35+ Quotes About Courage to Motivate and Inspire

Courage is often found in the quiet moments with no audience.

Sad Quotes
Photo: Ben Roberts Photography/Getty Images

Fairytales and folklore would have us believe that courage is reserved for superheroes and crusaders. But it's simpler than that. Courage is often found in the quiet moments with no audience. It's a teenager fighting through anxiety, a single mom providing for her family, or someone standing up for what they believe. Though sometimes life happens, and we don't feel particularly courageous. Read through these quotes about courage in the moments you need inspiration and strength to get through life's inevitable struggles. Quotes about strength and courage will help to fill your heart and lift your head in the weak moments. Read through the list of sayings and hold on to the one that speaks to your soul. With a wide range of authors and speakers included, you're sure to find something just right. Inspirational courage quotes could be just what you need in this season; let them awaken your inner strength.

01 of 36
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” ― Nelson Mandela
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” ― Nelson Mandela. Southern Living

"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."

― Nelson Mandela

02 of 36
“Courage isn’t having the strength to go on – it is going on when you don’t have strength.” ― Napoleon Bonaparte
“Courage isn’t having the strength to go on – it is going on when you don’t have strength.” ― Napoleon Bonaparte. Southern Living

"Courage isn't having the strength to go on – it is going on when you don't have strength."

― Napoleon Bonapart

03 of 36
“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
“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. Southern Living

"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

04 of 36
“It is not the strength of the body that counts, but the strength of the spirit.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien
“It is not the strength of the body that counts, but the strength of the spirit.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien. Southern Living

"It is not the strength of the body that counts, but the strength of the spirit."

― J.R.R. Tolkien

05 of 36
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.” ― John Wayne
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.” ― John Wayne. Southern Living

"Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway."

― John Wayne

06 of 36
“Courage doesn’t happen when you have all the answers. It happens when you are ready to face the questions you have been avoiding your whole life.”― Shannon L. Alder
“Courage doesn’t happen when you have all the answers. It happens when you are ready to face the questions you have been avoiding your whole life.”― Shannon L. Alder. Southern Living

"Courage doesn't happen when you have all the answers. It happens when you are ready to face the questions you have been avoiding your whole life."― Shannon L. Alder

07 of 36
“Real courage is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking. Doing the unpopular thing because it’s what you believe, and the heck with everybody.” ― Justin Cronin
“Real courage is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking. Doing the unpopular thing because it’s what you believe, and the heck with everybody.” ― Justin Cronin. Southern Living

"Real courage is doing the right thing when nobody's looking. Doing the unpopular thing because it's what you believe, and the heck with everybody."

― Justin Cronin

08 of 36
“Courage to me is doing something daring, no matter how afraid, insecure, intimidated, alone, unworthy, incapable, ridiculed or whatever other paralyzing emotion you might feel. Courage is taking action….no matter what. So you’re afraid? Be afraid. Be scared silly to the point you’re trembling and nauseous, but do it anyway!” ― Richelle E. Goodrich
“Courage to me is doing something daring, no matter how afraid, insecure, intimidated, alone, unworthy, incapable, ridiculed or whatever other paralyzing emotion you might feel. Courage is taking action….no matter what. So you’re afraid? Be afraid. Be scared silly to the point you’re trembling and nauseous, but do it anyway!” ― Richelle E. Goodrich. Southern Living

"Courage to me is doing something daring, no matter how afraid, insecure, intimidated, alone, unworthy, incapable, ridiculed or whatever other paralyzing emotion you might feel. Courage is taking action….no matter what. So you're afraid? Be afraid. Be scared silly to the point you're trembling and nauseous, but do it anyway!"

― Richelle E. Goodrich

09 of 36
“Courage is about learning how to function despite the fear, to put aside your instincts to run or give in completely to the anger born from fear. Courage is about using your brain and your heart when every cell of your body is screaming at your to fight or flee – and then following through on what you believe is the right thing to do.” ― Jim Butcher
“Courage is about learning how to function despite the fear, to put aside your instincts to run or give in completely to the anger born from fear. Courage is about using your brain and your heart when every cell of your body is screaming at your to fight or flee – and then following through on what you believe is the right thing to do.” ― Jim Butcher. Southern Living

"Courage is about learning how to function despite the fear, to put aside your instincts to run or give in completely to the anger born from fear. Courage is about using your brain and your heart when every cell of your body is screaming at your to fight or flee – and then following through on what you believe is the right thing to do."

― Jim Butcher

10 of 36
“Pride is holding your head up when everyone around you has theirs bowed. Courage is what makes you do it.” ― Bryce Courtenay
“Pride is holding your head up when everyone around you has theirs bowed. Courage is what makes you do it.” ― Bryce Courtenay. Southern Living

"Pride is holding your head up when everyone around you has theirs bowed. Courage is what makes you do it."

― Bryce Courtenay

11 of 36
“Courage is the complement of fear. A man who is fearless cannot be courageous. [He is also a fool.” ― Robert A. Heinlein
“Courage is the complement of fear. A man who is fearless cannot be courageous. [He is also a fool.” ― Robert A. Heinlein. Southern Living

"Courage is the complement of fear. A man who is fearless cannot be courageous. He is also a fool."

― Robert A. Heinlein

12 of 36
“Because no matter what they say, you always have a choice. You just don’t always have the guts to make it.” ― Ray N. Kuili
“Because no matter what they say, you always have a choice. You just don’t always have the guts to make it.” ― Ray N. Kuili. Southern Living

"Because no matter what they say, you always have a choice. You just don't always have the guts to make it."

