101 Words of Encouragement to Keep Working Towards Your Goals and Get Back Up When Life Knocks You Down

Everyone needs encouragement. In times of trouble, through hours of loss, and standing on the sidelines of life, words of encouragement can help soothe a friend’s broken heart, comfort a lonely widow, and cheer on the goal-setting go-getter.

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Whether you yourself are looking for words of encouragement or you’d like to pass some along, we’ve compiled a lengthy list of soul-boosting words to help spread good vibes and well-being.

Words of Encouragement for Him

Words of Encouragement for Him

  1. “Man is what he believes.” – Anton Chekhov

What you think is how you shape who you are. That’s why it’s important to be optimistic, have hope, and move forward in life with a positive attitude.

  1. “The stronger a man is, the more gentle he can afford to be.” – Elbert Hubbard

It takes strength to be gentle and step lightly. The stronger you are, the easier it is.

  1. “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” – William James

 These words of encouragement are here to remind you that everything you do matters. Make each action a positive step toward your future.

  1. “A great man is hard on himself; a small man is hard on others.” – Confucius

Good men are good to other people.

  1. “If the decisions you make about where you invest your blood, sweat, and tears are not consistent with the person you aspire to be, you’ll never become that person.” – Clayton M. Christensen

What you seek and what you desire are only found through action. Who you want to be won’t just come to you – you have to work for it.

  1. “You – yourself, not someone else – need to determine where you want to go and what you want to do in your life. And once you make that decision, you can begin mapping a plan to get there and focusing on that objective every single day.” – Squire Rushnell

Send words of encouragement to your brother, friend, or relative, and motivate him to choose his own path and get after it.

  1. “Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right.  These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.” – W. Clement Stone

Stick to your guns, as they say. Your moral compass should always guide you through your life.

  1. “Every man who accomplishes things sees first in his mind what he wishes to do. He puts away all doubt. It makes no difference how small or how large the thing you want to do may be; if you have an unlimited confidence in your ability to do it, you will do.” – Charles Fillmore

Encouraging words to boost confidence in your ability. Can you see your goals ahead of you? If you can see it, you can do it.

  1. “There is a great man who makes every man feel small. But the real great man is the man who makes every man feel great.” – G.K. Chesterton

Strong, confident people help raise others up.

  1. “The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Work hard. Give it your all. Success isn’t achieved suddenly. It’s achieved by working for it when others are slumbering.

  1. “The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics, whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were, and ask why not.” – John F. Kennedy

A far more lyrical way of saying, “Think outside the box.”

  1. “You will earn the respect of all men if you begin by earning the respect of yourself.” – Musonius Rufus

How can you expect others to respect you if you don’t respect yourself? How do you earn your own respect? Discipline. Make the best out of every day, build yourself into a strong individual, and treat yourself as someone who matters. Because you do.

  1. “Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value.” – Albert Einstein

Words of encouragement from Albert Einstein emphasizing the importance of what you have to offer the world, rather than what you are able to accumulate from it.

Words of Encouragement for Her

Words of Encouragement for Her

  1. “Do not live someone else’s life and someone else’s idea of what womanhood is. Womanhood is you. Womanhood is everything that’s inside of you.” – Viola Davis

You are enough.

  1. “Forget about the fast lane. If you really want to fly, just harness your power to your passion.” – Oprah Winfrey

Use what you’re passionate about to build your life. Surely, you’ll soar.

  1. “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” – Alice Walker

You have more power within you than you even realize. Imagine tapping into just a portion of the power you do have. The world is yours.

  1. “The world said, “Be invisible.” But she heard, “Be invincible.” – Amy Trowbridge-Yates

Turn negative words into positive ones.

  1. “Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Criticism and judgment seem to come from all directions sometimes. Unless the criticism is constructive and useful, toss it aside. Do what you think is right.

  1. “I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.” – Estée Lauder

Words of encouragement from a highly successful entrepreneur about how success is earned through hard work. Get to it.

  1. “I know for sure that what we dwell on is what we become.” – Oprah Winfrey

Where the mind goes…the man follows (another popular saying coined by scholars to describe multiple Biblical passages).

  1. “The most beautiful thing you can wear is confidence.” – Blake Lively

Confidence shines through your outer appearance, whatever that may be. As it is often said, beauty comes from within. And beauty starts with self-confidence.

  1. “Not knowing you can’t do something, is sometimes all it takes to do it.” – Ally Carter

Sometimes, the only thing standing in your way is you.

  1. “The power you have is to be the best version of yourself you can be, so you can create a better world.” – Ashley Rickards

Share these words of encouragement with your best friend, mom, or sister. Within you is the power to have an amazing life.

  1. “Give the world the best you have, and the best will come to you.” – Madeline Bridge

The laws of nature dictate that you reap what you sow. So sow good stuff.

