The Most Inspirational Women Quotes

Inspirational Women Quotes

Inspirational women quotes inspire and empower us. From these quotes of inspirational women, you may find your favorite that will motivate you, just as they do for others.

Inspirational women’s quotes are inspirational and empowering, because these quotes raise the spirits, buoy us up, give us a boost, lift our spirits. We become motivated, therefore, enabling us to pursue our goals with gallantry in life too. They cheer us on with their words of wisdom.

We learn from their courage, their accomplishments.

These are some of the most inspirational women in history with such awe-inspiring deeds of their life stories.

Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart Inspirational Women In History

“Ours is the commencement of a flying age, and I am happy to have popped into existence at a period so interesting.”

“Flying may not be all plain sailing, but the fun of it is worth the price.”

“The more one does and sees and feels, the more one is able to do, and the more genuine may be one’s appreciation of fundamental things like home, and love, and understanding companionship.”

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act. The rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life and the procedure. The process is its own reward.”

“Anticipation, I suppose, sometimes exceeds realization.”

“…decide…whether or not the goal is worth the risks involved. If it is, stop worrying….”

“Preparation, I have often said, is rightly two-thirds of any venture.”

“Courage is the price that
Life exacts for granting peace.
The soul that knows it not, knows no release
From little things:
Knows not the livid loneliness of fear,
Nor mountain heights where bitter joy can hear
The sound of wings.”

“My ambition is to have this wonderful gift produce practical results for the future of commercial flying and for the women who may want to fly tomorrow’s planes.”

“After midnight, the moon set, and I was alone with the stars. I have often said that the lure of flying is the lure of beauty, and I need no other flight to convince me that the reason fliers fly, whether they know it or not, is the aesthetic appeal of flying.”

“The stars seemed near enough to touch and never before have I seen so many. I always believed the lure of flying is the lure of beauty, but I was sure of it that night.”

“Adventure is worthwhile in itself.”

“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.”

Anne Frank

Anne Frank Inspirational Women In History

“I want to go on living even after my death! And that’s why I’m so grateful to God for having given me this gift, which I can use to develop myself and to express all that’s inside me!”

“Ik wil nog voortleven ook na mijn dood! En daarom ben ik God zo dankbaar, dat hij me bij mijn geboorte al een mogelijkheid heeft meegegeven om me te ontwikkelen en om te schrijven, dus om uit te drukken alles wat in me is.”

“I have often been downcast, but never in despair; I regard our hiding as a dangerous adventure, romantic and interesting at the same time. In my diary I treat all the privations as amusing. I have made up my mind now to lead a different life from other girls and, later on, different from ordinary housewives. My start has been so very full of interest, and that is the sole reason why I have to laugh at the humorous side of the most dangerous moments.”

“Ik ben vaak neerslachtig geweest, maar nooit wanhopig, ik beschouw dit onderduiken als een gevaarlijk avontuur, dat romantisch en interessant is. Ik beschouw elke ontbering als een amusement in mijn dagboek. Ik heb me nu eenmaal voorgenomen, dat ik een ander leven zal leiden dan andere meisjes en later een ander leven dan gewone huisvrouwen. Dit is het goede begin van het interessante en daarom, daarom alleen moet ik in de meest gevaarlijke ogenblikken lachen om het humoristische van de situatie.”

Coco Chanel

Fashion Designer Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel, 1920. Author: Time / Getty
Fashion Designer Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, 1920. Author: Time / Getty

“How many cares one loses when one decides not to be something, but to be someone.”

“Fashion is architecture.”

“In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.”

“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.”

“Success is often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.”

“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”

“The best color in the whole world is the one that looks good on you.”

Edith Cavell

Edith Cavell Inspirational Women In History

“They have all been very kind to me here. But this I would say, standing as I do in view of God and eternity, I realize that patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness for anyone.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt Inspirational Women In History

“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.”

“We have to face the fact that either all of us are going to die together or we are going to learn to live together and if we are to live together we have to talk.”

“To me who dreamed so much as a child, who made a dreamworld in which I was the heroine of an unending story, the lives of people around me continued to have a certain storybook quality. I learned something which has stood me in good stead many times — The most important thing in any relationship is not what you get but what you give.”

“Life was meant to be lived, and curiosity must be kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life.”

“With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.”

“When you cease to make a contribution, you begin to die.”

“You get more joy out of the giving to others, and should put a good deal of thought into the happiness you are able to give.”

“The most important thing in any relationship is not what you get but what you give.”

“The purpose of life…is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

“One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes. In stopping to think through the meaning of what I have learned, there is much that I believe intensely, much I am unsure of. In the long run, we shape our lives and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And, the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”

“One thing life has taught me: if you are interested, you never have to look for new interests. They come to you. … All you need to do is to be curious, receptive, eager for experience. And there’s one strange thing: when you are genuinely interested in one thing, it will always lead to something else.”

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.”

“A mature person is one who does not think only in absolutes, who is able to be objective even when deeply stirred emotionally, who has learned that there is both good and bad in all people and all things, and who walks humbly and deals charitably with the circumstances of life, knowing that in this world no one is all-knowing and therefore all of us need both love and charity.”

“Happiness is not a goal, it is a by-product.”

“No writing has any real value which is not the expression of genuine thought and feeling.”

“One should always sleep in all of one’s guest beds, to make sure that they are comfortable.”

“Long ago, I made up my mind that when things were said involving only me, I would pay no attention to them, except when valid criticism was carried by which I could profit.”

“One of the blessings of age is to learn not to part on a note of sharpness, to treasure the moments spent with those we love, and to make them whenever possible good to remember, for time is short.”

“I have never felt that anything really mattered but the satisfaction of knowing that you stood for the things in which you believed and had done the very best you could.”

“This is a time for action — not for war, but for mobilization of every bit of peace machinery.”

“The arts in every field — music, drama, sculpture, painting — we can learn to appreciate and enjoy. We need not be artists, but we should be able to appreciate the work of artists.”

“If man is to be liberated to enjoy more leisure, he must also be prepared to enjoy this leisure fully and creatively.”

“We should begin in our own environment and in our own community as far as possible to build a peace-loving attitude and learn to discipline ourselves to accept, in the small things of our lives, mediation and arbitration.”

“We face the future fortified with the lessons we have learned from the past. It is today that we must create the world of the future. Spinoza, I think, pointed out that we ourselves can make experience valuable when, by imagination and reason, we turn it into foresight.”

“What we must learn to do is to create unbreakable bonds between the sciences and the humanities. We cannot procrastinate. The world of the future is in our making. Tomorrow is now.”

“Example is the best lesson there is.”

Emmeline Pankhurst

Emmeline Pankhurst Inspirational Women In History
Emmeline Pankhurst, c. 1913

“We are here, not because we are law-breakers; we are here in our efforts to become law-makers.”

Florence Nightingale

Florence Nightingale Inspirational Women In History

“You ask me why I do not write something… I think one’s feelings waste themselves in words; they ought all to be distilled into actions and into actions which bring results.”

“I never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning, however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard-seed germinates and roots itself.”

“Poetry and imagination begin life. A child will fall on its knees on the gravel walk at the sight of a pink hawthorn in full flower, when it is by itself, to praise God for it.”

“Prayer,” says a mystic of the 16th century, “is to ask not what we wish of God, but what God wishes of us.”

“Let each person tell the truth from his own experience.”

“I attribute my success to this – I never gave or took any excuse.”

Gabrielle Giffords

Gabrielle Giffords Inspirational Women In History

“Our country must be strong enough to solve problems, and that means we must learn how to work together again.”

“My position is to listen to my constituents, learn from the best information available and ultimately make sound, rational decisions that are going to be beneficial to the people…”

“But the safety of the world, in some sense, depends on your saying “no” to inhumane ideas. Standing up for one’s own integrity makes you no friends. It is costly. Yet defiance of the mob, in the service of that which is right, is one of the highest expressions of courage I know.”

George Eliot – Mary Ann Evans

George Eliot Inspirational Women In History
Portrait of George Eliot by Samuel Laurence

“My own experience and development deepen everyday my conviction that our moral progress may be measured by the degree in which we sympathize with individual suffering and individual joy.”

“I like not only to be loved, but also to be told that I am loved. I am not sure that you are of the same kind. But the realm of silence is large enough beyond the grave. This is the world of light and speech, and I shall take leave to tell you that you are very dear.”

