Maya Angelou Quotes

200+ Remarkable Maya Angelou Quotes

Marguerite Annie Johnson, better known as the American poet Maya Angelou, was born on April 4th, 1928, in St. Louis, Missouri. She was a remarkable woman and writer, serving as an inspiration to many. Keep reading for some of the best Maya Angelou quotes to inspire you.

Maya Angelou: The Beginning

In 1940, Angelou moved to San Francisco, California, with her mother, where she worked various jobs, including a waitress, prostitute, dancer, etc. She gave birth to her only son, Guy Johnson, in 1944 at the young age of 16. While working to support her family, she discovered a passion for dancing and, in the late 1950s, decided to move across the country to New York City.

Maya Angelou: Her Career

In the Big Apple, she landed a role in George Gershwin’s Porgy and Besswhich took her across 22 countries in Europe and Africa. Throughout the following decade, she continued to star in performances and write for the Arab Observer in Egypt and the African Review in Ghana.

In 1966, Angelou decided to move back to California. There, she became the first African American woman to write, produce, direct, and star in a plethora of Hollywood productions. During this time, she received two Tony Award nominations for her peformances in Look Away (1973) and and the TV series Roots (1977). In 1981, she continued her career as a professor at Wake Forest University in North Carolina while heavily pursuing her love for writing.

In her lifetime, she was awarded over 50 honorary degrees, the National Medal of Arts (2000), three Grammys (1994, 1996, & 2003), and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2010). Angelou also delivered her poem On the Pulse of Morning at the inauguration of United States President Bill Clinton. She was an incredible woman known as an avid Civil Rights Activist whose life was brimming with courage, joy, and inspiration.

Maya Angelou: The End

Her death on May 28th, 2014, sent many into mourning. Still, as a renowned poet, one of her greatest gifts to society was the many works of autobiography, poetry, and literature that encapsulated the beautiful life she lived and the greatest quotes she graced us with. Find some inspiring quotes below in this list of remarkable Maya Angelou quotes.

Maya Angelou Quotes
Maya Angelou delivering her poem at the Inauguration of Bill Clinton. Photo courtesy of William J. Clinton Presidential Library.

Maya Angelou Quotes About Life

“Each of us has that right, that possibility, to invent ourselves daily. If a person does not invent herself, she will be invented. So, to be bodacious enough to invent ourselves is wise.” -Maya Angelou

“I believe that every person is born with talent.” -Maya Angelou

“I think a hero is any person really intent on making this a better place for all people.” -Maya Angelou

“I have respect for the past, but I’m a person of the moment.” -Maya Angelou

“I had to trust life since I was young enough to believe that life loved the person who dared to live it.” -Maya Angelou

“Life loves the liver of it.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.” -Maya Angelou

“Some people cannot see a good thing when it is right here, right now. Others can sense a good thing coming when it is days, months, or miles away.” -Maya Angelou

“Just do right. Right may not be expedient, it may not be profitable, but it will satisfy your soul. It brings you the kind of protection that bodyguards can’t give you. So try to live your life in a way that you will not regret years of useless virtue and inertia and timidity. Take up the battle. Take it up. It’s yours. This is your life. This is your world.” -Maya Angelou

“There is a very fine line between loving life and being greedy for it.” -Maya Angelou

“Success is loving life and daring to live it.” -Maya Angelou

“Stepping onto a brand-new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation, which is not nurturing to the whole woman.” -Maya Angelou

“We need much less than we think we need.” -Maya Angelou

“I was told many years ago by my grandmother who raised me: If somebody puts you on a road and you don’t feel comfortable on it, and you look ahead and you don’t like the destination, and you look behind, and you don’t want to return to that place, step off the road.” -Maya Angelou

“Live as though life was created for you.” -Maya Angelou

“I hope that I may always desire more than I can accomplish.” -Maya Angelou

“Be present in all things and thankful for all things.” -Maya Angelou

“Life is pure adventure, and the sooner we realize that the quicker we will be able to treat life as art.” -Maya Angelou

“I want all my senses engaged. Let me absorb the world’s variety and uniqueness.” -Maya Angelou

“Everything in the universe has a rhythm, everything dances.” -Maya Angelou

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.” -Maya Angelou

“Determine to live life with flair and laughter.” -Maya Angelou

“Nature has no mercy at all. Nature says, ‘I’m going to snow. If you have on a bikini and no snowshoes, that’s tough. I am going to snow anyway.’” -Maya Angelou

“Since time is the one immaterial object which we cannot influence, neither speed up nor slow down, add to nor diminish; it is an imponderably valuable gift.” -Maya Angelou

