Maya Angelou Famous and Inspirational Quotes About Life & Love

Changing the world is never an easy task. But for Maya Angelou, an inspiring American poet, it’s a different story. In fact, she made a history across the globe, which enables her to change our world for the better. And one thing is for sure: Maya Angelou taught us some inspiring teachings about life through her inspirational poetry, books, and story.

56 Maya Angelou Famous and Inspirational Quotes

So, to help you do better and attain a better future, here we have gathered some of the best Maya Angelou Quotes that will certainly inspire you.

1. “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.” – Maya Angelou

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

3. “Love is like a virus. It can happen to anybody at any time.” – Maya Angelou

4. “If we lose love and self respect for each other, this is how we finally die.” – Maya Angelou

5. “We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.” – Maya Angelou

6. “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.” – Maya Angelou

7. “I have a son, who is my heart. A wonderful young man, daring and loving and strong and kind.” – Maya Angelou

8. “It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody.” – Maya Angelou

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

10. “The thing to do, it seems to me, is to prepare yourself so you can be a rainbow in somebody else’s cloud. Somebody who may not look like you. May not call God the same name you call God – if they call God at all. I may not dance your dances or speak your language. But be a blessing to somebody. That’s what I think.” – Maya Angelou

11. “A wise woman wishes to be no one’s enemy; a wise woman refuses to be anyone’s victim.” – Maya Angelou

12. “Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.” – Maya Angelou

13. “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

14. “My grandmother took me to church on Sunday all day long, every Sunday into the night. Then Monday evening was the missionary meeting. Tuesday evening was usher board meeting. Wednesday evening was prayer meeting. Thursday evening was visit the sick. Friday evening was choir practice. I mean, and at all those gatherings, we sang.” – Maya Angelou

15. “We are braver and wiser because they existed, those strong women and strong men… We are who we are because they were who they were. It’s wise to know where you come from, who called your name.” – Maya Angelou

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” – Maya Angelou

16. “Stand up straight and realize who you are. That you tower over your circumstances. You are a child of God. Stand up straight.” – Maya Angelou

17. “I respect myself and insist upon it from everybody. And because I do it, I then respect everybody, too.” – Maya Angelou

18. “Seek patience and passion in equal amounts. Patience alone will not build the temple. Passion alone will destroy its walls.” – Maya Angelou

19. “I work very hard, and I play very hard. I’m grateful for life. And I live it – I believe life loves the liver of it. I live it.” – Maya Angelou

20. “We need joy as we need air. We need love as we need water. We need each other as we need the earth we share.” – Maya Angelou

21. “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.” – Maya Angelou

22. “A woman in harmony with her spirit is like a river flowing. She goes where she will without pretense and arrives at her destination prepared to be herself and only herself.” – Maya Angelou

23. “Courage – you develop courage by doing small things like just as if you wouldn’t want to pick up a 100-pound weight without preparing yourself.” – Maya Angelou

24. “In all my work, in the movies I write, the lyrics, the poetry, the prose, the essays, I am saying that we may encounter many defeats – maybe it’s imperative that we encounter the defeats – but we are much stronger than we appear to be and maybe much better than we allow ourselves to be.” – Maya Angelou

25. “The idea is to write it so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight to the heart.” – Maya Angelou

26. “You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou

27. “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” – Maya Angelou

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

29. “Without courage we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” – Maya Angelou

30. “If you’re always trying to be normal you will never know how amazing you can be.” – Maya Angelou

31. “Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take but by the moments that take your breath away.” – Maya Angelou

32. “Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in the world, but has not solved one yet.” – Maya Angelou

33. “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.” – Maya Angelou

34. “Courage – you develop courage by doing small things like just as if you wouldn’t want to pick up a 100-pound weight without preparing yourself.” – Maya Angelou

35. “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” – Maya Angelou

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

36. “If you have only one smile in you give it to the people you love.” – Maya Angelou

37. “You may write me down in history with your bitter, twisted lines. You may trod me in the very dirt, but still, like dust, I’ll rise.” – Maya Angelou

38. “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.” – Maya Angelou

39. “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.” – Maya Angelou

40. “We write for the same reason that we walk, talk, climb mountains or swim the oceans – because we can. We have some impulse within us that makes us want to explain ourselves to other human beings. That’s why we paint, that’s why we dare to love someone – because we have the impulse to explain who we are.” – Maya Angelou

41. “I never had that feeling that I had to carry the weight of somebody’s ignorance around with me. And that was true for racists who wanted to use the ‘n’ word when talking about me or about my people, or the stupidity of people who really wanted to belittle other folks because they weren’t pretty or they weren’t rich or they weren’t clever.” – Maya Angelou

42. “I’m always disappointed when people don’t live up to their potential. I know that a number of people look down on themselves and consequently on everybody who looks like them. But that, too, can change.” – Maya Angelou

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

44. “I would like to be known as an intelligent woman, a courageous woman, a loving woman, a woman who teaches by being.” – Maya Angelou

45. “My wish for you is that you continue. Continue to be who and how you are, to astonish a mean world with your acts of kindness. Continue to allow humor to lighten the burden of your tender heart.” – Maya Angelou

46. “I’ve never had a dislike for men. I’ve been badly treated by some. But I’ve been loved greatly by some. I married a lot of them.” – Maya Angelou

47. “My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done, to try and love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return.” – Maya Angelou

48. “I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” – Maya Angelou

49. “Home is a refuge, not only from the world but a refuge from my worries, my terrible concerns. I like beautiful things around me. I like to be beautiful because it delights my eyes and my soul is lifted up.” – Maya Angelou

50. “If we accept being talked to any kind of a way, then we are telling ourselves we are not quite worth the best. And if we have the effrontery to talk to anybody with less than courtesy, we tell ourselves and the world we are not very intelligent.” – Maya Angelou

51. “I would be a liar, a hypocrite, or a fool – and I’m not any of those – to say that I don’t write for the reader. I do. But for the reader who hears, who really will work at it, going behind what I seem to say. So I write for myself and that reader who will pay the dues.” – Maya Angelou

52. “If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.” – Maya Angelou

53. “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off of you.” – Maya Angelou

54. “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” – Maya Angelou

55. “A cynical young person is almost the saddest sight to see, because it means that he or she has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing.” – Maya Angelou

56. “All my work, my life, everything I do is about survival, not just bare, awful, plodding survival, but survival with grace and faith. While one may encounter many defeats, one must not be defeated.” – Maya Angelou

Final Thought

You have the power to change yourself and as well as the world. Although the process can consume lots of your time, patience, and effort, it’ll be all paid off in the end – for certain. Also, don’t give up! Instead, give your best shot to everything you do. Don’t be afraid to try new things and face new challenges. After all, obstacles are there to help you grow – face it instead of avoiding it!

Leave a Reply