Over 40 years ago I fell in love with inspiring words. The first I remember came from my dad. He began teaching me about pivot points and the art of chess when I was only six years old as he repeated a single phrase over and over again:
One single move can change the momentum of the game.
These words became my mantra and my directive to keep moving forward and daring greatly when everything seemed hopeless.
As leaders, it’s our job to inspire other to dare greatly. Here are 50 of my favorite quotes you can keep in your inspiration toolbox.
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It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. —Theodore Roosevelt
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Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. —Harriet Tubman
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All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them. —Walt Disney
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All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible. — T.E. Lawrence
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To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe. — Anatole France
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You have to have a dream so you can get up in the morning.
— Billy Wilder
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He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.
— Muhammad Ali
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Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen. — Winston Churchill
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Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.
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I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.
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It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends. —J. K. Rowling
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One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest. — Maya Angelou
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Had I waited for confidence and competence to pursue my dream, I would still be waiting. Every move I took started with my God-given potential. Confidence and competence followed. —Maria Keckler
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Let us not pray to be sheltered from dangers but to be fearless when facing them.
— Rabindranath Tagore
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Courage is being scared to death… and saddling up anyway. —John Wayne
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Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened. —Billy Graham
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Success is never final, failure is never fatal. It’s courage that counts. —John Wooden
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Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies. —Mother Teresa
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Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you. —Saint Augustine
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We are twice armed if we fight with faith. — Plato
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I am still far from being what I want to be, but with God’s help I shall succeed.
—Vincent Van Gogh
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Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle. —Napoleon Hill
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Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.
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You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.
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It’s not the events of our lives that shape us, but our beliefs as to what those events mean.
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If you create incredible value and information for others that can change their lives – and you always stay focused on that service – the financial success will follow.
— Brendon Burchard
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The reason I’ve been able to be so financially successful is my focus has never, ever for one minute been money. — Oprah Winfrey
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Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don’t need to escape from. — Seth Godin
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Perfectionism is the mother of procrastination. — Michael Hyatt
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The future isn’t just a place you’ll go. It’s a place you will invent. — Nancy Duarte
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The key to success is to develop both a compassionate and an intelligent mind.
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The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today. — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
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Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit. —Aristotle
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Do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day. — Jesus
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There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure. — Colin Powell
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What I’ve learned is that if you really want to be successful at something, you’ll find that you put the time in. You won’t just ask somebody if it’s a good idea, you’ll go figure out if it’s a good idea. — Mark Cuban
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Don’t you dare underestimate the power of your own instinct.
— Barbara Corcoran
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The “how” is simple if you know the “why.” —Maria Keckler
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Change your thoughts and you change your world. —Norman Vincent Peale