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50 Wise Quotes To Motivate Everyone

50 Wise Quotes To Motivate Everyone

Quotes can be filled with knowledge and wisdom. They can inspire passion and motivation in almost anyone. Here are 50 of the most inspirational and motivational quotes about life, work, friendship, and love — check them out.

  1. “I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse.” — Florence Nightingale
  2. “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” — Wayne Gretzky
  3. “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” — Michael Jordan
  4. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover.” — Mark Twain
  5. “Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.” — Charles Swindoll
  6. “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” — Alice Walker
  7. “I would rather die of passion than of boredom.” — Vincent van Gogh

  8. “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” — Dr. Seuss
  9. “The more you talk about negative things in your life, the more you call them in. Speak victory not defeat.” — Joel Osteen
  10. “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” — Albert Einstein
  11. “The mind is everything. What you think, you become.” — Buddha
  12. “Eighty percent of success is showing up.” — Woody Allen

  13. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” — Steve Jobs
  14. “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” — Ayn Rand
  15. “Life isn’t about getting and having, it’s about giving and being.” — Kevin Kruse
  16. “We become what we think about.” — Earl Nightingale
  17. “Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.” — Les Brown
  18. “If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” — Booker T. Washington
  19. “Limitations live only in our minds. But, if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless.” — Jamie Paolinetti
  20. “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” — George Addair
  21. “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” — Arthur Ashe

  22. “Fall seven times and stand up eight.” — Japanese Proverb
  23. “When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.” — Helen Keller
  24. “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” – Anne Frank
  25. “When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” — Lao Tzu
  26. “If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on.” — Sheryl Sandberg
  27. “I didn’t fail the test. I just found 100 ways to do it wrong.” — Benjamin Franklin
  28.  “Vision without execution is just hallucination.” — Henry Ford

  29. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
  30. “The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.” — Bruce Lee
  31. “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” — Michael Jordan
  32. “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” — Henry Ford
  33. “Never say anything about yourself you do not want to come true.” —Brian Tracy
  34. “Don’t count the days. Make the days count.” — Muhammad Ali
  35. “If you look at what you have in life, you’ll always have more. If you look at what you don’t have in life, you’ll never have enough.” — Oprah Winfrey
  36. “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” — Maya Angelou
  37. “Dream big and dare to fail.” — Norman Vaughan

  38. “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.” — Tony Robbins
  39. “It’s your place in the world; it’s your life. Go on and do all you can with it, and make it the life you want to live.” — Mae Jemison
  40. “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say, I used everything you gave me.” — Erma Bombeck
  41. “It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” —Abraham Lincoln

  42. “I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” — Stephen Covey
  43. “Either you run the day, or the day runs you.” — Jim Rohn
  44. “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” — Henry Ford
  45. “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” — Mark Twain
  46. “There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” — Aristotle
  47. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  48. “Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.” — Gloria Steinem

  49. “You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.” — Beverly Sills
  50. “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” — Benjamin Franklin

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Amy Johnson

Amy is a writer who blogs about relationships and lifestyle advice.

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Last Updated on May 22, 2020

What Makes a Good Leader: 9 Critical Leadership Qualities

What Makes a Good Leader: 9 Critical Leadership Qualities

The word “leader” makes you think of people in charge, high-ranking people: your boss, politicians, presidents, CEOs…

But leadership really isn’t about a particular position or a person’s seniority. Just because someone has worked for many years doesn’t mean s/he has gained the qualities and skills to lead a team.

Getting promoted to a managerial position doesn’t automatically turn you into a leader either. CEOs and other high-ranking officials don’t always have great leadership skills.

So what makes a good leader? What are the characteristics of a leader?

Good leadership is about acquiring and honing specific skills. Leadership skills enable you to be a role model for a team in any environment. With great leadership qualities, successful leaders come in all shapes and sizes: in the home, at school, or in the workplace.

The following are some of the many characteristics great leaders exhibit.

1. A Positive Attitude

Great leaders know that they won’t have a happy and motivated team unless they themselves exhibit a positive attitude. This can be done by remaining positive when things go wrong and by creating a relaxed and happy atmosphere in the workplace.

Even some simple things like providing snacks or organizing a team Happy Hour can make a world of difference. An added perk is that team members are likely to work harder and do overtime when needed if they’re happy and appreciated.