Words of Encouragement for Kids

Words of Encouragement for Kids

  1. “When you know better you do better.” – Maya Angelou

Words of encouragement for kids who may not understand why they made a mistake.

  1. “No one is perfect – that’s why pencils have erasers.” – Wolfgang Riebe

Everyone makes mistakes. The key is to learn from them and do better next time.

  1. “You can steer yourself any direction you choose.” – Dr. Seuss

Wise words from Dr. Seuss. Encourage a child you know to head for their dreams.

  1. “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.” – Hans Christian Andersen

For children who love fairy tales, these words of encouragement from famous fairy tale author, Hans Christian Andersen, remind kids that life is the best story of all.

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

Encourage children to be creative. The world needs more of it.

  1. “You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.” – Babe Ruth

These words of encouragement are to remind kids, and of course adults, to never give up. Never stop. Just keep going. Perseverance wins many races.

  1. “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

A genius in his own right, Albert Einstein often spoke words of encouragement in his books. This particular quote eloquently expresses the fact everyone is different and smart at something.

  1. “You always pass failure on the way to success.” – Mickey Rooney

Failure is a necessary component in finding success. It’s through the failures and setbacks that you figure out who you are and what you’re made of, which helps determine your future course.

  1. “The expert in anything was once a beginner.” – Helen Hayes

In order to be good at anything, you have to start at the beginning. And typically, starting at the beginning means it may take you awhile to become an expert.

  1. “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” – Steve Martin

Words of encouragement from long-time, successful comedian, Steve Martin, to remind you that quality rises to the top.

  1. “When you want something, the whole universe conspires to make it happen.” – Paulo Coelho

Focus on the good things you want. As you zero in on your goals and dreams, you’ll begin to see the world around you show you the way.

  1. “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” – Dr. Seuss

People aren’t meant to be cookie-cutter replicas.

Words of Encouragement for Disappointment

Words of Encouragement for Disappointment

  1. “Sometimes when you’re in a dark place you think you’ve been buried, but you’ve actually been planted.” – Christine Caine

It’s true that it’s often the disappointments, failures, or setbacks themselves that actually launch you forward or set you up for great rewards.

  1. “Optimism is the one quality more associated with success and happiness than any other.” – Brian Tracy

When you’re optimistic about the things in front of you, you spot more opportunities, chase more goals, and achieve more success. You also smile more.

  1. “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” – Henry Ford

The only real failure is giving up. As long as you keep going, learn from your mistakes and the things that just didn’t go right, success will be a matter of time.

  1. “A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes.” – Hugh Downs

Learn to be happy and content no matter your circumstances – have a positive attitude and optimistic outlook. This doesn’t mean you won’t feel disappointment, but on the heels of disappointment comes opportunity.

  1. “Turn your wounds into wisdom.” – Oprah Winfrey

Words of encouragement to remind you to use your disappointment to your advantage.

  1. “If you ever think about giving up, remember why you held on for so long.” – Hayley Williams

You’ve come this far. You’ve been through the bad days, climbed over your mountains, and managed to keep going until this point. Why stop now?

  1. “There can be no deep disappointment where there is no deep love.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

The disappointment you feel is because you care. Use that inner passion to fuel your next try.

  1. “There is not necessarily a solution for every problem; however, every problem can be managed positively.” – Robert Schuller

These words of encouragement are to remind you that problems will always exist. But you have the power to decide how to deal with them – negatively or positively.

  1. “Failure” is not the falling down, but the staying down.” – Mary Pickford

You only truly fail if you give up.

  1. “The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the size of your dream; and how you handle disappointment along the way.” – Robert Kiyosaki

Disappointment is inevitable. It’s what you do when disappointment hits that helps determine how far you go.

  1. “One’s best success comes after their greatest disappointments.” – Henry Ward Beecher

Disappointments, like failures or setbacks, often set the stage for your next greatest achievement. It’s when we face adversity that we have the opportunity to rise higher than we were before.

  1. “Life is not always a celebration; so be ready to courageously face disappointments when they come, and be sure to grow stronger and wiser from them.” – Edmond Mbiaka

 These words of encouragement express the ups and downs of life. Enjoy the ups, but be ready for the downs and learn from them.

  1. “Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” – Wayne Dyer

How you react to something, good or bad, is your choice. You can either be miserable about your life or excited about your life. Positive or negative, it’s your choice.

Words of Encouragement for Loss

Words of Encouragement for Loss

  1. “We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.” – Cora L. V. Hatch

Sometimes life takes things in a different direction than you planned. Rather than fighting it, adjust your course accordingly.

  1. “It is not length of life, but depth of life.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

These words of encouragement for loss emphasize the importance of a life well lived.

  1. “What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” – Helen Keller

Though someone or something important may be gone from your life, they are never gone from your heart. Who or what you love remains inside you.

  1. “I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love.” – Leo Buscaglia

When you love someone, they become a part of who you are, even in how you behave and what you say.

  1. “What is lovely never dies, but passes into another loveliness, Star-dust or sea-foam, Flower or winged air.” – Thomas Bailey Aldrich

Part of the poem, “A Shadow in the Night,” these lyrical words of encouragement describe an ever-lasting beauty that transforms and never dies.

  1. “We never truly get over a loss, but we can move forward and evolve from it.” – Elizabeth Berrien

Losses of any kind are usually felt deep and long. Embracing the change, moving with the flow, and growing from the experience create a more enriching life.

  1. “The weird, weird thing about devastating loss is that life actually goes on. When you’re faced with a tragedy, a loss so huge that you have no idea how you can live through it, somehow, the world keeps turning, the seconds keep ticking.” – James Patterson

It is amazing that when your world seems to suddenly shift under your feet, everything else is still in place and moving along as though things are normal.

  1. “Though lovers be lost, love shall not; And death shall have no dominion.” – Dylan Thomas

Part of the poem, “And death shall have no dominion,” these words of encouragement for loss convey how love itself never dies.

  1. “It hurts because it mattered.” – Author Unknown, voiced by John Green

There is some comfort in knowing that the hurt from loss is deep because what you lost mattered so much. That’s love, and love lives forever.

Words of Encouragement for Life’s Challenges

Words of Encouragement for Life's Challenges

  1. “You never know how strong you are, until being strong is your only choice.” – Bob Marley

Just when you think you can’t, you can. You have more strength than you realize.

  1. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

It is the hard times that create the person. Character is built in times of struggle.

  1. “We all have challenges. You can let them be obstacles or roadblocks, or you can use them.” – Amy Purdy

Most things in life are beyond your control. What you can control is how you view things, how you feel, and what you do about it.

  1. “Courage isn’t having the strength to go on – it is going on when you don’t have strength.” – Author Unknown

These words of encouragement for life’s challenges remind you that courage itself is a sign of strength. You build continued strength by using your courage to just put one foot in front of the other.

  1. “It is our duty as men and women to proceed as though the limits of our abilities do not exist.” – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Life’s challenges are usually about pushing limits. This encouraging quote reminds you that you should push back like you have no limits in your ability to meet and rise above the challenge.

  1. “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, ‘I’m possible’!” – Audrey Hepburn

A thought-provoking play on words to encourage you to believe that anything is possible.

  1. “We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don’t have something better.” – C. JoyBell C.

Comfort doesn’t challenge you to seek something better. With change comes the possibility of greatness.

  1. “There are moments when troubles enter our lives and we can do nothing to avoid them. But they are there for a reason. Only when we have overcome them will we understand why they were there.” – Paulo Coelho

Words of encouragement for life’s challenges to help you understand that the challenges you face are there to teach you a lesson or two. You may not fully understand the reasoning until the lesson is over.

  1. “A bend in the road is not the end of the road…Unless you fail to make the turn.” – Helen Keller

The only way to fail or think you have reached the end of your journey is to give up on going any further.

  1. “When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” – Henry Ford

These words of encouragement are for anyone who feels stuck. When life throws everything at you – including the kitchen sink – remember what Henry Ford said. You, too, can be a force against nature and push through strong, opposing forces.

  1. “Our ability to handle life’s challenges is a measure of our strength of character.” – Les Brown

Don’t let life’s challenges get you down. Rise up to meet them, stare them in the eye, and tackle the problem at hand. It will build character.

  1. “Perspective is everything when you are experiencing the challenges of life.” – Joni Eareckson Tada

Perspective can make a challenge either the worst thing in the world or an opportunity for improvement.

  1. “A well-developed sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to your steps as you walk the tightrope of life.” – William Arthur Ward

A good sense of humor will get you through many of life’s challenges.

Words of Encouragement for Reaching Your Goals

Words of Encouragement for Reaching Your Goals

  1. “Start where you are, use what you have.” – Arthur Ashe

When you want to reach your goals, you have to start somewhere. Don’t wait for some magical, perfect beginning, just start. Where you are. With what you have. And then build from there.

  1. “You dream. You plan. You reach. There will be obstacles. There will be doubters. There will be mistakes. But with hard work, with belief, with confidence and trust in yourself and those around you, there are no limits.” – Michael Phelps

These words of encouragement from Olympic swimmer, Michael Phelps, highlight the importance of believing in yourself while working hard.

  1. “Inspiration does exist, but it must find you working.” – Pablo Picasso

Inspiration alone won’t help you reach your goals. Hard work is a must.

  1. “Success isn’t about the end result, it’s about what you learn along the way.” – Vera Wang

Success can be defined a number of ways. But it really is the journey that matters and not the destination.

  1. “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle

Continuous practice makes for solid improvement. Keep going.

  1. “If you don’t build your dream, someone else will hire you to help them build theirs.” – Dhirubhai Ambani

Go after what you want. If you don’t choose to go after your own goals, you’ll be forced to work for someone else’s.

  1. “Be willing to be a beginner every single morning.” – Meister Eckhart

Look at every new day as a fresh start. Even if you’re about to tackle the same old same old, look at it in a brand new way, as though you were just beginning.

  1. “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius

Just keep going.

  1. “Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.” – Earl Nightingale

It can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking, “there’s not enough time,” but the fact is, there is plenty of time. It’s what you do with that time. It’s ticking by either way.

  1. “Make at least one definite move daily toward your goal.” – Bruce Lee

The compound effect: do something every day that your future self will thank you for. Eventually, even when done little by little, you’ll have gained distance, in what looks like leaps and bounds.

  1. “Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything.” – Napoleon Hill

These words of encouragement for reaching your goals are to remind you to pursue them with action. Hopes, wishes, and dreams are ignited from the passion you have about something, but it is the desire to do something with that passion, hope, or dream that drives you toward success.

  1. “I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has had to overcome while trying to succeed.” – Booker T. Washington

Success happens on many levels. How people reach their success is often more of a testament to the success than simply the act of reaching the goal.

  1. “Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.” – Oprah Winfrey

Make each step of your life a deliberate, positive move, and every step you make will be your best.

  1. “The successful man will profit from his mistakes and try again in a different way.” – Dale Carnegie

On the way to reaching your goals you’ll come up against adversity, challenges, failures, and setbacks. Use them. Turn your mistakes or losses into gains by learning from them.

General Words of Encouragement

General Words of Encouragement

  1. “Don’t count the days, make the days count.” – Muhammad Ali

What matters most is the present moment. Make the best of your present without worrying about the future or living in the past.

  1. “Some days there won’t be a song in your heart. Sing anyway.” – Emory Austin

These words of encouragement are to remind you that sometimes you have to dig deep to turn your mood around. But it’s possible. It’s your choice.

  1. “We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell

Things just don’t always go the way you want or even the way you planned. Life sometimes takes you on a detour. Go with the flow. You never know what opportunities may be waiting for you.

  1. “The inner fire is the most important thing mankind possesses.” – Edith Sodergran

Passion. Desire. Your inner fire will drive you forward. This encouragement quote is to remind you how important it is to keep the inner fire burning bright.

  1. “When you change your thoughts, remember to also change your world.” – Norman Vincent Peale

As you turn your thoughts to the positive side, follow through with positive actions as well.

  1. “The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” – Amelia Earhart

Long before Nike whispered those three words, “just do it,” aviation pioneer and best-selling author, Amelia Earhart had it right – in order for it to get done, you do have to “just” do it.

  1. “Courage is like a muscle. We strengthen it by use.” – Ruth Gordo

These words of encouragement are to remind you that though courage does not take strength, courage is strength and by practicing an act of courage, you become stronger.

  1. “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anais Nin

Courage allows you to explore more of your world.

  1. “Don’t worry about failures. Worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.” – Jack Canfield

At the end of the day, failure isn’t a big deal. It’s a part of the process. But if you don’t even try, then you may miss out on opportunities that could positively change your life.

  1. “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” – Brené Brown

Encourage yourself, friends, and family to go beyond their comfort zone. You may be surprised with the power you hold.

  1. “You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.” – Robin Williams

There is something in each of us that makes us different than everyone else. Famous comedian and actor, Robin Williams, touched many lives with his own spark of madness. Others need what only you have.

  1. “Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.” – Ingrid Bergman

These words of encouragement are to remind you that happiness is a choice.

  1. “A successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.” – David Brinkley

Success is frequently built off of failures, insults, setbacks, and disappointments.

  1. “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” – Dan Millman

Change is going to happen whether you want it to or not. The key to change is accepting it, going with it, and creating something great from it.

  1. “It’s what you do when you aren’t motivated that determines success or failure.” – Ed Mylett

Motivation doesn’t last forever, especially when you are knee-deep in menial tasks. Discipline is what will take you along your journey.

  1. “When things go wrong, as they sometimes will, when the road you’re trudging seems all uphill, when the funds are low and the debts are high, and you want to smile but you have to sigh, when care is pressing you down a bit – rest if you must, but don’t you quit.” – Edgar Albert Guest

From the poem, “Don’t Quit,” don’t quit. The only way to fail is to give up. Just keep going. Do not quit. You got this.


Whenever you need to share words of encouragement with a friend or loved one (or even yourself!), make it more impactful with a FruitFlowers® gift bundle. Choose one of our top-selling FruitFlowers® combinations or build your own gift bundle by choosing a gorgeous flower bouquet and decadent chocolate covered fruits.

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