“A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.” – Nelson Mandela.
Nelson Mandela was known for his wisdom, compassion, and courage. He dedicated his life to fighting for equality and justice in South Africa and continues to inspire people around the world with his words of wisdom even after his death. Read on for some of our favorite Nelson Mandela quotes that will inspire you to be your best self.
Nelson Mandela Quotes
What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived; it is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” -Nelson Mandela
I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
Few things make the life of a parent more rewarding and sweet as successful children.
It always seems impossible until it’s done.
Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.
Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.
The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.
May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.
Blind pursuit of cheap popularity has nothing to do with revolution. – Nelson Mandela
There is no passion to be found playing small in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.
A winner is a dreamer who never gives up.
Let it never be said by future generations that indifference, cynicism or selfishness made us fail to live up to the ideals of humanism which the Nobel Peace Prize encapsulates.” –Nelson Mandela
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.
Sometimes, it falls upon a generation to be great. You can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.
One of the things I learned when I was negotiating was that until I changed myself, I could not change others.
Those who conduct themselves with morality, integrity and consistency need not fear the forces of inhumanity and cruelty.
A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.
There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to helping others without expecting anything in return.
You sharpen your ideas by reducing yourself to the level of the people you are with, and a sense of humor and complete relaxation, even when you’re discussing serious things, does help to mobilize friends around you. And I love that.” —Nelson Mandela
After climbing a great hill. One only finds that there are many more hills to climb.
For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.
“Overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity, and a decent life. While poverty persists, there is no true freedom.” –Nelson Mandela
If I had my time over I would do the same again. So would any man who dares call himself a man.
Difficulties break some men but make others.
A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of.
The values of human solidarity that once drove our quest for a humane society seem to have been replaced, or are being threatened, by crass materialism and pursuit of social goals of instant gratification.” –Nelson Mandela
I never lose. I either win or learn.
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.
A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but its lowest ones.
Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished.
No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion.
It is never my custom to use words lightly. If twenty-seven years in prison have done anything to us, it was to use the silence of solitude to make us understand how precious words are and how real speech is in its impact on the way people live and die.” –Nelson Mandela
Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace.
Live life as though nobody is watching, and express yourself as though everyone is listening.
I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.
One of the most difficult things is not to change society — but to change yourself.
When the history of our times is written, will we be remembered as the generation that turned our backs in a moment of global crisis or will it be recorded that we did the right thing?” –Nelson Mandela
If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.
We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.
When people are determined they can overcome anything.
Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.
If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.
Your playing small does not serve the world. Who are you not to be great?
The greatest glory in living is not in falling, but in rising every time we fall.
Fools multiply when wise men are silent.
Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world.
Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people.
As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
When a man is denied the right to live the life he believes in, he has no choice but to become an outlaw.
People respond in accordance to how you treat them.
Forgiveness liberates the soul. It removes fear. That is why it is such a powerful weapon.
You can start changing our world for the better daily, no matter how small the action.
Poverty is not an accident. Like slavery and apartheid, it is man-made and can be removed by the actions of human beings.
Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace.
Lead from the back — and let others believe they are in front.
If you want the cooperation of humans around you, you must make them feel they are important, and you do that by being genuine and humble.