One of the essential ingredients to achieving your dreams is motivation. Without motivation, you don’t have the push to continue your bumpy climb. But where can you get your motivation? In general, there are many ways to improve your motivation physically, psychologically, and emotionally but one of the strongest ways is through people you admire.
You might look at your parents, siblings, grandparents, or other family members. You might also have friends and celebrities on your inspirational lists, such as Prince, Oprah Winfrey, J.K Rowling, and Sheryl Sandberg. Whether you are starting college or at the height of your career, you always need the motivation to reach success, and one way to do this is by reading inspirational quotes from some of the world’s most influential leaders.
30. “Progress will come in fits and starts. It’s not always a straight line. It’s not always a smooth path.” – Barack Obama
You know Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States. One of the few presidents to come into the White House with his family and leave without too much controversy. During his 2012 victory speech, Obama stated one of the most inspirational quotes with the above statement.
Obama spoke these words from his heart as he knows them as truth. As an African-American man, the odds of him reaching the White House remained against him, but he made it. He wanted his fellow Americans to realize that while the path they are on often seems bumpy, positive progress continues.
29.”Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.” – Albert Einstein
People know Albert Einstein best because of his many inventions and discoveries, such as the theory of relativity. However, Einstein was more than a scientist. He inspired people throughout his life and continues to do so today.
Einstein is a symbol of intelligence. He received the Nobel Prize and became outspoken about what he believed in. One of the factors of life Einstein pushed for people to continue is questioning and learning. He thought people need to learn from their mistakes and accomplishments, live in the moment, and continue to question everything around them.
28. “The Discipline Involved In Finishing A Piece Of Creative Work Is Something On Which You Can Truly Pride Yourself.” – J.K. Rowling
Self-discipline is one of the most laborious techniques to teach yourself. However, it is imperative, especially if you want to reach success. Some people find self-discipline easier to learn than other people, but no matter how easy it comes to you, it’s vital to strengthen it.
Self-discipline doesn’t always have ties to procrastination. In fact, many creative people don’t procrastinate at all. Their problem is they have so many ideas, it’s hard for them to finish a project. J.K Rowling believes that one way you can build your self-discipline is to notice how much pride you feel when you complete a project.
27. “Sharing Emotions Builds Deeper Relationships. Motivation Comes From Working On Things We Care About.” – Sheryl Sandberg
You have probably heard someone tell you the more interested you are in a project, the more you will work on it. Take a moment to think of a project or college course you took that you didn’t care about. Now, take a minute to think about the one you did care about. Do you notice a difference?
When we care about something, we put our emotions into it. Our feelings give us the drive to work on the project, and we become dedicated to succeed. According to Sandberg, your passions with a plan gives you a deeper relationship with your project.
26. “Determine Never To Be Idle. No Person Will Have The Occasion To Complain Of The Want Of Time, Who Never Loses Any.” – Thomas Jefferson
Jefferson is best known as the third President of the United States and author of the Declaration of Independence. However, Jefferson was more of a scholar, inventor, and teacher than history gives him credit. Every day, Jefferson woke up early to read and write as much as possible. He scheduled his whole day on how much he could learn on that day.
In his quote, Jefferson is telling others that they should follow his footsteps. Instead of spending time doing nothing, you should always do something. Schedule each second of your day so you can keep your mind busy.
25. “Don’t You Dare Underestimate The Power Of Your Own Instinct.” – Barbara Corcoran
Like most people, you spend much time questioning yourself. You have a “gut feeling” or an instinct about something but decide not to act on it because you worry your instincts are wrong. Usually, if you ignore your instincts, you regret it later because your feeling was right.
You need to learn to listen to your instincts and follow them. It doesn’t matter what they are telling you. You need to respect yourself enough to listen to what your instincts are telling you because they are often right.
24. “Move Fast And Break Things. Unless You Are Breaking Stuff, You Are Not Moving Fast Enough.” – Mark Zuckerberg
Zuckerberg is best known as the co-founder of Facebook. As an entrepreneur, he understands the value of making mistakes and wants others to see the value in them as well.
