101 Motivational Quotes for Students and Learners

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Motivational Quotes for students are like pills for learners to energize their inner being. Just as technology tools are necessary to get by in our daily lives, so are motivational quotes. As a student and a learner, a simple, short sentence can go a long way to brighten your day and ignite a spark in your daily activity when digested subconsciously. A quote can bring that ‘Aha moment’ when the words speak to your soul. That’s about how powerful short quotes can be—words that live longer than the lips that utter them. Technology tools become obsolete at some point, but these words live for ages.

Below is a list of 101 motivational quotes for students and learners. Enjoy and share!

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Table of Contents


  1.       If you believe everything you read, better not read.

Japanese Proverb

  1.       Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled ‘This could change your life’.

Helen Exley

  1.       Wear your learning, like your watch, in a private pocket: and do not pull it out and strike it, merely to show that you have one.

Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield

  1.       He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.

Chinese Proverb

  1.       Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.

Alexander Graham Bell

  1.       Study while others are sleeping; work while others are loafing; prepare while others are playing; and dream while others are wishing.

William Arthur Ward

  1.       Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must.

Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington

  1.       Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is to not stop questioning.

Albert Einstein

  1.       It’s not that I’m so smart; it’s just that I stay with problems longer.

Albert Einstein

  1.     I am often amazed at how much more capability and enthusiasm for science there is among elementary school youngsters than among college students.

Carl Sagan

  1.     Students now arrive at the university ignorant and cynical about our political heritage, lacking the wherewithal to be either inspired by it or seriously critical of it.

Allan Bloom

  1.     No man can teach another self-knowledge. He can only lead him or her up to self-discovery – the source of truth.

Barry Long

  1.     If we make a couple of discoveries here and there we need not believe things will go on like this for ever. Just as we hit water when we dig in the earth, so we discover the incomprehensible sooner or later.

Georg C. Lichtenberg

  1.     Employ your time in improving yourself by other men’s writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for.



  1.     Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

Thomas Jefferson

  1.     Keep steadily before you the fact that all true success depends at last upon yourself.

Theodore T. Hunger

  1.     The surest way not to fail is to determine to succeed.

Richard Brinsley Sheridan

  1.     Success is sweet: the sweeter if long delayed and attained through manifold struggles and defeats.

A. Branson Alcott

  1.     The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will.

Vince Lombardi

  1.     Everyone has a fair turn to be as great as he pleases.

Jeremy Collier

  1.     I cannot give you the formula for success, but I can give you the formula for failure–which is: Try to please everybody.

Herbert Bayard Swope

  1.     To climb steep hills requires a slow pace at first.

William Shakespeare

  1.     Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.

Robert Collier

  1.     The ability to concentrate and to use your time well is everything if you want to succeed in business–or almost anywhere else for that matter.

Lee Iacocca


  1.     It was a high counsel that I once heard given to a young person, “Always do what you are afraid to do.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1.     The most important thing is to keep the most important thing the most important thing.

From the book “Foundation design”, by Coduto, Donald P.

  1.     Nothing’s ever built to last but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth building


  1.     Without inspiration the best powers of the mind remain dormant. There is a fuel in us which needs to be ignited with sparks.

Johann Gottfried Von Herder

  1.     We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.


  1.     You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

Eleanor Roosevelt

  1.     Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.

Albert Einstein

  1.     Believe with all of your heart that you will do what you were made to do.

Orison Swett Marden

  1.     Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

  1.     You cannot dream yourself into a character: you must hammer and forge yourself into one.

Henry D. Thoreau

  1.     The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up.

Paul Valery

  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

  1.     You will never leave where you are, until you decide where you’d rather be.

Dexter Yager

Destination and Confidence

  1.     Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is.

Vince Lombardi

  1.     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

  1.     If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.

Yogi Berra

  1.     Some men give up their designs when they have almost reached the goal; while others, on the contrary, obtain a victory by exerting, at the last moment, more vigorous efforts than before.


  1.     The virtue lies in the struggle, not in the prize.

Richard Monckton Milnes

  1.     To reach a port, we must sail—Sail, not tie at anchor—Sail, not drift.

Franklin Roosevelt

  1.     Our plans miscarry because they have no aim. When a man does not know what harbor he is making for, no wind is the right wind.


  1.     Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.


  1.     Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.

Lanston Hughes

  1.     There are two things to aim at in life; first to get what you want, and after that to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind has achieved the second.

Logan Pearsall Smith

  1.     You will never be the person you can be if pressure, tension, and discipline are taken out of your life.

Dr. James G. Bilkey

  1.     You see things, and you say, “Why?” But I dream things that never were, and I say, “Why not?”

George Bernard Shaw

  1.     Your imagination, my dear fellow, is worth more than you imagine.

Louis Aragon

  1.     Don’t believe what your eyes are telling you. All they show is a limitation. Look with your understanding, find what you already know, and you’ll see the way to fly.

Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Prepare for Future

  1.     To those of you who received honors, awards, and distinctions, I say well done. And to the C students, I say you too can be president of the United States.

George W. Bush

  1.     I have taught my students not to apply rules or mechanical ways of seeing.

Josef Albers

  1.     Be generous with your colleagues and your competitors. When people learn that they do well whenever they work with you, they will be more willing to come to you with opportunities.

Michael Masterson

  1.     When our thousands of Chinese students abroad return home, you will see how China will transform itself.

Deng Xiaoping

  1.     The educational resources provided by a child’s fellow students are more important for his achievement than the resources provided by the school board.

James S. Coleman

  1.     The mission for the day is to encourage students to think beyond traditional career opportunities, prepare for future careers and entrance into the workplace.

