Saturday, July 11, 2009

Compilation of Inspiring Quotes on Leadership, Women, Lawyers

In January of this year I added a sidebar widget to showcase a quote each week from a woman leader that I found meaningful. The women quoted include artists, lawyers, journalists, politicians, teachers, scientists, and "ordinary women" such as Anne Frank and Helen Keller. I hope their words of inspiration are as helpful to you as they have been to me. The following quotes were used on this blog from January through June 2009:

Elizabeth Dole
Women share with men the need for personal success, even the taste of power, and no longer are we willing to satisfy those needs through the achievements of surrogates, whether husbands, children, or merely role models.

Margaret Thatcher
If you want anything said, ask a man. If you want something done, ask a woman.

Pearl S. Buck
To find joy in work is to discover the fountain of youth.

Georgia O'Keeffe
I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life -- and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.

Michelle Obama
Service is a limitless opportunity, it is the reason why we breathe.

Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Well-behaved women seldom make history.

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 have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

Sandra Day O'Connor
The power I exert on the court depends on the power of my arguments, not on my gender.

Maria Montessori
Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war.

Marianne Williamson
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?

Dorothy Parker
The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.

Sandra Day O'Connor
We don't accomplish anything in this world alone... and whatever happens is the result of the whole tapestry of one's life and all the weavings of individual threads from one to another that creates something.

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

Sandra Day O'Connor
That's my ranch upbringing. If something is broken, you repair it yourself and you don't care if it's beautiful. You just care if it works.

Katherine Hepburn
When I’ve been unsuccessful, I’ve been controlled. When I’ve been successful, I’ve been in control.

Abigail Adams
These are times in which a genius would wish to live. It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, that great characters are formed.

Jane Goodall
As a small child in England, I had this dream of going to Africa. We didn't have any money and I was a girl, so everyone except my mother laughed at it. When I left school, there was no money for me to go to university, so I went to secretarial college and got a job.

Helen Keller
Life is either a daring adventure, or it is nothing.

Sarah Bernhardt
One should hate very little, because it's extremely fatiguing. One should despise much, forgive often, and never forget. Pardon does not bring with it forgetfulness; at least not for me.

Georgia O'Keeffe
One can not be an American by going about saying that one is an American. It is necessary to feel America, like America, love America and then work.

Molly Ivins
You can't ignore politics, no matter how much you'd like to.

Mae West
Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.

Madeleine Albright
There is a special place in Hell reserved for women who don't help other women.

Eleanor Roosevelt
Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them all yourself.




  1. Nice one..
    evry women must read and follow for an eternal life..
    The Pineal Gland Activator

    Mail :

  2. Thank you for providing quotes of women leaders. I am teaching a course on leadership and was dismayed to find so few leadership quotes by women. On the first three sites I found, there were only quotes by men.

    1. Glad you found it helpful. Now I am inspired to again look for some more good quotes!

  3. Hi Cynthia,

    I just discovered your wonderful site by chance; I’m not a lawyer or a leader, but a peeved woman who wants to prove a point.

    My husband and I just had a juicy row about women and leadership. More precisely, about women who lead -– be it thought-leadership, people-leadership or any other kind of trailblazing stuff -- and who make quotable utterances about their work.

    You see, he has been collecting quotes on excellence and leadership for a work project, and out of the 20-odd he’s come up with, only *two* are from women (one of whom is a ballerina…).

    I asked him to explain this blatant underrepresentation, to which he replied that he’s hunted high and low and couldn’t come up with anything inspiring said by women. I find that hard to believe.

    My (admittedly somewhat churlish) reaction was to point out that Mrs. Einstein, Mrs. Gandhi and Mrs. Cato-the-Elder were probably too busy washing their husbands’ socks and wiping their children’s noses to come up with inspirational sayings. And that women in positions of power just want to get on with it, and don’t need to hog the limelight with clever sound bites.

    But it did irk me that this is apparently the way intelligent, educated, allegedly liberal men in their 40s view us.

    So I plugged “women leadership quotes” into Google and found your site and the nice lists of quotes you’ve been compiling. There were some great ones there, but I must admit – they were mostly about “women,” and womanly concerns such as “hairstyles” (really, Hillary?), “service”, “giving,” “fear,” as well as a few wonderfully whimsical ones (Dorothy Parker et al). But none that struck me as bold and leadership-like.

    So I’m wondering: have you come across any other sayings by bold, fearless, quotable women? Quotes, perhaps, about swimming-against-the-stream, determination, perseverance, truth, strength, inspiration, perspiration and other such lofty ideals? If so, I would be SO grateful if you could share them with us.

    Indeed, perhaps you could put a call out to all your readers, asking each one to contribute just one quote by a strong, independent-minded woman?

    More than wanting to prove my husband wrong (though that would be an added bonus), I am keen to derive inspiration and support from the insights of some of the strong, independent-minded women out there!

    Thank you so much!
    Warm regards,