Even in the worst situations, such as experiencing low team morale or team members having made a big mistake at work, a great leader stays positive and figures out ways to keep the team motivated to solve the problems.

Walt Disney had his share of hardships and challenges, and like any great leader, he managed to stay positive and find new opportunities. In 1928, Disney found that his film producer, Charles Mintz, wanted to reduce his payments for the Oswald series. Mintz threatened to cut ties entirely if Disney didn’t accept his terms, and Disney chose to part ways. But in leaving Oswald, Disney decided to create something new: the iconic Mickey Mouse[1].

The key is to break down huge challenges into smaller ones and find ways to tackle them one by one.

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Think about the lessons you can learn from the mistake and jot them down because sometimes you win, and sometimes you learn.

2. Confidence

All great leaders have to exhibit an air of confidence if they’re going to succeed. Please don’t confuse this with self-satisfaction and arrogance. You want people to look up to you for inspiration, not so they can punch you in the face.

Confidence is important because people will be looking to you on how to behave, particularly if things aren’t going 100% right. If you remain calm and poised, team members are far more likely to as well. As a result, morale and productivity will remain high, and the problem will be solved more quickly.

If you panic and give up, they will know immediately and things will simply go downhill from there.

Elon Musk is a great example of a leader with confidence. He truly believes that Tesla will be successful, which he has shown many times through his actions. He converted 532,000 stock options at $6.63 each, their value on Dec. 4, 2009, before Tesla went public. It was a hefty bargain considering Tesla’s stock price stood at around $195 per share at that time. He doesn’t apologize for his beliefs and has drawn fire from just about everyone for his political actions.

You can’t instantly become a very confident person, but all the small things you do every day will gradually make you more confident:

  • List 5 things you like about yourself every day (something different every day), and you’ll appreciate yourself more.
  • Work on your strengths and do your best to enhance them.

3. A Sense of Humor

It’s imperative for any kind of leader to have a sense of humor, particularly when things go wrong. And they will.

Your team members are going to be looking to you for how to react in a seemingly dire situation. It would probably be best if you weren’t stringing up a noose for yourself in the corner. You need to be able to laugh things off because if staff morale goes down, so will productivity.

Establish this environment prior to any kind of meltdown by encouraging humor and personal discussions in the workplace.

As a president, Barack Obama exuded confidence and calm during stressful situations. But he was also known for his “dad jokes,”[2] his genuinely funny speeches at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, and appearing on Zack Galifianakis’s Between Two Ferns.[3] Obama’s sense of humor made him grounded, realistic, and honest, which no doubt helped during some tense moments in the White House!

Learn to laugh at yourself. Confident people laugh about their own silly mistakes, and when you do this, others will also trust you more because you’re willing to share your experiences.

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Be observant and learn from the jokes others make. You can also get a lot of inspiration from the internet.

4. Ability to Embrace Failure

No matter how hard you try to avoid it, failures will happen; that’s okay. You just need to know how to deal with them.

Great leaders take them in strides. They remain calm and logically think through the situation and utilize their resources. What they don’t do is fall apart and reveal to their team how worried they are, which leads to negative morale, fear, and binge-drinking under desks.

Great leaders do, in fact, lead, even when they’re faced with setbacks.

Henry Ford experienced a major setback after designing and improving the Ford Quadricycle. He founded the Detroit Automobile Company in 1899, but the resulting cars they produced did not live up to his standards and were too expensive. The company dissolved in 1901. Ford took this in stride and formed the Henry Ford Company. The sales were slow and the company had financial problems; it wasn’t until 1903 that the Ford Motor Company was successful and put the Ford on the map.

Get to the root cause of any problem so you can prevent it from happening again and learn from the mistake.

By asking “why” 5 times (or more) on why something happened, you can find out the key factor that caused the problem and can find the best solution to tackle the problem.

You’ll also learn how to prevent this from happening again in the future after finding out a problem’s root cause.

5. Careful Listening and Feedback

This is far more complex than it actually sounds. Good communication skills are essential for a great leader. You may very well understand the cave of crazy that is your brain, but that doesn’t mean that you can adequately take the ideas out of it and explain them to someone else.

The best leaders need to be able to communicate clearly with the people around them. They also need to be able to interpret other people properly and not take what they say personally.

The Dalai Lama, as a symbol of the unification of the state of Tibet, represents and practices Buddhist values. The Dalai Lama’s leadership is benevolent and aims toward truth and understanding, alongside the other Buddhist precepts. This is a great example for all leaders: if you want to give good directions to others, you have to get feedback from others to understand the situation properly.