“Blessed is the man who, having nothing to say, abstains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact.”

“The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us, and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone.”

“Blessed is the influence of one true, loving human soul on another.”

“The blessed work of helping the world forward, happily does not wait to be done by perfect men.”

“Our dead are never dead to us until we have forgotten them.”

“Deep, unspeakable suffering may well be called a baptism, a regeneration, the initiation into a new state.”

“Our deeds determine us, as much as we determine our deeds.”

“One can say everything best over a meal.”

“Human feeling is like the mighty rivers that bless the earth: it does not wait for beauty — it flows with resistless force and brings beauty with it.”

“What greater thing is there for two human souls, than to feel that they are joined for life — to strengthen each other in all labour, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in all pain, to be one with each other in silent unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting?”

“I think I should have no other mortal wants, if I could always have plenty of music. It seems to infuse strength into my limbs, and ideas into my brain. Life seems to go on without effort, when I am filled with music.”

“We could never have loved the earth so well if we had had no childhood in it.”

“High achievements demand some other unusual qualification besides an unusual desire for high prizes.”

“One gets a bad habit of being unhappy.”

“In old days there were angels who came and took men by the hand and led them away from the city of destruction. We see no white-winged angels now. But yet men are led away from threatening destruction: a hand is put into theirs, which leads them forth gently towards a calm and bright land, so that they look no more backward; and the hand may be a little child’s.”

“There is no creature whose inward being is so strong that it is not greatly determined by what lies outside it.”

“I say that the strongest principle of growth lies in human choice.”

“Give me no light, great heaven, but such as turns
To energy of human fellowship;
No powers save the growing heritage
That makes complete manhood.”

Grace Hopper

Grace Murray Hopper, in her office in Washington DC, 1978, ©Lynn Gilbert
Grace Murray Hopper, in her office in Washington DC, 1978, ©Lynn Gilbert

“It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission.”

“I’ve always been more interested in the future than in the past.”

“I’ve received many honors and I’m grateful for them; but I’ve already received the highest award I’ll ever receive, and that has been the privilege and honor of serving very proudly in the United States Navy.”

“[The Computer] was the first machine man built that assisted the power of his brain instead of the strength of his arm.”

“Humans are allergic to change. They love to say, “We’ve always done it this way.” I try to fight that. That’s why I have a clock on my wall that runs counter-clockwise.”

“We’re flooding people with information. We need to feed it through a processor. A human must turn information into intelligence or knowledge. We’ve tended to forget that no computer will ever ask a new question.”

“From then on, when anything went wrong with a computer, we said it had bugs in it.”

Helen Keller

Helen Keller Inspirational Women In History
Helen Keller portrait, 1904

“One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar.”

“We differ, blind and seeing, one from another, not in our senses, but in the use we make of them, in the imagination and courage with which we seek wisdom beyond the senses.”

“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 which has been opened for us.”

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”

“Believe, when you are most unhappy, that there is something for you to do in the world. So long as you can sweeten another’s pain, life is not in vain.”

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope.”

Indira Gandhi

Jacqueline Kennedy and Indira Gandhi Inspirational Women In History
Mrs. Jacqueline Kennedy and Indira Gandhi in New Delhi, India.

“A nation’s strength ultimately consists in what it can do on its own, and not in what it can borrow from others.”

“India wants to avoid a war at all costs but it is not a one-sided affair, you cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.”

“You must learn to be still in the midst of activity and to be vibrantly alive in repose.”

Irena Sendler

Irena Sendlerowa Inspirational Women In History

“I was brought up to believe that a person must be rescued when drowning, regardless of religion and nationality.”

“Every child saved with my help and the help of all the wonderful secret messengers, who today are no longer living, is the justification of my existence on this earth, and not a title to glory.”

Jane Austen

Jane Austen Inspirational Women In History
Portrait of Jane Austen in watercolor and pencil

“To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love.”

“There are people who the more you do for them, the less they will do for themselves.”

Jane Goodall

Jane Goodall Inspirational Women In History

“Only if we understand can we care. Only if we care will we help. Only if we help shall they be saved.”

