10 Quotes That Motivate Us, Bring Us Joy, and Give Us a Boost Of Inspiration

Words hold the power to arm us with resilience and help us when we’re feeling stuck.

Rawpixel/ Getty Images
Rawpixel/ Getty Images

Words hold the power to give us a boost of inspiration when we’re feeling stuck, fill us with joy when we need a boost, and arm us with resilience and strength during a difficult time. That’s why, when we come across a quote that resonates with us — whether from an author, thought leader or poet, or a favorite movie, song, book or podcast — it can be incredibly powerful to write it down and return to it when we need it most. 

We asked our Thrive community to share with us the quotes that they love, and how they inspire them and bring them joy. Which of these quotes resonate with you?

“You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” 

“Eleanor Roosevelt said this quote, and it represents my why. It inspires strength in me as I partner with smart, accomplished women in charting their course for what they once thought impossible — to be true to themselves while doing work that is both meaningful and prosperous.”

—Carole Dupre, career coach, Mandeville, LA

“We’re all just walking each other home.” 

“I love this quote from Ram Dass. We might not agree on where or what  home really is,or how to get there, but we are each on our own journey. I do not know how difficult your journey is, and you do not know the details of mine. But this quote reminds me of our connectedness. We all want to be loved and to be happy, and we can help one another by remembering that we are all here together. When I am having challenges with the beliefs and behaviors of others, I like to remind myself that we are all caretakers of one another. We are here to help each other on our journey home. We have a responsibility to treat each other with compassion.”

—Margaret Meloni, author, Long Beach, CA

“Be really good every day at all the things that don’t take talent.” 

“Bo Ryan, the former Wisconsin basketball coach, said this quote, and it is my favorite. It encapsulates the importance of focusing on things within our control.”

—S. Peck, internal auditor, Philadelphia, PA

“If you really want to do something, you find a way. If you don’t, you will find an excuse.”  

‘This Jim Rohn quote reminds me that I can accomplish anything and if I am struggling I need to look at what I am telling myself. Then, I need to ask myself if I actually want something. Incongruences provide clarity, and either way I’m excited about what’s next.”

—Tamar Hermes, real estate investor, Austin, TX

“Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” 

“Both as an entrepreneur and in my personal life, I am moved by these words from Mike Tyson. This is my favorite quote because it’s so true!  I am always working on my vision and being in the mental frame to fight the obstacles ahead. Grit and determination are the assets I most value. I have learned to be confident because I know I can pick myself up and start again.”

—Craig Taylor, CEO and founder, Houston, TX

“The beauty you see in me is a reflection of you.”

“I often turn to this quote from Rumi. Because of the pandemic, my husband and I returned from retirement in Medellin, Colombia to create a home with my 89-year-old mom in Iowa. After feeling the stress of the masses, we collaborated on a project and wrote a book, Journey Well, You Are MORE Than Enough: (RE)Discover Your Passion, Purpose, & Love of Yourself & Life. While doing research for the book, I became reacquainted with old familiar tools such as Louise Hay’s mirror work, gratitude journaling, and other forms of self-care.”

—Mariah Edgington, author, Iowa City, IA 

“I do not regret the things I’ve done, but those I did not do.”

This quote was said by the character Lucas, played by Rory Cochrane, in the movie Empire Records. It is my favorite quote of all time. As soon as I heard it in the nineties, it became my mantra and it has inspired me to live a life full of adventure.”

—Blair Kaplan Venables, thought leader, Kamloops, B.C., Canada

“When life gives you a thousand reasons to break down, believe in yourself, and find a million reasons to smile”.

“Uncertainties and challenges come into all of our lives. I love this quote because even when there are multiple reasons to give up on your valuable mission, you should find a purpose and stick to it. When you provide value, you become valuable to an organization. Do not get doomed over failures, instead persevere by accepting them as stepping stones and move ahead towards a successful life. Using our time efficiently along with skills and abilities can make us successful and happy.”

—Archana, psychotherapist and counselor

“I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really: Get busy living, or get busy dying.” 

“​​This quote from Shawshank Redemption has always been a favorite of mine because it speaks to the simplicity of choice. We get to choose how we want to write the story of our life, either filled with great adventure or a diminished life that is less than we deserve.”

—Franka Baly, creative director, Tomball, TX

“Boundaries are the distance at which I can love me and you simultaneously.”

“This Prentis Hemphill quote has been so useful to my physician clients who struggle with the self-inflicted expectation of doing everything, for everyone, at all times. We are perfectionists and feel it is our responsibility to assure our patients are getting the care they deserve. It is difficult to set boundaries in this setting and it is necessary to rely on our teams to round out our care by filling in the details that they can provide. At home we can enlist help too. We need to make sure to set boundaries on our work, so there is something left of us to love.”

—Dawn Ellison, MD, professional coach, MN

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