Allen Tate

  1.     We need to find; the courage to say ‘NO’ to the things and people that are not serving us if we want to rediscover ourselves and live our lives with authenticity.

Barbara De Angelis

  1.     Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.

St. Francis of Assisi

  1.     My students frequently ask what their next project should be. My advice: immerse yourself in the music you love and you will find what you want to do; you will discover your next project.

Lukas Foss


  1.     If You Can’t Find Anything To Live For Then You Better Find Something To Die For.

A Hewitt

  1.     People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars; and they pass by themselves without wondering.

St. Augustine

  1.     So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains. And we never even know we have the key.

Lyrics from Already Gone, peformed by the Eagles for their 1974 On the Border album

  1.     Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.


  1.     Ninety per cent of the world’s woe comes from people not knowing themselves, their abilities, their frailties, and even their real virtues. Most of us go almost all the way through life as complete strangers to ourselves – so how can we know anyone else?

Sidney J. Harris

  1.     It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.

Edmund Hillary

  1.     We are all inventors, each sailing out on a voyage of discovery, guided each by a private chart, of which there is no duplicate. The world is all gates, all opportunities.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1.     The secret of concentration is the secret of self-discovery. You reach inside yourself to discover your personal resources, and what it takes to match them to the challenge.

Arnold Palmer

  1.     Resolve to be thyself; and know that he, who finds himself, loses his misery.

Matthew Arnold

  1.     To the question of your life you are the answer, and to the problems of your life you are the solution.

Joe Cordare

  1.     All men should strive to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why.

James Thurber

  1.     After all these years, I am still involved in the process of self-discovery. It’s better to explore life and make mistakes than to play it safe. Mistakes are part of the dues one pays for a full life.

Sophia Loren

  1.     What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1.     He who has an opinion of his own, but depends on the opinion and tastes of others, is a slave.

Friedrich G. Klopstock

  1.     If you aren’t sure who you are, you might as well work on who you want to be.

Robert Brault

  1.     Man’s main task in life is to give birth to himself, to become what he potentially is. The most important product of his effort is his own personality.

Erich Fromm

  1.     Your vision will come clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside dreams, who looks inside, awakes.


  1.     You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.

Alan Alda

  1.     The man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life.

Muhammad Ali

  1.     Your distress about life might mean you have been living for the wrong reason, not that you have no reason for living.

Tom O’Connor

  1.     You will recognize your own path when you come upon it, because you will suddenly have all the energy and imagination you will ever need.

Jerry Gillies

Taking Opportunities

  1.     Every person that comes into our life comes for a reason; some come to learn and others come to teach.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

  1.     Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

Thomas Edison

  1.     Put yourself in a state of mind where you say to yourself, ‘Here is an opportunity for me to celebrate like never before, my own power, my own ability to get myself to do whatever is necessary.’

Martin Luther King, Jr.

  1.     Life’s ups and downs provide windows of opportunity to determine your values and goals. Think of using all obstacles as stepping stones to build the life you want.

Marsha Sinetar

  1.     The meeting of preparation with opportunity generates the offspring we call luck.

Anthony Robbins

  1.     When written in Chinese, the word “crisis” is composed of two characters. One represents danger, and the other represents opportunity.

John F. Kennedy

  1.     A pessimist is one who makes difficulties of his opportunities, and an optimist is one who makes opportunities of his difficulties.

Harry Truman

  1.     With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself or treat what has happened as a gift. Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.

Wayne Dyer

  1.     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

  1.     Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, “What’s in it for me?

Brian Tracy

  1.     Most successful men have not achieved their distinction by having some new talent or opportunity presented to them. They have developed the opportunity that was at hand.

Dale Carnegie

  1.     If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.

Milton Berle

  1.     The golden opportunity you are seeking is not in your environment, not in luck or chance, not in the help of others. It is in yourself alone.

Orison Swett Marden

  1.     It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

Charles Darwin

  1.     It is no disgrace to start all over; it is usually an opportunity.

George M. Adams

Achieving Great Things

  1.     Even a mistake may turn out to be the one thing necessary to a worthwhile achievement.

Henry Ford

  1.     Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation.

Robert H. Schuller

  1.     I claim to be an average man of less than average ability. I have not the shadow of a doubt that any man or woman can achieve what I have, if he or she would make the same effort and cultivate the same hope and faith.

Mahatma Gandhi

  1.   Achievement seems to be connected with action. Successful men and women keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.

Conrad Hilton

  1.   The best job goes to the person who can get it done without passing the buck or coming back with excuses.

Napolean Hill


  1.       All that a man achieves and all that he fails to achieve is the direct result of his own thoughts.

James Allen

  1.       Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.

Robert Francis Kennedy

  1.       He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would accomplish much must sacrifice much.

James Allen

  1.       Winners compare their achievements with their goals, while losers compare their achievements with those of other people.

Nido Qubein

  1.       The major value in life is not what you get. The major value in life is what you become.

Jim Rohn

  1.       Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.

Dale Carnegie

  1.       Someone has defined genius as intensity of purpose; the ability to do; the patience to wait. Put these together and you have genius, and you have achievement.

Leo J. Muir

  1.       It is hard to fail but is worse to have not tried to succeed. In this life, we get nothing save by effort.

Theodore Roosevelt

  1.       I long to accomplish a great and noble task; but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.

Helen Keller

  1.     That some achieve great success, is proof to all that others can achieve it as well.

Abraham Lincoln

  1.     Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.

William Jennings Bryan

  1.     To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1.     You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.

Albert Einstein

  1.     You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.

Zig Ziglar

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