“This is a wonderful day; I have never seen this one before.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that no matter what happens or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.” -Maya Angelou

“I feel very hopeful, very expectant. I’m looking forward to it.” -Maya Angelou

“I believe in living a poetic life, an art full life. Everything we do, from the way we raise our children to the way we welcome our friends, is part of a large canvas we are creating.” -Maya Angelou

“My life has been one great big joke, a dance that’s walked a song that’s spoke; I laugh so hard I almost choke when I think about myself.” -Maya Angelou

“When was the last time anyone told you how important you are?” -Maya Angelou

“I have enough of life in me to make somebody jealous enough to want to knock me down. I have so much courage in me that I have the effrontery, the incredible gall to stand up. That’s it. That’s how you get to know who you are.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that making a “living” is not the same thing as making a “life”.” -Maya Angelou

“Life loves to be taken by the lapel and told, ‘I’m with you, kid. Let’s go’.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.” -Maya Angelou

“At fifteen, life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice.” -Maya Angelou

“This is what I am learning, at 82 years old: the main thing is to be in love with the search for truth.” -Maya Angelou

“The children to whom we read simple stories may or may not show gratitude, but each boon we give strengthens the pillars of the world.” -Maya Angelou

“When you know you are of worth — not asking it but knowing it — you walk into a room with a particular power.” -Maya Angelou

“I can be changed by what happens to me, but I refuse to be reduced by it.” -Maya Angelou

“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

“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

Maya Angelou Quotes on Courage

“Develop enough courage so that you can stand up for yourself and then stand up for somebody else.” -Maya Angelou

“If one has courage, nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” -Maya Angelou

“I think that each of us is so much alike, and yet at the same time we are so different, and I have a feeling that if you encountered difficulty, and I with my age encountered the same difficulty, I would respond one way, and you would respond another. Neither would be right or wrong. It’s just that each of us is courageous, and that’s what I encourage, courage, and the courage to see, and the courage to say to oneself what one has seen. Don’t be in denial.” -Maya Angelou

“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

“You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I’ll rise!” And I Still Rise (poem collection) -Maya Angelou

“Out of the huts of history’s shame, I rise. Up from a past, that’s rooted in pain, I rise. I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide. Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear, I rise. Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear, I rise. Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise, I rise, I rise.” Still, I Rise (poem) -Maya Angelou

“To develop courage, you have to start developing courage as you do any other muscle. You have to start with small things and build it up.” -Maya Angelou

“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

“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

Maya Angelou Quotes on Growth and Forgiveness

“The real difficulty is to overcome how you think about yourself. If we don’t have that, we never grow, we never learn, and sure as hell, we should never teach.”

“Forgive yourself for not knowing what you didn’t know before you learned it.” -Maya Angelou

“Most people don’t grow up. Most people age. They find parking spaces, honor their credit cards, get married, have children, and call that maturity. What that is, is aging.” -Maya Angelou

“We can be better; we can be wiser; we can be more kind. Yes, we have to change. We have to grow up and stop acting like 10 years old. Yes, there is much to do, much to see, much to go into.” -Maya Angelou

“You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end, the real forgiveness is in one’s own self.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that forgiving is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself.” -Maya Angelou

“As soon as healing takes place, go out, and heal somebody else.” -Maya Angelou

“Look what you’ve already come through! Don’t deny it. You’ve already come through some things, which are very painful. If you’ve been alive until you’re 35, you have gone through some pain. It cost you something. And you’ve come through it. So at least look at that. And have the sense to look at yourself and say, “Well, wait a minute. I’m stronger than I thought I was.” -Maya Angelou

“We cannot change the past, but we can change our attitude toward it. Uproot guilt and plant forgiveness. Tear out arrogance and seed humility. Exchange love for hate – thereby, making the present comfortable and the future promising.” -Maya Angelou

“When I forgive other people, I let them go; I free them from my ignorance. And as soon as I do, I feel lighter, brighter, and better.” -Maya Angelou

“Grace is like a lake of drinkable water right outside your door. But you stay inside and die of thirst.” -Maya Angelou

“Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.” -Maya Angelou

“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.” -Maya Angelou

“I long, as does every human being, to be at home wherever I find myself.” -Maya Angelou

brown wheat field

Maya Angelou Quotes on Being True to Oneself

“I am a woman phenomenally, a phenomenal woman that is your grandmother, that is your mother, that is your sister, that is you, and that is me.” Phenomenal Women (poem) -Maya Angelou

“God puts rainbows in the clouds so that each of us – in the dreariest and most dreaded moments – can see a possibility of hope.” -Maya Angelou

“Open your eyes to the beauty around you, open your mind to the wonders of life, open your heart to those who love you, and always be true to yourself.” -Maya Angelou

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

“You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anybody.” -Maya Angelou

“All great achievements require time.” -Maya Angelou

“If someone shows you who they really are, believe them.” -Maya Angelou

“If I am not good to myself, how can I expect anyone else to be good to me?” -Maya Angelou

“Life is going to give you just what you put in it. Put your whole heart in everything you do, and pray, then you can wait.” I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (book) -Maya Angelou

“What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.” -Maya Angelou

“No matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.” -Maya Angelou

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

“Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” -Maya Angelou

“When you know you are of worth, you don’t have to raise your voice, you don’t have to become rude, you don’t have to become vulgar; you just are. And you are like the sky is, as the air is, the same way water is wet. It doesn’t have to protest.” -Maya Angelou

“I not only have the right to stand up for myself, but I have the responsibility. I can’t ask somebody else to stand up for me if I won’t stand up for myself. And once you stand up for yourself, you’d be surprised that people say, ‘Can I be of help?'” -Maya Angelou

“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” -Maya Angelou

“Surviving is important. Thriving is elegant.” -Maya Angelou

“You only are free when you realize you belong no place – you belong every place – no place at all. The price is high. The reward is great.” -Maya Angelou

“When I decided to speak, I had a lot to say.” -Maya Angelou

“If you want what you’re saying heard, then take your time and say it so that the listener will actually hear it. You might save somebody’s life. Your own, first.” -Maya Angelou

“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.” -Maya Angelou

“I do not trust people who don’t love themselves and yet tell me, ‘I love you.’ There is an African saying which is: Be careful when a naked person offers you a shirt.” -Maya Angelou

“Whining is just unbecoming.” -Maya Angelou

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

Maya Angelou Quotes on Love and Friendship

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

“We are here to love each other. That is why you are alive. That is what life is for.” -Maya Angelou

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” -Maya Angelou

“What I really would like said about me is that I dared to love. By love, I mean that condition in the human spirit so profound it encourages us to develop courage and build bridges, and then to trust those bridges and cross the bridges in attempts to reach other human beings.” -Maya Angelou

“I believe that people want the scent of love, more than anything else. And I don’t mean sentimentality; I don’t mean mush. I mean that idea that human beings are more alike than we are different.” -Maya Angelou

“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” -Maya Angelou

“To those who have given up on love: I say, “Trust life a little bit”.” -Maya Angelou

“When people see the laughing face, even if they’re jealous of it, their burden is lightened. But do it first for yourself. Laugh and dare to try to love somebody, starting with yourself.” -Maya Angelou

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

“Had I known that the heart breaks slowly, dismantling itself into unrecognizable plots of misery… had I known, yet I would have loved you, your brash and insolent beauty, your heavy comedic face, and knowledge of sweet delights, but from a distance, I would have left you whole and wholly for the delectation of those who wanted more and cared less.” And Still, I Rise (poem collection) -Maya Angelou

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

“It’s hard because people think they have something to lose, and the truth is they have everything to gain in trying to love somebody.” -Maya Angelou

“The sisters and brothers that you meet give you the materials which your character uses to build itself. It is said that some people are born great, others achieve it, some have it thrust upon them. In truth, the ways in which your character is built have to do with all three of those. Those around you, those you choose, and those who choose you.” -Maya Angelou

“In the flush of love’s light / we dare be brave / and suddenly we see / that love costs all we are / and will ever be. / Yet it is only love which sets us free.” Touched by an Angel (poem) -Maya Angelou

“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

“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

“The honorary duty of a human being is to love.” -Maya Angelou

“When we find someone who is brave, fun, intelligent, and loving, we have to thank the universe.” -Maya Angelou

“It’s very hard for adults to maintain respect and romance so that a love affair can be sustained over years.” -Maya Angelou

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

“If you want to liberate someone, love them. Not be in love with them – that’s dangerous.” -Maya Angelou

“By love, I don’t mean indulgence. I do not mean sentimentality. And in this instance, I don’t even mean romance. I mean that condition that allowed humans to dream of God. That condition that allowed the “dumb” to write spirituals and Russian songs and Irish lilts. That is love, and it’s so much larger than anything I can conceive.” -Maya Angelou

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” -Maya Angelou

“If you happen to fall in love with someone in another race, it’s more difficult because you have to translate yourself.” -Maya Angelou

