Quintessential Quotes – 15 Perfect Passages from Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou, among other things, was an author, poet, dancer and civil rights activist who worked alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.  She authored dozens of books, including 7 autobiographies, which gives a glimpse of the amazing collection of life experiences she lived during the course of her 86 years of life.

She was an incredibly accomplished woman.  She spoke 6 languages, won 3 Grammy Awards, received more than 50 honorary degrees, and was the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Maya had a gift with words, as evidenced in her books and poetry.  Below are 15 perfect passages from Maya Angelou.

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.”

“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.”

“Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option.”

“If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.”

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.”

“Nothing will work unless you do.”

“If you don’t like something, change it.  If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”

“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.”

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

“Love recognizes no barriers.  It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.”

“It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive.  Forgive everybody.”

“Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.”

“My wish for you is that you continue.  Continue to be who and how you are, to astonish a mean world with your acts of kindness.”

“I’ve learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life.”

“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.”

Maya Angelou pursued life to the very fullest.  She lived the full range of the human experience from poverty and violence, to sharing the stage with world leaders.  I hope her words inspire you to pursue the life you truly desire.

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