25 Short Inspirational Quotes and Sayings
Everyone likes to browse a few inspirational quotes every now and again as a quick and easy motivator, but sometimes quotes can be wordy and obscure. Who wants to bother reading a paragraph of verbose, confusing language? How is that going to inspire you to do anything but give up and go watch some TV? Below I’ve listed 25 of my personal favourite short, succinct and easy to grasp inspirational quotes and sayings, along with a little description of the meaning of each of them, so that you can get a quick fix of motivation and then go back to doing what you love.
25. "Don’t lose your present to your past." Unknown.
This is a short, simple and meaningful quote reminding you to live in the present. Learn from past mistakes and past successes, but don’t dwell on them.
24. "Once you choose hope, anything is possible." Christopher Reeve.
The importance of hope is featured in a lot of quotes, but I think that this one from actor and quadriplegic Christopher Reeve best encapsulates the idea.
23. "Pain makes people change." Unknown.
This one appeals to me so much because it’s meaning is so subjective. Pain makes people change- but in what way? Does it make you change for the better, or does it make you bitter and cynical? The choice is up to you.
22. "Education is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela.
If you think about it a little, the truth in this one is staggering. Education is the most powerful weapon, whether it be a PhD in astrophysics or a chat with your friend about how to best lay a brick. Whatever your dream is, education is the only thing that’s guaranteed to help you achieve it.
21. "It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves." Edmund Hillary.
In Hillary’s case, the mountain he was referring to was a literal mountain. For those of us who aren’t rock climbers, however, the 'mountain' could be symbolic of something else; a challenge we’ve faced or a goal we’ve set. The essence of this quote is that it isn’t the challenge that we conquer, but the part of ourself that was stopping us from rising to the said challenge.
20. "Creativity is contagious, pass it on." Albert Einstein.
I like this quote so much because people often think of science and creativity as being completely separate fields, when in fact creativity is an important element of even the most technical work. Einstein recognised this and the importance of creativity in general, and this quote exemplifies that understanding.
Greatest Inspirational Quotes
"Greatest Inspirational Quotes: 365 days to more happiness, success, and motivation" by Joe Tichio is one of my favourite books to browse through when I'm in need of some inspiration. Many of the quotes in this article came directly from it!
19. "Sometimes it takes a good fall to know where you really stand." Hayley Williams.
This simple quote from 'Paramore' singer Hayley Williams is a great one for people who’ve just suffered a setback or a loss. Sometimes such an event is needed to remind you of your own resilience and to sort the supportive people in your life from the unsupportive ones.
18. "Everything you can imagine is real." Pablo Picasso.
This is a fantastic little quote about the power of imagination, from one of the greatest creatives in history, Picasso.
17. "Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration." Thomas Edison.
This quote is a great one for people who look at the success of the others and think that they’ll never be able to achieve anything like it because they don’t have the right IQ score or natural talent. There are millions of smart, naturally talented people in the world who’ll never do anything with their lives because they don’t know how to work hard, and equally there are millions who aren’t born "special" but gain incredible success all because of their work ethic.
16. "Don’t count the days, make the days count." Muhammad Ali.
This quote from boxing legend Muhammed Ali is a nice reminder to live each day as it comes, rather than sitting back and watching your life pass by.
15. "Success is falling nine times and getting up ten." Jon Bon Jovi.
From the mouth of Jon Bon Jovi, these are some wise, profound words. It can be easy to doubt people who say that the only key to success is to fail and try again, but coming from such a successful musician you’re almost forced to take this quote seriously.
15. "Success is falling nine times and getting up ten."— Jon Bon Jovi.
14. "Without darkness, there are no stars." Unknown.
A great little quote about perspective. Without periods of feeling sad and hopeless, the times that you’re happy and motivated wouldn’t mean anything. Everything has its purpose, including darkness.
13. "Whatever you are, be a good one." Abraham Lincoln.
I think that there are two key messages in this quote. The first is to be true to yourself; whatever you are, not whatever you wish you were or whatever your family and peers have pressured you into being. The second is that you don’t have to be the best. Strive to be good, but not to beat out everyone in your chosen field or profession. If you try to maintain a goal of being the best, you’ll find that you become discouraged quickly when you realise that there’s no real subjective way to measure who the best is and that you’re chasing a dream of a kind of perfection that can’t even be defined.
12. "Make the rest of your life the best of your life." Unknown.
This quote is so powerful because it applies to anyone of any age; whether you’re in your teens, thirties or eighties there’s still time left to make the most of.
11. "Never regret anything that made you smile." Mark Twain.
Unless doing things that hurt other people make you smile, I think this is a great motto to live your life by. Looking back you might cringe at some of the things you’ve done, but if getting that lame flowery tattoo made you feel good at the time then you should never, ever regret it.
10. "Life is too short to spend it at war with yourself." Unknown.
'Life is too short’ quotes can sometimes be a little false and cliche sounding, but I make an exception in the case of this one. Internal conflict is good and helps you to grow as a person, up until the point when you’re focusing more on internal battles that the world around you. The majority of life should be spent looking outwards, not inwards.
10. "Life is too short to spend it at war with yourself."— Unknown
9. "Do what makes you happy." Unknown.
Simple, short, succinct, and yet a message that everyone could do with hearing at least once in their life. Strive to become something that makes you happy; not your parents, your friends or society at large. Stop and ask yourself regularly whether what you’re doing is actually fulfilling and brings (or will bring) you joy. If not, it’s time to make a change.
8. "There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever." Dalai Lama.
For the worriers of the world, this is an important message. Lying in bed at night and fretting about every stupid mistake you made that day has no benefit to you. It won’t help you grow as a person, it won’t help you to avoid the mistakes in the future and it’ll probably leave you feeling tired and drained. Healthy self-reflection is always a good thing, but not incessant worrying.
7. "The power of imagination makes us infinite." Unknown.
This is another nice quote that touches on the power of imagination. Creativity and imagination are skills that are often dismissed in today’s world, but if you think about it the ability to vividly imagine does make you infinite. Forget the sky; it’s your imagination that’s the limit.
6. "Every mistake just adds to your story." Unknown.
If you view mistakes in a purely negative light you’re going to be constantly terrified at the thought of making even the smallest error. If you view them as being valuable learning opportunities, however, you’ll find you don’t fear them quite as much. Each mistake adds experience and richness to the story of your life, and someday you’ll look back and map your life in the mistakes and errors that guided you to be the person you are now.
5. "Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life." Steve Jobs.
If Steve Jobs had wasted his time and energy pretending to be someone he wasn’t, do you think he ever would have attained the level of success that he did? Absolutely not. Life is too short to try and force yourself into someone else’s skin!
5. "Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life."— Steve Jobs.
4. "Don’t stop until you’re proud." Unknown.
This is a great little motivational quote. Keep working until you’re proud of the achievements you’ve made and the person that you’ve become!
3. "The best revenge is massive success." Unknown.
It can be hard not to lash out at the people who tell you that you’re never going to succeed. However, if you let anger and hatred consume you you’re never going to get anywhere, and you’ll just be proving them right. Rather than shouting and swearing, why not watch their faces as you climb that last step and reach the top?
2. "Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently." Henry Ford.
For being only 9 words, this is an incredibly powerful, thought-provoking quote. It’s also incredibly accurate if you take the time to think about it. With every failure, we learn and grow, meaning that when we start over we’re almost guaranteed to do a better job. Failure isn’t a step back; it’s a step forward.
1. "It’s up to you." Unknown.
This one speaks for itself, really. No one is going to achieve your dream for you, and likewise no one can stop you. It’s up to you.
1. "It’s up to you."— Unknown
And there we have it; 25 short, simple, inspirational quotes that will get you out of bed and achieving your goals and dreams. I hope you found a new favourite amongst these gems!
Questions & Answers
Do you have any more quotes or sayings?
Absolutely! Here's a few that didn't make the cut:
- "Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant." -Robert Louis Stevenson
- "Everything you've ever wanted is on the other side of fear." -George Addair
- "Be the change you wish to see in the world." -Gandhi
- "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." -Eleanor Roosevelt.
- "You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose." -Dr. Seuss.Helpful 23
© 2018 K S Lane