
Making yourself stick with something even when the outcome is uncertain, the work is difficult, or the process is frightening is one of the hardest things to do. You might have to dig deep to find the motivation to keep going toward your goals.
These quotes about the value of persistence can help you find the motivation you need to take the next steps.
- "People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing – that's why we recommend it daily." — Zig Ziglar.
- "Make a Friday a day to celebrate work well done that you can be proud of knowing that you just didn't put in the time to the next paycheck." —Byron Pulsifer.
- "I've missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times I've been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life, and that is why I succeed." —Michael Jordan.
- "It's hard to beat a person who never gives up." —Babe Ruth.
- "The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg. It's what you're made of. Not the circumstances." —Unknown.
- "If something is important enough, even if the odds are stacked against you, you should still do it." —Elon Musk.
- "The hard days are what make you stronger." ―Aly Raisman.
- "Work hard for what you want because it won't come to you without a fight. You have to be strong and courageous and know that you can do anything you put your mind to. If somebody puts you down or criticizes you, just keep on believing in yourself and turn it into something positive." ―Leah LaBelle.
- "The big secret in life is that there is no secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you're willing to work." ―Oprah Winfrey.
- "Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do." ―Pele.
Gathering energy for the week is a universal Monday task. Whether you're headed into your office, onto the playing field, or going to a class, these quotes can help you make the most of your Monday.
- "This should be the spirit every Monday. Know that something good will always happen." — Gabriel García Márquez.
- "So. Monday. We meet again. We will never be friends—but maybe we can move past our mutual enmity toward a more positive partnership." ― Julio-Alexi Genao.
- "When life gives you Monday, dip it in glitter and sparkle all day." — Ella Woodword.
- "Mondays are the start of the work week which offer new beginnings 52 times a year! "― David Dweck.
- "Your Monday morning thoughts set the tone for your whole week. See yourself getting stronger, and living a fulfilling, happier & healthier life." ― Germany Kent.
- "I hated every minute of training, but I said, 'Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion." ― Muhammad Ali.
- "What starts on Monday should carry through to Friday; that is, enthusiasm." — Byron Pulsifer.
- "Your talent determines what you can do. Your motivation determines how much you are willing to do. Your attitude determines how well you do it." — Lou Holtz.
- "OK, it's Monday but who said Mondays have to suck? Be a rebel and have a great day anyway." — Kimberly Jiménez.
- "I'm always thinking about creating. My future starts when I wake up every morning. Every day I find something creative to do with my life." — Miles Davis.
Motivation to Try Again
Failure is a fact of life. Eventually, you will come to understand that even though you will not always be successful on every attempt, you learn so much from each and every experience. How you handle failure and move on after failure defines who you are and can increase your chances of success in the future.
These quotes will help you gather the motivation to try again.
- "Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently." — Henry Ford.
- "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work." — Thomas A. Edison.
- "It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I am not going to be silent." ― Madeleine Albright.
- "I never lose. Either I win or learn." ― Nelson Mandela.
- "A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him." ― David Brinkley.
- "Failure after long perseverance is much grander than never to have a striving good enough to be called a failure." ― George Eliot.
- "Develop success from failures. Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success." ― Dale Carnegie.
- "Take criticism seriously, but not personally. If there is truth or merit in the criticism, try to learn from it. Otherwise, let it roll right off you." ―Hillary Clinton.
- "We can do anything we want to if we stick to it long enough." ― Helen Keller.
- "Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It's quite simple, really: Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn't at all. You can be discouraged by failure or you can learn from it, so go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because remember, that's where you will find success." ― Thomas J. Watson.
Short Motivational Quotes
You don’t need to read an entire book to gather wisdom and inspiration. Sometimes just a few words are enough to give you that spark of insight you need. These short quotes pack a lot of motivation into just a few words.
- "Just one small positive thought in the morning can change your whole day." — Dalai Lama.
- "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." ― Theodore Roosevelt.
- "If you want to fly, give up everything that weighs you down." ― Buddha.
- "Memories of our lives, of our works, and our deeds, will continue in others." ― Rose Parks.
- "If you can dream it, you can do it." ― Walt Disney.
- "Only do what your heart tells you." ― Princess Diana.
- "Be the change that you wish to see in the world." ― Mahatma Gandhi.
- "Everything is hard before it is easy." ― Goethe.
- "Talent wins games, but teamwork wins championships." ― Michael Jordan.
- "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now." ― Chinese Proverb.
Funny Motivational Quotes
A little humor can be just the pick me up you need to find your inspiration again. Laughter really can be the best medicine, especially if you're in a bit of a slump. These funny motivational quotes can give you a smile as well as a boost.
- "Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." ― Will Rogers.
- "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." ― George Bernard Shaw.
- "Too much of a good thing can be wonderful." ― Mae West.
- "You must learn from the mistakes of others. You can't possibly live long enough to make them all yourself." ― Sam Levenson.
- "Never follow anyone else's path. Unless you're in the woods and you're lost and you see a path. Then, by all means, follow that path."— Ellen DeGeneres.
- "Listen, smile, agree, and then do whatever you were gonna do anyway. "― Robert Downey Jr.
- "Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom." ― Terry Pratchett.
- "To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone, and a funny bone." ― Reba McEntire.
- "A failure is like fertilizer; it stinks to be sure, but it makes things grow faster in the future."― Denis Waitley.
- "If you think you are too small to be effective, you have never been in bed with a mosquito." ― Bette Reese.
Motivational Quotes for Women
Successful women are often the best role models for women seeking advice. Women who have become leaders in their respective fields often share insights they have gained from their experiences in order to help other women succeed. These motivational quotes from inspirational women offer strength and wisdom to other women.
- "If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman." ― Margaret Thatcher.
- "We need women at all levels, including the top, to change the dynamic, reshape the conversation, to make sure women's voices are heard and heeded, not overlooked and ignored." ― Sheryl Sandberg.
- "Don't settle for average. Bring your best to the moment. Then, whether it fails or succeeds, at least you know you gave all you had." — Angela Bassett.
- "There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost." ―Martha Graham.
- "Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know." ― Pema Chodron.
- "A surplus of effort could overcome a deficit of confidence." — Sonia Sotomayor.
- "I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.” — Estée Lauder.
- "When you give joy to other people, you get more joy in return. You should give a good thought to happiness that you can give out."— Eleanor Roosevelt.
- "You can waste your lives drawing lines. Or you can live your life crossing them." ― Shonda Rhimes.
- "Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!" — Audrey Hepburn.
Whether you’re making a fresh start on a business idea or gathering the energy for a final push in one of your projects, reading and learning from motivational quotes can help you find the inspiration you need to keep going! Post your favorite quotes on your desk or mirror. You can even enter quotes into your calendar and have them pop up as reminders. We hope that these quotes give you the motivation your need to be your best self.