Zuckerberg’s quote comes from a well-known science and engineering industry phrase, “move fast and break things.” People often state this quote in the science world because it allows people to realize they will not learn and grow without making mistakes – or breaking things. Zuckerberg wants you to believe what he believes, which is you can’t create a complex and competitive environment without making mistakes.
23. “When It’s Tough, Will You Give Up, Or Will You Be Relentless?” – Jeff Bezos
The founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos has firsthand knowledge of what it takes to reach success. He knows that it’s a bumpy road and wants everyone to realize this is when they aim for their own goals.
When Bezos asks, “When it’s tough, will you give up, or will you be relentless?” he wants you to ask yourself what you will do to reach your goals. Will you continue on the path, even when your project failed or will you give up? Remember, even Amazon has put out a couple of failed products.
22. “Think Big And Make It Happen.” – Donald Trump
Political feelings aside, Trump stated the phrase, “Think big and make it happen,” and it’s a good piece of advice for everyone to listen to. It’s easy for you to stay in your comfort zone because you know it. You know what will happen next, you know how to handle it, and you know that you are successful in this location.
Take a moment to think about where Jeff Bezos, Oprah Winfrey, or Mark Zuckerberg would be today if they didn’t think beyond their comfort zone. Would we have Amazon or Facebook? You need to think beyond your comfort zone and do whatever you have your sights on because only you can make your dreams a reality.
21. “Everything Comes To Him Who Hustles While He Waits.” – Thomas Edison
You have goals that you want to reach. You have dreams you wish would come true. But, life never seems to give you a break. According to Thomas Edison’s quote, “Everything comes to him who hustles while he waits,” you will only reach these dreams and goals if you hustle while you are waiting.
Edison wants you to prepare, work hard, work fast, and continue working in the direction that will help you reach your goal. Take a moment to think to yourself. If an opportunity presented itself today, would you be ready?
20. “If You’re Changing The World, You’re Working On Important Things, You’re Excited To Get Up In The Morning.” – Larry Page
Page is the co-founder of Google and recently stepped down as the Chief Executive Officer of Alphabet, Inc. Page gives many interviews about his work on Google and how he and the internet search engine’s other co-founder, Sergey Brin, came up with the idea and kept going.
In one of these interviews, Page stated that they continued going because of their excitement about their work. They knew they were about to change the world and saw Google as an essential piece in everyone’s life. As Page stated, the more excited you are about what you are working on, the more excited you are to get out of bed and start your day.
19. “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.” – Steve Jobs
There’s a theme that follows a lot of inspirational leaders, and this is you need to find something that you love to do to reach the level of success that you want. Many people fall into a job because it will give them the financial resources they want without having to work too many hours or too hard. Other people settle because they don’t believe in themselves.
No matter what, it’s crucial that you don’t allow yourself to settle. Don’t worry about your age or where you are in life. Keep going until you find what you love to do and continue to thrive in that field.
18. “For A Startup, If Your Idea Doesn’t Work, Not Many People Will Have Noticed. Keep Pushing On To The Next Idea.” – Richard Branson
Branson is one of the most prominent businessmen in the world. In the 1970s, he found the Virgin Group and now manages over 400 companies in several fields. If there is one person who inspires entrepreneurs all over the world, it’s Branson.
With his hands in so many businesses, Branson knows a thing or two about starting a company. He understands failure and success perfectly and knows that people need to feel the failure to reach success. Therefore, Branson pushes people to continue trying their idea, even if one doesn’t work. Don’t worry about why your plan didn’t work. Instead, move on to your next one.
17. “Even If The Whole World Turns Their Back on You, You Still Have Yourself.” – Lady Gaga
At first, many people saw Lady Gaga as a singer who would stop at nothing to create a headline. However, once people started listening to her lyrics and what she had to say, they quickly realized she is more than a headline.
Through her lyrics, interviews, and speeches, Lady Gaga has given many people the drive to succeed by telling them two main statements. The first is that you need to be yourself, always. The second is that you don’t need to worry about people who don’t believe in you because you believe in yourself.
16. “If You Want To Live A Happy Life Tie It To A Goal, Not To People Or Things.” – Albert Einstein
How many times have you looked at what your friend or neighbor had and thought, “If I had that, I would be a happier person.” Einstein knew the truth when it came to materials in our lives and people. He knew that neither one held your true happiness because you need to find your happiness from inside of you.