“Everybody is worth everything.” -Maya Angelou

“It’s very important to know the neighbor next door and the people down the street and the people in another race.” -Maya Angelou

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

“I am grateful to have been loved and to be loved now and to be able to love.” -Maya Angelou

“Only equals can become friends.” -Maya Angelou

“First best is falling in love. Second best is being in love. Least best is falling out of love. But any of it is better than never having been in love.” -Maya Angelou

“Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option.” -Maya Angelou

photo of woman beside another woman at seashore

Maya Angelou Quotes on Happiness

“Joy is freedom. It helps a person to find his or her own liberation. The person who is joyous takes responsibility for the time he/she takes up and the space that he/she occupies. You share it! Some of you have it … you share it! That is what joy is! When you continue to give it away, you will still have so much more of it.” -Maya Angelou

“A friend may be waiting behind a stranger’s face.” Letter to My Daughter (book) -Maya Angelou

“When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.” -Maya Angelou

“I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.” -Maya Angelou

“We allow our ignorance to prevail upon us and make us think we can survive alone, alone in patches, alone in groups, alone in races, even alone in genders.” -Maya Angelou

“Nobody can enjoy unless we all enjoy, truly enjoy.” -Maya Angelou

“I don’t trust anyone who doesn’t laugh.” -Maya Angelou

“We spend precious hours fearing the inevitable. It would be wise to use that time adoring our families, cherishing our friends, and living our lives.” -Maya Angelou

“The thing to do, it seems to me, is to prepare yourself so you can be a rainbow in somebody else’s cloud.” -Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou Quotes on Grief, Pain, and Negativity

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

“You should be angry. You must not be bitter. Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. It doesn’t do anything to the object of its displeasure. So use that anger. You write it. You paint it. You dance it. You march it. You vote it. You do everything about it. You talk it. Never stop talking it.” -Maya Angelou

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

“Someone was hurt before you, wronged before you, hungry before you, frightened before you, beaten before you, humiliated before you, raped before you… yet, someone survived… You can do anything you choose to do.” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one.” -Maya Angelou

“Self-pity in its early stages is as snug as a feather mattress. Only when it hardens does it become uncomfortable.” -Maya Angelou

“Whining lets the brute know there’s a victim for him in the neighborhood.” -Maya Angelou

“Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.” -Maya Angelou

“I’m convinced that the negative has power. It lives. And if you allow it to perch in your house, in your mind, in your life, it can take you over. So when the rude or cruel thing is said – the lambasting, the gay-bashing, the hate – I say, “Take it all out of my house!” Those negative words climb into the woodwork and into the furniture, and the next thing you know, they’ll be on my skin.” -Maya Angelou

Demonstrators walk along a street holding signs demanding the right to vote and equal civil rights at the March on Washington

Maya Angelou Quotes on History, Change, and Justice

“The needs of society determine its ethics.” -Maya Angelou

“Effective action is always unjust.” -Maya Angelou

“The need for change bulldozed a road down the center of my mind.” -Maya Angelou

“There’s a world of difference between truth and facts. Facts can obscure the truth.” -Maya Angelou

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

“History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage need not be lived again.” -Maya Angelou

“The caged bird sings with a fearful trill of things unknown but longed for still, and his tune is heard on the distant hill for the caged bird sings of freedom.” I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (poem) -Maya Angelou

“My people couldn’t have survived slavery without having hope that it would get better.” -Maya Angelou

“It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity, there is beauty, and there is strength.”-Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou Quotes on Hard Work and Pursuing Dreams

“My work is to be honest. My work is to try to think clearly, then have the courage to make sure that what I say is the truth.” -Maya Angelou

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

“I believe that the most important single thing, beyond discipline and creativity, is daring to dare.” -Maya Angelou

“If one is lucky, a solitary fantasy can totally transform one million realities.” -Maya Angelou

“Nothing will work unless you do.” -Maya Angelou

“The best candy shop a child can be left alone in, is the library.” -Maya Angelou

“The desire to reach for the stars is ambitious. The desire to reach hearts is wise.” -Maya Angelou

“When you get, give. When you learn, teach.” -Maya Angelou

“Your belief and your work will speak for you.” -Maya Angelou

“If a human being dreams a great dream, dares to love somebody; if a human being dares to be Martin King, or Mahatma Gandhi, or Mother Theresa, or Malcolm X; if a human being dares to be bigger than the condition into which she or he was born – it means so can you. And so you can try to stretch, stretch, stretch yourself so you can internalize, ‘Homo sum, humani nil a me alienum puto. I am a human being; nothing human can be alien to me.’ That’s one thing I’m learning.” -Maya Angelou