“But let us not forget that human love and compassion are equally deeply rooted in our primate heritage, and in this sphere too our sensibilities are of a higher order of magnitude than those of chimpanzees.”

“Lasting change is a series of compromises. And compromise is alright, as long your values don’t change.”

“The long hours spent with them in the forest have enriched my life beyond measure. What I have learned from them has shaped my understanding of human behavior, of our place in nature.”

“Especially now when views are becoming more polarized, we must work to understand each other across political, religious and national boundaries.”

“The most important thing is to actually think about what you do. To become aware and actually think about the effect of what you do on the environment and on society. That’s key, and that underlies everything else.”

“I do not want to discuss evolution in such depth, however, only touch on it from my own perspective: from the moment when I stood on the Serengeti plains holding the fossilized bones of ancient creatures in my hands to the moment when, staring into the eyes of a chimpanzee, I saw a thinking, reasoning personality looking back. You may not believe in evolution, and that is all right. How we humans came to be the way we are is far less important than how we should act now to get out of the mess we have made for ourselves.”

“My mission is to create a world where we can live in harmony with nature. And can I do that alone? No. So there is a whole army of youth that can do it. So I suppose my mission is to reach as many of those young people as I can through my own efforts.”

“So this is my effort to bring back the hope that we must have if we are to change direction. . . . I think to be fully human, we need to have meaning in our lives, and that’s what I am trying to help these young people to find.”


J.K. Rowling Inspirational Women In History

“The world is full of wonderful things you haven’t seen yet. Don’t ever give up on the chance of seeing them.”

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.”

“We do not need magic to transform our world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already. We have the power to imagine better.”

Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc Inspirational Women In History

“I was thirteen when I had a Voice from God for my help and guidance.”

Mae Jemison

Mae Jemison Inspirational Women In History

“The difference between science and the arts is not that they are different sides of the same coin, even, or even different parts of the same continuum, but rather, they’re manifestations of the same thing…They spring from the same source. The arts and sciences are avatars of human creativity. It’s our attempt as humans to build an understanding of the universe, the world around us. It’s our attempt to influence things, the universe internal to ourselves and external to us.”

“Once I got into space, I was feeling very comfortable in the universe. I felt like I had a right to be anywhere in this universe, that I belonged here as much as any speck of stardust, any comet, any planet.”

“Never be limited by other people’s limited imaginations… If you adopt their attitudes, then the possibility won’t exist because you’ll have already shut it out… You can hear other people’s wisdom, but you’ve got to re-evaluate the world for yourself.”

Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafza Inspirational Women In History
Yousafzai at Women of the World Festival, 2014 Author Southbank Centre

“One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.”

“Education is one of the blessings of life — and one of its necessities.”

“Dear sisters and brothers, we realize the importance of light when we see darkness. We realize the importance of our voice when we are silenced.”

“The content of a book holds the power of education and it is with this power that we can shape our future and change lives.”

Margaret Thatcher

Margaret Thatcher Inspirational Women In History
Margaret Thatcher at the Council Author: Lauren at the Council

“I place a profound belief—indeed a fervent faith—in the virtues of self reliance and personal independence.”

“Personal freedom and economic freedom are indivisible. You can’t have one without the other. You can’t lose one without losing the other.”

“Which is the one most likely to get results? The one who says, come on you can do it. That’s me.”

“The nation is but an enlarged family.”

“This is the road I am resolved to follow. This is the path I must go. I ask all who have the spirit—the bold, the steadfast and the young in heart—to stand and join with me as we go forward.”

“I came to office with one deliberate intent: to change Britain from a dependent to a self-reliant society – from a give-it-to-me, to a do-it-yourself nation. A get-up-and-go, instead of a sit-back-and-wait-for-it Britain.”

“For us, it is not who you are, who your family is or where you come from that matters. It is what you are and what you can do for our country that counts. That is our vision.”

“This didn’t come about because of consensus. It happened because we said: this we believe, this we will do. It’s called leadership.”

“A man may climb Everest for himself, but at the summit he plants his country’s flag.”

“You know, if you just set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything, wouldn’t you, at any time? And you would achieve nothing!”

“I am still at the crease, though the bowling has been pretty hostile of late. And in case anyone doubted it, can I assure you there will be no ducking the bouncers, no stonewalling, no playing for time. The bowling’s going to get hit all round the ground. That is my style.”