― Ray N. Kuili

13 of 36
“Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.” ― Victor Hugo
“Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.” ― Victor Hugo. Southern Living

"Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake."

― Victor Hugo

14 of 36
“Courage is not simply one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means at the point of highest reality. ” ― C.S. Lewis
“Courage is not simply one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means at the point of highest reality. ” ― C.S. Lewis. Southern Living

"Courage is not simply one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means at the point of highest reality. "

― C.S. Lewis

15 of 36
“We have to be braver than we think we can be, because God is constantly calling us to be more than we are.” ― Madeleine L’Engle
“We have to be braver than we think we can be, because God is constantly calling us to be more than we are.” ― Madeleine L’Engle. Southern Living

"We have to be braver than we think we can be, because God is constantly calling us to be more than we are."

― Madeleine L'Engle

16 of 36
“Everyone has talent. What’s rare is the courage to follow it to the dark places where it leads.” ― Erica Jong
“Everyone has talent. What’s rare is the courage to follow it to the dark places where it leads.” ― Erica Jong. Southern Living

"Everyone has talent. What's rare is the courage to follow it to the dark places where it leads."

― Erica Jong

17 of 36
“There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.” ― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
“There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.” ― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice. Southern Living

"There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me."

― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

18 of 36
“It’s your life; you don’t need someone’s permission to live the life you want. Be brave to live from your heart.” ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
“It’s your life; you don’t need someone’s permission to live the life you want. Be brave to live from your heart.” ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart. Southern Living

"It's your life; you don't need someone's permission to live the life you want. Be brave to live from your heart."

― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

19 of 36
“You need to have faith in yourself. Be brave and take risks. You don’t have to have it all figured out to move forward.” ― Roy T. Bennett
“You need to have faith in yourself. Be brave and take risks. You don’t have to have it all figured out to move forward.” ― Roy T. Bennett. Southern Living

"You need to have faith in yourself. Be brave and take risks. You don't have to have it all figured out to move forward."

― Roy T. Bennett

20 of 36
“He who jumps into the void owes no explanation to those who stand and watch.” ― Jean-Luc Godard
“He who jumps into the void owes no explanation to those who stand and watch.” ― Jean-Luc Godard. Southern Living

"He who jumps into the void owes no explanation to those who stand and watch."

― Jean-Luc Godard

21 of 36
“Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.” ― W. Clement Stone
“Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.” ― W. Clement Stone. Southern Living

"Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity."

― W. Clement Stone

22 of 36
“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.” ― Maya Angelou
“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.” ― Maya Angelou. Southern Living

"Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can't practice any other virtue consistently."

― Maya Angelou

23 of 36
“Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.” ― August Wilson
“Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.” ― August Wilson. Southern Living

"Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing."

― August Wilson

24 of 36
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ― Anais Nin
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ― Anais Nin. Southern Living

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage."

― Anais Nin

25 of 36
“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.” ― Veronica Roth, Insurgent
“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.” ― Veronica Roth, Insurgent. Southern Living

"No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens."

― Veronica Roth, Insurgent

26 of 36
“A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.” ― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
“A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.” ― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching. Southern Living

"A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live."

― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

27 of 36
“Life is not about living the safer option. Life is about living a life worth living.” ― Robert Thier
“Life is not about living the safer option. Life is about living a life worth living.” ― Robert Thier. Southern Living

"Life is not about living the safer option. Life is about living a life worth living."

― Robert Thier

28 of 36
“Great occasions do not make heroes or cowards; they simply unveil them to the eyes of men. Silently and perceptibly, as we wake or sleep, we grow strong or weak; and last some crisis shows what we have become. ” ― Brooke Foss Westcott
“Great occasions do not make heroes or cowards; they simply unveil them to the eyes of men. Silently and perceptibly, as we wake or sleep, we grow strong or weak; and last some crisis shows what we have become. ” ― Brooke Foss Westcott. Southern Living

"Great occasions do not make heroes or cowards; they simply unveil them to the eyes of men. Silently and perceptibly, as we wake or sleep, we grow strong or weak; and last some crisis shows what we have become. "

― Brooke Foss Westcott

29 of 36
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” ― Winston Churchill
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” ― Winston Churchill. Southern Living

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts."

― Winston Churchill

30 of 36
“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 lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” ― 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 lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt. Southern Living

"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 lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along."

― Eleanor Roosevelt

31 of 36
“Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave.” ― Mary Tyler Moore
“Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave.” ― Mary Tyler Moore. Southern Living

"Take chances, make mistakes. That's how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave."

― Mary Tyler Moore

32 of 36
“We don’t develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.” ― Barbara De Angelis
“We don’t develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.” ― Barbara De Angelis. Southern Living

"We don't develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity."

― Barbara De Angelis

33 of 36
“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” ― Dale Carnegie
“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” ― Dale Carnegie. Southern Living

"Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy." ― Dale Carnegie

34 of 36
“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” ― Maya Angelou
“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” ― Maya Angelou. Southern Living

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

― Maya Angelou

35 of 36
“To share your weakness is to make yourself vulnerable; to make yourself vulnerable is to show your strength.” ― Criss Jami
“To share your weakness is to make yourself vulnerable; to make yourself vulnerable is to show your strength.” ― Criss Jami. Southern Living

"To share your weakness is to make yourself vulnerable; to make yourself vulnerable is to show your strength."

― Criss Jami

36 of 36
“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.” ― Brené Brown
“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.” ― Brené Brown. Southern Living

"Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren't always comfortable, but they're never weakness."

― Brené Brown

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles