The Top 10 Les Brown Quotes

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Les Brown Quotes

Les Brown is a renowned motivational speaker and author whose words have inspired countless individuals to achieve their goals and live fulfilling lives. His quotes often serve as catalysts for personal and professional transformation. They are deeply rooted in his life experiences, from humble beginnings to global recognition, making them relatable and impactful. In this article, we will go over the top 10 Les Brown quotes.

Top Les Brown Quotes

1. “Shoot for the moon, and if you miss, you will still be among the stars.”

This well-known quote by Les Brown encourages people to aim high in life. The “moon” symbolizes our highest goals, the peak of our ambitions. The point is clear: set your sights on something grand and transformative.

The backdrop for this quote is usually personal and professional development. Les Brown employs this phrase to rouse individuals into transcending their limitations, whether they are mental, physical, or environmental.

The layered meaning of the quote is one of its strongest elements. While it spurs you to target the “moon,” it also assures you that failing to reach that pinnacle isn’t a total loss—you’ll be “among the stars.” Essentially, the effort alone puts you ahead.

Psychologically, setting high goals can be incredibly effective. It causes a shift in how you view obstacles and challenges. You become more resilient and focused because what you try to attain is meaningful.

This quote also challenges societal fears about failure. We often aim low to avoid disappointment, but this quote flips that mindset. Instead, it encourages taking calculated risks for the sake of extraordinary achievements.

2. “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”

Les Brown’s quote challenges the widely held belief that age is a barrier to new pursuits. “You are never too old” is a direct counter to the societal norms that often discourage people, especially those who are older, from setting new goals or aspirations.

The phrase “to set another goal or to dream a new dream” broadens the scope of possibilities. It isn’t just about one specific type of goal; it could be anything from learning a new skill to pursuing a different career. Essentially, the quote pushes you to keep redefining your life’s ambitions, irrespective of age.

Contextually, Les Brown often shares this gem of wisdom within discussions about personal growth and overcoming self-imposed limitations. It’s mainly aimed at those who feel they’ve missed their chance to pursue their passions or talents due to age.

The quote’s significance is amplified by its universal applicability. Whether you’re in your late 20s worried about a career change or in your 60s pondering picking up a new hobby, the message remains pertinent. Age, according to Brown, should not be a restricting factor in planning your life’s next chapter.

Brown’s quote also promotes lifelong learning and growth. The idea that you can set a new goal or dream a new dream at any age encourages perpetual self-improvement. In a society that sometimes overlooks people as they age, valuing youth over experience, this quote serves as a strong counter-narrative.

3. “Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you become your reality.”

This quote is a blunt reminder that the judgments of others should not define who you are. It argues against external validation, making the case for inner self-worth. Essentially, Les Brown is telling us that opinions are just that—opinions—and not facts that should shape our lives.

Les Brown often deploys this statement in the context of personal empowerment and self-confidence. It’s a staple in his motivational speeches and literature aimed at helping people break free from self-limiting beliefs. He’s trying to jolt people into taking control of their own narratives rather than letting outsiders write their stories.

The idea behind the quote is especially relevant today when social media often amplifies opinions to feel like general consensus. One tweet, one comment, can sometimes feel like an overwhelming judgment. But Brown’s quote urges you to separate opinion from fact, to guard your sense of self against unfounded criticism.

At its core, the quote wrestles with the psychological toll of caring too much about what other people think. This can manifest as stress, low self-esteem, or even severe anxiety and depression. Understanding the essence of this quote can be a significant step toward mental well-being.

It also calls into question the cultural importance often given to external validation. Be it likes on a social media post or praises at a community event, external validation is often seen as the ultimate goal. The quote acts as a counterforce to this aspect of contemporary culture.

Another angle to consider is the dynamic between power and self-perception. If you allow someone’s opinion to dictate your reality, you give away your power. It’s as if you’re handing over the keys to your self-worth to someone else, which is a precarious place.

4. “In every day, there are 1,440 minutes. That means we have 1,440 daily opportunities to make a positive impact.”