“I do my best because I’m counting on you counting on me.” -Maya Angelou

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

“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 you.” -Maya Angelou

“Ask for what you want and be prepared to get it!” -Maya Angelou

“Achievement brings its own anticlimax.” -Maya Angelou

“You can never be great at anything unless you love it. Not be in love with it, but love the thing, admire the thing. And it seems that if you love the thing, and you don’t just want to possess it, it will find you. But if you’re in love with the thing, it may run like hell away from you.” -Maya Angelou

“We need to not be in denial about what we’ve done, what we’ve come through. It will help us if we all do that.” -Maya Angelou

“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” -Maya Angelou

“All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened.” -Maya Angelou

“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

Maya Angelou Quotes on Writing and Knowledge

“My mother said I must always be intolerant of ignorance but understanding of illiteracy.” -Maya Angelou

“I like to go back and read poems that I wrote fifty years ago, twenty years ago, and sometimes they surprise me – I didn’t know I knew that then. Or maybe I didn’t know it then, and I know more now.” -Maya Angelou

“There are those who say that poets should use her and his art to change the world. I’d agree with that, but I think everybody should do that. I think the chef and the baker and the candlestick maker – I think everybody should be hoping to make it a better world.” -Maya Angelou

“I never have written every day. When I’m writing a book, I write Monday through Friday. I always try to take Saturday and pretend to have some sanity.” -Maya Angelou

“My equipment tends to be that of a social humanitarian and a poet, which I suppose is the same thing, and I tend to watch how people are.” -Maya Angelou

“Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning.” I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (book) -Maya Angelou

“The truth is, right may not be expedient. It may not be profitable, but it will satisfy your soul.” -Maya Angelou

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” -Maya Angelou

“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

gold and black click pen

Maya Angelou Quotes To Inspire Women and Young Girls

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

“A man or woman who sees other people as whole and prepared and accords them respect and the same rights has arranged his or her own allies.” -Maya Angelou

“Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” -Maya Angelou

“A woman’s heart should be so hidden in God that a man has to seek Him just to find her.” -Maya Angelou

“How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!” -Maya Angelou

“I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way (s)he handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.” -Maya Angelou

“A leader sees greatness in other people. He nor she can be much of a leader if all she sees is herself.” -Maya Angelou

“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

Other Maya Angelou Quotes to Inspire Anyone

“If a person – any human being – is told often enough, “You are nothing. You are nothing. You account for nothing. You count for nothing. You are less than a human being. I have no visibility of you,” the person finally begins to believe it.” -Maya Angelou

“One person, with good purpose, can constitute the majority.” -Maya Angelou

“If you’re for the right thing, you do it without thinking.” -Maya Angelou

“I believe we are still so innocent. The species are still so innocent that a person who is apt to be murdered believes that the murderer, just before he puts the final wrench on his throat, will have enough compassion to give him one sweet cup of water.” -Maya Angelou

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

“I try to see every day as a celebration.” -Maya Angelou

“Listen to yourself, and in that quietude, you might hear the voice of God.” -Maya Angelou

“We are only as blind as we want to be.” -Maya Angelou

“I’m really saddened by the attempts to separate and polarize. This is a time when we have hungry people, people out of work, and people out of spirit. This is a time when we need to uplift, not to separate.” -Maya Angelou

“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

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

“You can’t really know where you are going until you know where you have been.” -Maya Angelou

“We are not just flesh and blood. And our hungers are not going to be set aside as just flesh and blood.” -Maya Angelou

“I know why the caged bird sings.” -Maya Angelou

“You listen with interest. That gives some sense of confidence to the speaker.” -Maya Angelou

“Human beings are more alike than unalike. Whether in Paris, Texas, or Paris, France, we all want to have good jobs where we are needed and respected and paid just a little more than we deserve. We want healthy children, safe streets, to be loved and have the unmitigated gall to accept love.” -Maya Angelou

“I’m considered wise, and sometimes I see myself as knowing. Most of the time, I see myself as wanting to know. And I see myself as a very interested person. I’ve never been bored in my life.” -Maya Angelou

“I encourage courtesy. To accept nothing less than courtesy, and to give nothing less than courtesy.” -Maya Angelou

“Those who have something to say accept the fact that that’s lonely. One already knows that there will be adversaries.” -Maya Angelou

For Further Reading & Information

Enjoyed a Maya Angelou quote above? If so, then be sure to check out some of her most prized pieces of poetry and literature. If a new favorite quote was found in this article, then an inspirational quote or two will certainly be found in her work.

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