What is the best way to do this? According to Einstein, you need to work towards your goals. The more you received what you truly wanted out of life, the happier you would become.
15. “You Shouldn’t Focus On Why You Can’t Do Something, Which Is What Most People Do. You Should Focus On Why Perhaps You Can, And Be One Of The Exceptions.” – Steve Case
Case is an investor, businessman, and entrepreneur. He is the former Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of America Online and someone many people find influential for several reasons. One of these reasons is because he believes in people and tells everyone who will listen that they can reach their highest potential, as long as they do one thing and think they can.
Case wants you to stop telling yourself that you can’t do something and know that you are someone special. Focus on what you truly love and continue down that path. Believe you are one of the exceptions in the world.
14. “Any Conversation I Have About Innovation Starts With The Ultimate Goal.” – Sergey Brin
Brin is an Internet entrepreneur and computer scientist who co-founded Google alongside Larry Page. Like Page, Brin takes his time talking to people and holds much influence when it comes to motivating people to believe in themselves and work towards their goals.
Brin believes the best way to start working towards your goal is to sit down and talk about what you want to do. Ask yourself what your ultimate goal is and then develop smaller steps that will help you reach the goal. Celebrate each time you reach a small goal, and as this will help keep you motivated to reach your main goal.
13. “Any Crusade Requires Optimism And The Ambition to Aim High.” – Paul Allen
In 1975, Allen and Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft. While several of us can’t imagine a world without Microsoft Office, Allen helped dream up the software and continued to develop it to help change the world.
Starting the corporation from nothing, Allen aimed his ambitions high and always believed in their dream. This concept is something that he felt everyone should do when they are trying to accomplish their goals in life. In fact, Allen told people to aim higher each time they reach a goal and always believe they will achieve everything they desire.
12. “Whenever You See A Successful Person, You Only See the Public Glories, Never The Private Sacrifices To Reach Them.” – Vaibhav Shah
It’s easy to look at what someone does successfully on a public platform. For example, you know what actors start in what major motion pictures. However, what you don’t often know is the road they took to become a star.
You don’t see how hard your influential leaders struggled, and this is something you should remember, especially when you are struggling during your journey. Even people who seem like they receive an easy path in life have struggles they face.
11. “Opportunities Don’t Happen. You Create Them.” – Chris Grosser
The only way you receive opportunities is by creating them for yourself. You’ll establish these opportunities through your connections, working hard, and remaining dedicated. The more you work, the more chances you’ll find.
You might fail at some of the opportunities you take on, but this doesn’t mean that more won’t come your way. The best factor to remember, according to photographer and entrepreneur Chris Grosser, is you create the opportunities yourself, so don’t wait around for one to fall into your lap.
10. “It Does Not Matter How Slowly You Go, So Long As You Do Not Stop.” – Confucius
Confucius wants you to remember that it isn’t over until you reach your goal. No matter how long it takes you to get there, the important part is that you keep on keeping on. You do whatever you can to go the distance and continue moving in your direct path.
You will find that some goals are easily reached while others will take years. The time it takes you to reach your goal doesn’t matter. What matters is that you do reach your goal. No matter what you do, don’t let any setback get in your way.
9. “It Is Not The Strongest Of The Species That Survive, Nor The Most Intelligent, But The One Most Responsive To Change.” – Charles Darwin
Even though some people handle change better than other people, no one likes change. There is much variation within yourself that you need to complete when something changes externally. Sometimes people believe that the best people to handle change are the ones who are smart and intelligent.
It’s a myth that weak people have the worst time with change. As Darwin states, the best person to handle change is the one who remains flexible and responds with the change.
8. “Friendship With One’s Self Is All-Important, Because Without It One Can Not Be Friends With Anyone Else In The World.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Roosevelt is one of the most well-known first ladies of the United States because of how influential she became. Beyond her role as the first lady, she became a humanitarian, author, and public figure.
