Motivational Quotes by Women

Memorable Quotes by Women to Inspire and Uplift

Pacific Islander woman jogging on concrete steps
Colin Anderson / Getty Images

The women's rights movement is dedicated to the idea that women should have equal rights with men. It began with women gaining property rights and the right to vote and sign a contract, and it has expanded to opening occupations that were previously closed to women and to the right to equal pay for equal work.

Whether they are feminists, activists, writers, TV personalities, spiritual leaders, psychologists, poets or educators, the sayings of these women who sought equality motivate us all and leave an indelible impression.

Margaret Mead

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."

Erica Jong

"Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads."

Harriet Beecher Stowe

"Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn."

Nadezhda Mandelstam

"I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity."

Dianne Feinstein

"Toughness doesn't have to come in a pinstripe suit."

Anne Frank

"Parents can only give good advice or put them [children] on the right paths, but the final forming of a person's character lies in their own hands."

"In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can't build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death." 

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."

Eleanor Roosevelt

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, "I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." You must do the thing you think you cannot do."

Susan B. Anthony

"It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union."

Oprah Winfrey

"As you become more clear about who you really are, you'll be better able to decide what is best for you -- the first time around."

Indira Gandhi

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

Peace Pilgrim

"When you find peace within yourself, you become the kind of person who can live at peace with others."

Janis Joplin

"Don't compromise yourself. You are all you've got."

Dr. Joyce Brothers

"Love comes when manipulation stops; when you think more about the other person than about his or her reactions to you. When you dare to reveal yourself fully. When you dare to be vulnerable."

Barbara De Angelis

"You never lose by loving. You always lose by holding back."

Dolores Huerta

"If you haven't forgiven yourself something, how can you forgive others?"

Mother Theresa

"I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much."

Joyce Carol Oates

"It is only through disruptions and confusion that we grow, jarred out of ourselves by the collision of someone else's private world with our own."

Louisa May Alcott

"Love is a great beautifier."

Dolly Parton

"If you want the rainbow, you've got to put up with the rain."

Maya Angelou

"You can write me down in history with hateful, twisted lies, you can tread me in this very dirt, but still, like dust, I'll rise."

"It is this belief in a power larger than myself and other than myself, which allows me to venture into the unknown and even the unknowable. "

Helen Hayes

"Rest and you rust."

Kaethe Kollwitz

"I am gradually approaching the period in my life when work comes first. No longer diverted by other emotions, I work the way a cow grazes."

Doris Lessing

"None of you [men] ask for anything -- except everything, but just for so long as you need it."

Bella Abzug

"We are coming down from our pedestal and up from the laundry room."

Susan B. Anthony

"There never will be complete equality until women themselves help to make laws and elect lawmakers."

"A woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself."

Virginia Woolf

"Each has his past shut in him like the leaves of a book known to him by heart and his friends can only read the title."