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Encourage communication between team members and establish an open door policy.

Practice not interrupting team members when they’re talking. Instead, summarize what they say and ask for feedback after you have talked about your ideas.

6. Knowing How and When to Delegate

No matter how much you might want to, you can’t actually do everything yourself. Even if you could, in a team environment that would be a terrible idea anyway.

Good leaders recognize that delegation does more than simply alleviate their own stress levels (although that’s obviously a nice perk). Delegating to others shows that you have confidence in their abilities, which subsequently results in higher morale in the workplace, as well as loyalty from your staff. They want to feel appreciated and trusted.

Although Steve Jobs was known for focusing in on the smallest of details, he knew how to delegate. By finding, cultivating, and trusting capable team members, Jobs was able to make Apple run smoothly, even when he had to be absent for extended periods of time.

To know when and how to delegate work to team members, you have to be very familiar with each of them:

  • List out all of their strengths, weaknesses, and personalities.
  • Talk with your team members more to know about their passion and interests.

Take a look at this guide and learn more about delegation: How to Delegate Work Effectively (The Definitive Guide for Leaders)

7. Growth Mindset

Any good leader knows how important it is to develop the skills of those around them. The best can recognize those skills early on. Not only will development make work easier as they improve and grow, it will also foster morale. In addition, they may develop some skills that you don’t possess that will be beneficial to the workplace.

Great leaders share their knowledge with the team and give them the opportunity to achieve. This is how leaders gain their respect and loyalty.

Pope Francis has been unusually popular with many Catholics and many non-Catholics. His position isn’t totally traditional, which is part of his appeal, but he also has admirable leadership skills. Pope Francis’s TED talk[4] drew attention because he encouraged leaders to be humble and to demonstrate solidarity with others. This inclusive, kind, and respectful style of leadership is incredibly important for any situation.

It’s important to spend time talking with other team members individually to understand them.

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Find out team members’ current challenges and try to give feedback and encouragement so they will grow and do better.

8. Responsibility

Great leaders know that when it comes to their company, work place or whatever situation they’re in, they need to take personal responsibility for failure. How can they expect employees to hold themselves accountable if they themselves don’t?

The best leaders don’t make excuses; they take the blame and then work out how to fix the problem as soon as possible. This proves that they’re trustworthy and possess integrity.

Howard Gillman is the chancellor of UC Irvine. You might have heard of how the university rescinded a bunch of acceptances, and then changed its mind[5], This past spring, an unusually high number of accepted students decided to matriculate; the school initially responded by rescinding offers over things like missed deadlines. But the college realized this was a mistake and reversed its decision. Gillman and the university accepted responsibility and decided to move past their earlier bad decision.

Always ask yourself what you can do better or what you should change. Take responsibility and think about what you can do better to prevent this from happening next time.

9. A Desire to Learn

It’s safe to say that all great leaders will have to enter unchartered waters at some point during their career. Because of this, they have to be able to trust their intuition and draw on past experiences to guide them.

Great leaders know that there’s always something to learn from everything they have experienced before. They are able to connect the present challenges with the lessons learned in the past to make decisions and take actions promptly.

You can either recall what you’ve learned from your memories or search your notes (ideally, a software that you can access anywhere with things well-organized).

Warren Buffett, one of the richest people in the world, has mostly made the right calls. But in dealing with huge amounts of money, Buffett has also made several multi-million (and sometimes multi-billion) dollar mistakes. He has stated that buying the company Berkshire Hathaway was his biggest mistake[6]. From that poor choice, he realized that it was unwise to pursue “improvements” and “expansions” in the existing textile industry. Despite mistakes like this, Buffett has invested wisely, and it shows.

To effectively learn from the past, write down lessons you’ve learned from any mistakes you’ve made. Have all the lessons well organized, and when similar things happen again in future, take these lessons as references.

The Bottom Line

Leadership traits are learnable. If you practice consistently, you can be a great leader, too.

Make small changes to your habits when you work with your team, wherever that may be. Most of us aren’t presidents or CEOs, but we all work with other people, and our actions always impact others. This gives every person the chance to develop leadership skills and to stand out from the crowd.

More Tips on Leadership

Featured photo credit: Markus Spiske via unsplash.com

Reference

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