This quote is a vivid reminder of the abundant chances we have every day to make a meaningful difference. Les Brown highlights the potential in each minute, urging us to recognize time as an asset full of possibilities.

Les Brown often employs this quote when discussing productivity and seizing the day. The idea is that each minute is a fresh slate, a new window for action. Whether it’s improving yourself, helping others, or both, every moment counts.

The emphasis on the specific number, 1,440 minutes, makes the abstraction of time more tangible. By breaking down the day into minutes, Brown points out that opportunities are numerous, almost overwhelming in their abundance. He argues against procrastination by showing that time is a resource one can’t afford to squander.

Interestingly, the quote also offers a subtle insight into how impactful small deeds can be. It’s not just the grand gestures but also the modest acts that can make a significant difference. Holding a door for someone or sharing a smile can be as meaningful as more significant acts of kindness.

While the quote primarily focuses on positivity, it carries an implicit message about the repercussions of inaction or negativity. With so many opportunities, wasting or using them for negative purposes is a tragic squandering of potential.

5. “Our ability to handle life’s challenges is a measure of our strength of character.”

This quote by Les Brown addresses the relationship between facing adversity and developing personal integrity. It postulates that the way we manage challenges reflects our true self, our values, and our resilience.

Often cited in the context of self-improvement and personal growth seminars, this quote resonates with anyone dealing with setbacks. Challenges, according to Brown, are not just obstacles; they are opportunities for growth and character development.

Les Brown’s emphasis on “strength of character” pushes us to ponder what exactly constitutes this trait. It includes qualities like integrity, courage, and resilience. These are not just abstract qualities; they come alive when we are in the throes of a difficult situation.

The quote subtly dissects the human experience into tests and triumphs. Life’s challenges serve as practical exams to see if we can embody the virtues we claim to possess. The challenges are a mirror, reflecting who we indeed are when stripped of pretense.

Notably, the quote doesn’t say that facing difficulties makes us strong; it says it reveals our strength. The implication is that the capability to handle adversity is already within us. Difficult situations merely provide a stage for these qualities to manifest.

6. “When life knocks you down, try to land on your back. Because if you can look up, you can get up. Let your reason get you back up.”

This quote by Les Brown is a powerful mantra for resilience and determination. It addresses a universal human experience—facing setbacks and disappointments. The quote posits that our attitude towards such adversities determines whether we remain down or rise again.

The first part, “When life knocks you down, try to land on your back,” is about perspective. It’s not about the fall but how you handle it. Landing on your back signifies a conscious effort to view setbacks as temporary, not as defining moments.

The phrase “Because if you can look up, you can get up” speaks to the idea that there’s always hope if you maintain a perspective that allows for it. This isn’t just about physical posture; it’s a metaphor for an optimistic outlook. When you can see beyond the present moment’s difficulties, you see opportunities to rise.

“Let your reason get you back up” is the core of this message. Here, Les Brown is saying that setbacks should be met not just with emotion but with reason. It’s not enough to want to get up; there must be a compelling reason or purpose that drives you. This could be family, career aspirations, personal goals, or even a broader cause.

7. “You don’t get what you want in life. You get who you are!”

This quote by Les Brown underscores a profound truth about personal development and achievement. It challenges the common notion that life gives us what we wish for, instead stressing that we attract what reflects our inner self.

At the heart of the quote is the idea that you are a magnet for your experiences. Your personality, habits, and behaviors define the reality you create. This challenges us to scrutinize not just our goals but the traits we need to cultivate to achieve them.

This statement ties in nicely with numerous psychological theories. For instance, the Law of Attraction suggests that positive or negative thoughts bring positive or negative experiences. Meanwhile, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy posits that your thoughts influence your behavior, affecting your life outcomes.

The quote also offers a proactive approach to life. Instead of lamenting about not getting what you want, focus on improving yourself. The critical takeaway is to invest in yourself, knowing that change comes from within.

8. “If you set goals and go after them with all the determination you can muster, your gifts will take you places that will amaze you.”

