1024px-Death_valley_deserts_sand_dunes Yesterday was not one of my better days.

So I turned to something I knew would inspire, would motivate and get me thinking about my life and my dreams and how I could make them better.

If you need something to lift your spirits, here are the words I turned to; 40 encouraging quotes designed to inspire. They’re quotes that will hopefully get you thinking about your life, your work, or your dreams. A little reminder that we can always keep moving forward.


  1. Press on – nothing can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Perseverance and determination alone are omnipotent. ~ Calvin Coolidge
  2. Most of us, swimming against the tides of trouble the world knows nothing about, need only a bit of praise or encouragement…and we will make the goal. ~ Jerome Fleishman
  3. It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves. ~ Edmund Hillary
  4. If you don’t pay appropriate attention to what has your attention, it will take more of your attention than it deserves. ~ David Allen
  5. Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do. ~ Ben Spock
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  7. If you have made mistakes, there is always another chance for you. You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call ‘failure’ is not the falling down, but the staying down. ~ Mary Pickford
  8. If one dream should fall and break into a thousand pieces, never be afraid to pick one of those pieces up and begin again. ~ Flavia
  9. Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t. ~ Rikki Rogers
  10. Set your sights high, the higher the better. Expect the most wonderful things to happen, not in the future but right now. Realize that nothing is too good. Allow absolutely nothing to hamper you or hold you up in any way. ~ Eileen Caddy

Uncover your dreams

  1. If you wait to do everything until you are sure it’s right, you’ll probably never do much of anything. ~  Win Borden
  2. Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life. Think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success. That is way great spiritual giants are produced. ~ Swami Vivekananda
  3. Don’t be afraid to take big steps. You cannot cross a chasm in two small jumps. ~ David Lloyd George
  4. Flow with whatever may happen and let your mind be free. Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is the ultimate. ~ Zhuangzi
  5. Ask yourself, ‘how long am I going to work to make my dreams come true?’ I suggest you answer, ‘as long as it takes.’ ~ Jim Rohn
  6. Nothing else matters much…not wealth, nor learning, nor even health…without this gift: the spiritual capacity to keep zest in living. This is the creed of creeds, the final deposit and distillation of all important faiths: that you should be able to believe in life. ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick
  7. A dream is your creative vision for your life in the future. A goal is what specifically you intend to make happen. Dreams and goals should be just out of your present reach but not out of sight. Dreams and goals are coming attractions in your life. ~ Joseph Campbell
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  9. Dreams are renewable. No matter what our age or condition, there are still untapped possibilities within us and new beauty waiting to be born. ~ Dale E. Turner
  10. I learned that there were two ways I could live my life: following my dreams or doing something else. Dreams aren’t a matter of chance, but a matter of choice. When I dream, I believe I am rehearsing my future. ~ David Copperfield


  1. Use what talents you possess, the woods will be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best. ~ Henry van Dyke
  2. Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow. ~ Mary Anne Radmacher
  3. Don’t make excuses. Make things happen. Make changes. Then make history. ~ Doug Hall
  4. If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading. ~ Lao-Tzu
  5. Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward. ~ C.S. Lewis
  6. Inspire yourself and others will be inspired. Motivate yourself and others will be motivated. Develop yourself and others will start to develop themselves. Be an example first and then the world changes around you. ~ Unknown
  7. Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. ~ George Bernard Shaw
  8. Next to trying and winning, the best thing is trying and failing. ~ L.M. Montgomery
  9. The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. ~ C.JoyBell C
  10. When you don’t like a thing change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. ~ Maya Angelou


  1. I have become my own version of an optimist. If I can’t make it through one door, I’ll go through another door – or I’ll make a door. Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present. ~ Rabindranath Tagore
  2. The only Zen you can find on the tops of mountains is the Zen you bring up there. ~ Robert M. Pirsig
  3. Have patience. Wait until the mud settles and the water is clear. Remain unmoving until right action arises by itself. ~ Lao Tzu
  4. Picture yourself vividly as winning, and that alone will contribute immeasuarably to success. ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick
  5. Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storms, but to add colour to my sunset sky. ~ Radindranath Tagore
  6. In oneself lies the whole world and if you know how to look and learn, the door is there and the key is in your hand. Nobody on earth can give you either the key or the door to open, except yourself. ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti
  7. Self-confidence is the most attractive quality a person can have. How can anyone see how awesome you are if you can’t see it yourself? – Unknown
  8. If we know exactly where we’re going, exactly how to get there, and exactly what we’ll see along the way, we won’t learn anything. ~ M. Scott Peck
  9. Each day brings with it the miracle of a new beginning. Many of the moments ahead will be marvelously disguised as ordinary days, but each one of us has the chance to make something extraordinary out of them. ~ Douglas Pagels
  10. Always remember, there is more strength in you than you ever realized or even imagined. Certainly nothing can keep you down if you are determined to get on top of things and stay there. ~ Norman Vincent Peale

Do you have a favourite quote. One that breathes life into your dreams? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. If you have friends who’d enjoy some quotes to make their life a little better, please share. Most of us could use a bit of encouragement.

Encourage one another.

Love Elle


Elle Sommer is the author of 4 books and a workbook. Her latest publications are a series called The Power of Consciousness, and you will find all three books in this trilogy now available on Kindle. She shares quotes, inspiration and positive vibes on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. And her greatest desire is to encourage and inspire others to create not just a good life, but a phenomenal life.


  1. Absolutely fabulous quotes! What a treasure chest. I’m printing these up and hanging them where I can easily refer back to them. Thank you.

    • Elle

      Hi Harriet…I too love having quotes readily available to shift my perspective in a blink of an eye. I’m so happy you enjoyed them. 🙂

  2. I love these….especially love Lao Tzu so enjoyed the quotes from him.

    Many of my faves come from Viktor Frankl: “Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

    Another is this one: “Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather he must recognize that it is he who is asked.”

    Thanks for sharing these, Elle

    • Viktor Frankl is my all time favorite as well. I’ve underlined at least half of his book, Man’s Search for Meaning and I’d say it was this book that has definitely changed the way I view life. I re-read it often.

      • I agree, Harriet. It’s such a clear treatise on personal responsibility and human potential…with a credibility that can not be easily be matched. It’s insightful with each new read-through.

    • Elle

      Viktor Frankl is incredibly inspiring Steve. He wasn’t on this list because I used a few of his quotes right here, in an older post. I’m glad you liked the quotes. I must say, just putting them together is a great feeling way to invest my time. 🙂

      • I loved the quotes you did share, Elle. And I love that alternate post you linked to as well! 🙂 I love what you said about just the act of compiling them is a great way to invest one’s time. Thanks for doing the work…and then sharing with us! Loved it.

        • Elle

          Thanks for the encouragement Steve, you delight my heart. 🙂

  3. Elle –
    What a great pick me up this Monday morning. I love reading through and seeing which ones initially grabs my eye – several, not surprisingly.

    But this morning, it is the Joseph Campbell quote that I am copying and keeping near me for the day….

    “A dream is your creative vision for your life in the future. A goal is what specifically you intend to make happen. Dreams and goals should be just out of your present reach but not out of sight. Dreams and goals are coming attractions in your life. ~ ”


    • Elle

      Hi Fran…that’s a really interesting point you make that at different times, a different quote will resonate more strongly than another one. You can’t read through them and not feel uplifted can you? 🙂

  4. What a wonderful collection Elle
    my fave is Be the change you want to see in the world – Gandhi
    I love the quote fromTagore and this is a new one for me
    Each day brings with it the miracle of a new beginning. Many of the moments ahead will be marvelously disguised as ordinary days, but each one of us has the chance to make something extraordinary out of them. ~ Douglas Pagels
    Namaste xx

    • Elle

      Thanks Suzie, it’s such an uplifting exercise. I think I recently used the Douglas Pagels quote on a post on G+. It’s wonderful. 🙂

  5. Dear Elle,
    I love this collection of quotes! They are motivating and inspiring.
    Just what I needed a cold snowy day.

    • Elle

      Thanks Angela, I think it was a drizzling rainy day here when I compiled them. 🙂

  6. Hi Elle,
    Your quotes certainly pep us up.
    the best is this one “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading. ~ Lao-Tzu”
    It’s so pithy and profound.And i couldnt help laughing as i read it aloud more than once.This quote says so much about our thought processes.We eventually end up where we visit most often…(with our minds that is)!

    Another one i personally like from Lao Tzu is “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”


    • Elle

      That’s a great awareness Mona..and so spot on. We’re always going to be heading in the direction our thinking takes us. That’s another great Lao Tzu quote you mention. Simply being who we are is a wonderful gift to the world. There isn’t another living soul exactly like you. You are the blessing. 🙂

  7. Wow, I just released an article on 5 life-changing Jim Rohn quotes. His are the best! Oh, and I like the one on dreams by David Copperfield too!

    “When I dream, I believe I am rehearsing my future.” ~ Powerful stuff. 🙂

    • Elle

      Hi Jeremy, I’m going to take a look at your 5 life changing quotes. There’s a simple way to live our life and it’s embodied in all these profound thoughts from great thinkers. All we need do is practice. 🙂

    • Elle

      Hi Odion, so glad you enjoyed the quotes…they’re inspiring and encouraging to us all. 🙂

  8. Elle darling,
    The Quotes Junkie in me is sending you a million hugs for this beautiful collection you have put together here.
    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you…for this glorious resource.
    Much Love,

    • Elle

      As a soul-sister quote junkie Zeenat, I know just what you mean. There’s always such a wealth of wisdom in the great thinkers of our world. 🙂

    • Elle

      Thanks Cathy. I think I’m truly blessed that even my less than ideal day still has little gems of wonder in it. Glad you enjoyed the quotes. 🙂

  9. I just LOVE good quotes! I especially love “When you don’t like a thing change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. ~ Maya Angelou”
    Thanks for sharing with us all!


    • Elle

      Maya Angelou has some wonderful words of wisdom to share with us Melissa. It’s nice to have people in our lifetime with inspiring quotes to share. 🙂

  10. I love quotes too. You have compiled an excellent collection of them. I enjoyed so many of the ones that you have featured here that it is hard to pick a favourite! Thank you for being the gift that you are!

    • Elle

      Hi Evelyn and thanks for stopping by. Your kind encouragement lights my heart. 🙂

  11. How inspiring! Thanks for sharing. I like to write these type of quotes on post-it notes and hang them around my room. So inspiring when I see them first thing in the morning.

    • Elle

      Hi Carol, what a great idea with the quotes. It’s a wonderful thing to have them handy…as a reminder of who we really are and our capabilities. 🙂

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