Since I have been emailing friends for over 15 years with quotations, and keep a post of quotations (wordecho.blogspot.com), I have been asked by quite a friends to compile a list of quotations that would best describe the characteristics of an entrepreneur since it seems like most "Best" lists just seem to be a Hodge-podge of quotations without any real focus.
In a previous post (Traits of an Entrepreneur), I listed the 18 traits of an entrepreneur which are: Creative, Perseverance, Self-Confident, Intuitive, Independent, Self-Motivated, Optimistic, Focused, Forward-Looking, Decisive, Enterprising, Disciplined, Cooperative, Results Oriented, Energetic, Persuasive and Organized. This list of quotations highlight these 18 characteristics.
1. “Creative people are at their most productive when they appear to be doing nothing.”
2. “Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.”
--Franklin D. Roosevelt
3. “The creative urge is the demon that will not accept anything second rate.”
--Agnes de Mille
4. “When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth.”
5. “When you are happy, you are free; when you are free, you can be creative; when you are creative, your divine self comes out.”
6. "Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."
--Robert F. Kennedy
7. "Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint you can on it."
8. "I am seeking; I am striving; I am in it with all my heart."
-- Vincent van Gogh
9. “The most splendid achievement of all is the constant striving to surpass yourself and to be worthy of your own approval.”
10. "Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second."
11. "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go."
12. "Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow."
--Mary Anne Radmacher
13. “Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into air."
--John Quincy Adams
14. “A champion is someone who gets up when he can't.”
15. "Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful."
-- Joshua J. Marine
16. “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.”
17. "Victory belongs to the most persevering."
18. "Diamonds are only lumps of coal that stuck at it no matter how much heat or pressure they faced."
19. "The rewards for those who persevere far exceed the pain that precedes the victory."
--Karen Bliss Livingston
20. “With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable.”
--Thomas Foxwell Buxton
21. "We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world."
22. “If I have lost confidence in myself, I have the universe against me.”
--Ralph Waldo Emerson
23. “To succeed in life, you need two things: ignorance and confidence."
24. "Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong."
--Peter T. McIntyre
25. "You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face."
-- Eleanor Roosevelt
26. "Confidence is the hinge on the door to success."
--Mary O'Hare Dumas
27. "We need to be willing to let our intuition guide us, and then be willing to follow that guidance directly and fearlessly."
28. "Intuition does not come to an unprepared mind."
29. “Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.”
30. “Think wrongly, if you please, but in all cases think for yourself."
31. “Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else."
32. "I care not so much what I am to others as what I am to myself."
--Michel de Montaigne
33. “Nature never said to me: Do not be poor. Still less did she say: Be rich. Her cry to me was always: Be independent."
34. “The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”
35. “It is hard to free fools from the chains they revere.”
36. "I am pushed by those who believe in me, but motivated by those who don't."
37. “Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated.”
38. “Desperation is sometimes as powerful an inspirer as genius.”
39. "It's so hard when I have to, and so easy when I want to."
40. "Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier."
-- Colin Powell
41. "One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn't pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself."
-- Lucille Ball
42. “Optimism is essential to achievement and it is also the foundation of courage and true progress.”
--Nicholas Murray Butler
43. "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist see the opportunity in every difficulty."
-- Winston Churchill
44. “Committing to a goal does not always bring action, yet committing to an action will invariably bring you to your goal.”
45. “Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun's rays do not burn until brought to a focus.”
--Alexander Graham Bell
46. “A mind troubled by doubt cannot focus on the course to victory."
47. "Learn how to separate the majors and the minors. A lot of people don't do well simply because they major in minor things."
48. "Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal."
49. “There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept."
50. “The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.
51. "Live out of your imagination, not your history."
52. “Worrying about things you cannot control is folly. Focus only on those few things you have any control over, and your life becomes much simpler.”
53. "Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence."
54. "Talent hits a target no one else can hit; genius hits a target no one else can see."
55. "Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
56. "If you don't have a vision for the future, then your future is threatened to be a repeat of the past."
57. “If you are not a trend setter, at least be able to exploit the ones you see.”
58. "Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements."
59. “The mark of mediocrity is to look for precedent.”
60. "When you run away from fear, it grows. When you move toward fear, it recedes. As you move forward, despite all the anxieties and uncertainties you feel, you'll develop courage."
61. “Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary."
62. "One of the illusions of life is that the present hour is not the critical, decisive one."
--Ralph Waldo Emerson
63. "The perfect day: going to bed with a dream and waking up with a purpose.”
64. “If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.”
65. “Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”
--Ralph Waldo Emerson
66. "In any moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing."
67. “No matter how much we think about something, in the end, the decision is made on how we feel.”
68. “A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now.”
69. "No endeavor that is worthwhile is simple in prospect; if it is right, it will be simple in retrospect."
-- William Teller
70. “Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises.”
71. “It never ceases to amaze me how the universe will conspire to help people succeed when they pour their hearts into an endeavor”
72. “I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor."
--Henry David Thoreau
73. “Endurance is one of the most difficult disciplines, but it is to the one who endures that the final victory comes.”
74. “Some people regard discipline as a chore. For me, it is a kind of order that sets me free to fly."
75. “People think I am disciplined. It is not discipline. It is devotion."
76. "Power consists in one’s capacity to link his will with the purpose of others, to lead by reason and a gift of cooperation."
-- Woodrow Wilson
77. “Leadership conceives and articulates goals that lift people out of their petty preoccupations and unite them in pursuit of objectives worthy of their best efforts.”
78. "Teamwork is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results."
-- Andrew Carnegie
79. "The shortest and best way to make your fortune is to let people see clearly that it is in their interests to promote yours."
-- Jean de La Bruyère
80. "The greatest compliment you can receive is being counted on."
--John C. Maxwell
81. “There is no greater success as when you turn your enemy into your ally.”
82. "Success is not about the income, it is about the outcome."
83. "Success represents the 1% of your work that results from the 99% that is called failure."
84. “Success is often the result of taking a misstep in the right direction.”
85. “Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear."
--Norman Vincent Peale
86. “Profit is the result of risks wisely selected."
--Frederick Barnard Hawley
87. “You will recognize your own path when you come upon it because you will suddenly have all the energy and imagination you will ever need.”
88. “I arise full of eagerness and energy, knowing well what achievement lies ahead of me.”
89. “Life begets life. Energy becomes energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich."
90. "Energy and persistence conquer all things."
91. “Out of need springs desire, and out of desire springs the energy and the will to win."
92. “To be persuasive we must be believable; to be believable we must be credible; to be credible we must be truthful."
--Edward R. Murrow
93. "Business today consists in persuading crowds."
--T. S. Eliot
94. “People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.”
– John C. Maxwell
95. "To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair convincing."
96. “Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.”
97. "A true leader follows the dreams of those he leads."
98. “Our minds become magnetized with the dominating thoughts we hold in our minds, and these magnets attract to us the forces, the people, the circumstances of life which harmonize with the nature of our dominating thoughts.”
99. “Out of clutter, find simplicity; out of discord, find harmony; in the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
100. “Harmony makes small things grow; lack of it makes great things decay.”