While she has several famous quotes, one of her great ones talks about how you need to learn to love yourself before you can love anyone else in the world. The way you speak and treat yourself should go above anyone else because you need to feel like you matter before you can help other people believe that they matter.
7. “Success Is Walking From Failure To Failure With No Loss Of Enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill
It’s easy to lose faith in yourself when you come across failure, primarily when you worked so hard to make the project successful. You might feel like giving up on your other dreams because you feel like you are not good enough and won’t become successful. When this happens, you need to read this wise quote from Winston Churchill.
Churchill, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during World War II, understood failure. He also knew that no matter how many times you fail, you need to continue on your path without losing an ounce of faith or excitement for your dreams, as this will lead you to success.
6. “Someone Is Sitting In The Shade Today Because Someone Planted A Tree A Long Time Ago.” – Warren Buffett
Buffett is a well-known investor who has made millions by holding stocks without selling them. In fact, he believes that you should hold on to your investments forever. Therefore, when Buffett says, “someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago,” he is talking about delaying gratification.
He wants people to think of the long-term outlook when it comes to success and realize that while they might have very little now, they can plant a tree to help others. At the same time, you shouldn’t forget where your ancestors came from as you are here because of them.
5. “All Our Dreams Can Come True If We HaveThe Courage To Pursue Them.” – Walt Disney
Disney is one of the most creative minds who developed a way for families to come together to watch a movie for generations. Disney movies never seem to get old.
One factor about Disney is that it’s a place full of magic and where dreams come true. Disney believed that no matter who you are, you can make your dreams come true. The trick is you need to have the courage to reach your goals and the willpower to make your dreams happen.
4. “The Best And Most Beautiful Things In The World Cannot Be Seen Or Even Touched — They Must Be Felt With The Heart.” – Helen Keller
Keller is an inspiration to many as she became successful even after losing her hearing and vision as an infant. She became the first person who couldn’t see or hear to receive a Bachelor of Arts degree and became a lecturer, political activist, and writer. While her story is well-known, many of her most inspirational quotes, such as this one, are not.
When Keller talks about feeling the most beautiful things in the world with her heart, it comes from her personal experience as she had to do just that to understand the best and most beautiful things.
3. “What Seems To Us As Bitter Trials Are Often Blessings in Disguise.” – Oscar Wilde
Oscar Wilde became one of the most well-known playwrights in London during the 1880s. While he wrote over 100 years ago, his works still leave a mark in the lives of many people. People from all over the world continue to adore Oscar Wilde’s books, poems, and plays.
Wilde also became one of the first people to try to inform others that the struggles they face will help them achieve greatness. He wanted to make sure people realized they had to continue down their path, even if they are facing bitter trials as they will soon find a blessing.
2. “The Two Most Important Days In Your Life Are The Day You Are Born And The Day You Find Out Why.” – Mark Twain
Known as one of the best writers in history, Mark Twain wrote several classic novels, such as The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain gave the world entertainment for centuries to come. However, he also gave people some of the most influential quotes of the 19th century, such as the one above. With this quote, Twain tells people that you are essential and have a purpose for being in this world.
The day you came into this world is important because it started your path. Then, once you learn what your mission in life is, you can start reaching your goals and help the world become a better place.
1. “Leave Nothing for Tomorrow Which Can Be Done Today.” – Abraham Lincoln
Lincoln is a household name in the United States. While some states might see him as more as a leader than others, people cannot deny that he remains one of the best presidents to ever walk into the White House. From the moment he stepped foot into the White House until his death, Lincoln faced some of the darkest days on American soil during the Civil War.
However, he always tried to shine a light on these dark times through his philosophy and compassion for other people. One of Lincoln’s famous quotes discusses how it’s best not to procrastinate when you can get it done today.
“37 Quotes on Motivation From the World’s Most Influential Leaders.” Rose Leadem, Entrepreneur. December 2019.
“101 Inspiring Quotes From the Most Successful People in History.” Sujan Patel, Inc. June 2015.
“Top 25 Eleanor Roosevelt Quotes to Inspire Your Greatness.” Goalcast. April 2017.
“33 Abraham Lincoln Quotes That Remain Relevant Now More Than Ever.” Erin Kelly, All That’s Interesting. March 2018.