Les Brown presents this quote within his overarching theme of self-empowerment and the pursuit of success. He suggests that the combination of clearly set goals and fierce determination is the key to unlocking one’s full potential.

The quote emphasizes the importance of goal setting as a foundational step. Without goals, it’s easy to drift aimlessly. Goals give you a purpose, a reason to wake up every morning ready to tackle the day.

Determination is highlighted as equally vital. Goals without the drive to achieve them are simply dreams. Determination converts that theoretical possibility into a lived reality. Brown posits that you should go after your goals “with all the determination you can muster,” advocating for an all-in approach.

The term “your gifts” refers to innate abilities or talents. Everybody has something unique to bring to the table. Brown stresses that these natural abilities have their own form of magnetic pull. They attract opportunities, experiences, and successes that you might not have been able to fathom before.

The expression “places that will amaze you” is particularly captivating. Brown isn’t simply stating that you’ll achieve your goals; he’s saying the journey will exceed your expectations. It’s a nod to the unpredictable, transformative power of earnest effort.

9. “Life has no limitations, except the ones you make.”

Les Brown deploys this quote within a larger narrative of self-empowerment and overcoming obstacles. The idea is that life’s limitations are often self-imposed rather than fixed realities.

The statement “Life has no limitations” serves as a direct counterpoint to societal norms that often box us into specific roles or expectations. Here, Brown is taking a stand against the idea that your background, upbringing, or circumstances dictate what you can or cannot achieve.

By adding “except the ones you make,” Brown zeroes in on personal responsibility. It moves the onus from external circumstances to individual choices. If you perceive a limitation, it’s often because you’ve allowed that perception to take root.

The quote suggests that our thoughts and attitudes can function as either barriers or gateways. If you think you can’t do something, then you’ve already imposed that limitation on yourself. Conversely, if you believe you can, you’re more likely to find a way to make it happen.

This also implies that limitations can be undone. The limitations you “make” are constructs, which means they can be deconstructed. Brown advocates for self-examination and self-adjustment to redefine what’s possible in your life.

Brown isn’t saying that real obstacles don’t exist. Everyone faces challenges, and some are more daunting than others. However, according to Brown, viewing these challenges as insurmountable limitations is a choice.

The phrase “you make” is an empowering one. It implies agency, giving you the driver’s seat in your journey through life. You’re not a passive victim of circumstance but an active participant who can shape your path.

The quote could serve as a motivational tool for educational and professional settings alike. For instance, teachers and managers could use it to inspire self-belief and a more active approach to problem-solving among students and staff.

10. “Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.”

Les Brown’s quote delves into the internal struggle between our ambitions and our fears. He suggests that fear is a significant obstacle, preventing many from reaching their full potential.

“Living our fears” indicates a life dominated by worries and anxieties. This isn’t a passing emotion; it’s an all-encompassing state that affects choices, actions, and overall well-being. People stay in their comfort zones, avoiding situations that might trigger their fears.

“Living our dreams,” on the other hand, encapsulates an existence motivated by hopes and aspirations. When one is living their dreams, they are likely engaged in activities that fulfill them, willing to take risks and step into the unknown.

Brown employs the phrase “too many of us” to underscore the universality of this internal conflict. It suggests that he, too, grapples with it, thereby inviting an empathetic relationship between him and his audience.

The emotional toll of living in fear can be heavy. It could lead to negative mental health outcomes such as stress or anxiety, while striving for one’s dreams typically brings a sense of satisfaction and happiness.

Brown’s statement is a reflective prompt, asking us to consider how fears influence our decisions and limit our lives. It’s not just about awareness but about inspiring action to break free from these self-imposed shackles.

Our fears are often magnified, making potential setbacks appear insurmountable. The quote serves as a reminder that living in fear is akin to facing defeat without ever having entered the battle.


Brown’s quotes focus on themes such as ambition, resilience, and the human potential for transformation. Each quote offers a unique perspective on how to confront life’s challenges and seize opportunities. Emphasizing high aims, the importance of age, or the strength of self-belief, these quotes serve to inspire not just contemplation but also action.

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Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.