“When people are free to choose, they choose freedom.”

“Clear. Decisive. Purposeful.” When asked how she would describe her leadership style.

“Everyone had something unique to offer in life and their responsibility was to develop those gifts – and heroes come from all backgrounds.”

“The greatest resource of all is Man.”

Marie Curie

Marie Curie Inspirational Women In History

“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained.”

“La vie n’est facile pour aucun de nous. Mais quoi, il faut avoir de la persévérance, et surtout de la confiance en soi. Il faut croire que l’on est doué pour quelque chose, et que, cette chose, il faut l’atteindre coûte que coûte.”

“I am among those who think that science has great beauty.”

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou Inspirational Women In History
Maya Angelou reciting her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at President Bill Clinton’s inauguration in 1993

“Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage.”

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

“I have a feeling that I make a very good friend, and I’m a good mother, and a good sister, and a good citizen. I am involved in life itself – all of it. And I have a lot of energy and a lot of nerve.”

“We can learn to see each other and see ourselves in each other and recognize that human beings are more alike than we are unalike.”

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”

“While I know myself as a creation of God, I am also obligated to realize and remember that everyone else and everything else are also God’s creation.”

“Nothing will work unless you do.”

“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.”

“I know that when I pray, something wonderful happens. Not just to the person or persons for whom I’m praying, but also something wonderful happens to me. I’m grateful that I’m heard.”

“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.”

“You can’t forgive without loving. And I don’t mean sentimentality. I don’t mean mush. I mean having enough courage to stand up and say, ‘I forgive. I’m finished with it.’”

“Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.”

“We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.”

“I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.”

“You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot – it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.”

“All great artists draw from the same resource: the human heart, which tells us that we are all more alike than we are unalike.”

“Whatever you want to do, if you want to be great at it, you have to love it and be able to make sacrifices for it.”

“The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.”

“During bad circumstances, which is the human inheritance, you must decide not to be reduced. You have your humanity, and you must not allow anything to reduce that. We are obliged to know we are global citizens. Disasters remind us we are world citizens, whether we like it or not.”

“I’m working at trying to be a Christian, and that’s serious business. It’s like trying to be a good Jew, a good Muslim, a good Buddhist, a good Shintoist, a good Zoroastrian, a good friend, a good lover, a good mother, a good buddy – it’s serious business.”

“If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.”

Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa Inspirational Women In History

“Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.”

Spread love everywhere you go; first of all in your house. Give love to your children, to your wife or husband, to a next door neighbor. Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.”

“We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But if the drop was not in the ocean, I think the ocean would be less because of the missing drop.”

“Don’t look for big things, just do small things with great love….The smaller the thing, the greater must be our love.”

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”

Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks Inspirational Women In History
Photograph of Rosa Parks with Dr. Martin Luther King jr. (ca. 1955)

“I would like to be known as a person who is concerned about freedom and equality and justice and prosperity for all people.”

“I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.”

Rosalind Franklin

Rosalind Franklin Inspirational Women In History
Rosalind Franklin with microscope in 1955. Source From the personal collection of Jenifer Glynn. Author: MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology

“Science and everyday life cannot and should not be separated.”

Wangari Maathai

Wangari Maathai Inspirational Women In History
Nobel Laureate Professor Wangari Maathai with US senator Barack Obama in Nairobi, Kenya

“I don’t really know why I care so much. I just have something inside me that tells me that there is a problem, and I have got to do something about it. I think that is what I would call the God in me. All of us have a God in us, and that God is the spirit that unites all life, everything that is on this planet. It must be this voice that is telling me to do something, and I am sure it’s the same voice that is speaking to everybody on this planet — at least everybody who seems to be concerned about the fate of the world, the fate of this planet.”

“Until you dig a hole, you plant a tree, you water it and make it survive, you haven’t done a thing. You are just talking.”


Everyday reading of inspirational women quotes creates a mindset of invincibility, to scale the mountains in our lives, to conquer. Let us stand on the shoulders of these giants of inspirational women, see more beautiful horizons, and paint our own pictures of life triumphant!

Read more about these most inspirational women in history and their life stories.