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8 Inspirational Quotes From Legendary Poet Maya Angelou To Lift Your Spirits

8 Inspirational Quotes From Legendary Poet Maya Angelou To Lift Your Spirits

The influence of her words remain strong to this day!

Maya Angelou was a poet, author and civil rights activist who inspired millions of people around the world with her words. Her poetry and prose explored themes of identity, love, and resilience, and her powerful voice provided messages that continue to resonate with readers and listeners today. Her contributions aren’t only limited to writing, as she was also a talented woman with a career in acting, singing, composing, and even directing, The Poetry Foundation reports. 

In 2010, Maya Angelou was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Forever President Barack Obama, adding to her already decorated list of achievements and awards. In 2013, she received an honorary National Book Award for her contributions as a literary pillar in the community. A year after her awarding, Ms. Angelou passed away at the age of 86. 

A griot and a true voice of freedom for people everywhere, her impact will never be forgotten. In honor of what would’ve been her 95th birthday, here are 8 inspirational and powerful quotes by Maya Angelou to lift your spirits.


"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." 

This quote reminds us of the power of kindness and empathy. It encourages us to treat others with compassion and to make an effort to leave a positive impression on everyone we encounter.


"We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated."

Maya Angelou's life was marked by numerous struggles and obstacles, but she never allowed them to keep her down. Her words encourage us to persevere through tough times and to remember that our failures do not define us.


"Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it."

This quote  carries a message that true success is not just about external achievements but also about inner satisfaction and fulfillment. It encourages us to pursue our passions and to be proud of who we are and what we do.


"I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it."

Maya Angelou's resilience and strength in the face of adversity is truly inspiring. It reminds us to view challenges as opportunities for growth and to never allow them to diminish our spirit.


"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude."

Let us remember to take control of our lives and approach challenges with a positive and proactive mindset. Never forget that we have the power to shape our own experiences.


"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."

Never forget that while we may receive many blessings in life, the greatest joy is to give. So give back in any way you can. Give the world something grand and give the universe something to make magic with!


"I've learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life."

This quote reminds us of the importance of finding purpose and meaning in our lives. It encourages us to pursue our passions and to prioritize the things that truly matter to us.


"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."

May we remember to be intentional about the experiences we seek out and surround ourselves with positivity and inspiration. Remember that everything we encounter in life shapes who we are, and encourages us to make those experiences count.

Despite years after her passing, Maya Angelou’s  influence and presence hasn’t been diminished in the slightest. Her words still seek to serve as inspiration and guidance to people all over the world. 

Thank you Mother Angelou.

Cover photo: 8 inspirational quotes from legendary poet Maya Angelou to lift your spirits/Photo Courtesy of Moneta Sleet Jr./Ebony Collection/Associated Press Images