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Creative quotes and quotations
On Persistence...


The winner of a long race, as creativity can be, is not the person with the best idea, but the person who finishes first. The world is littered with abandoned works and too-late arrivals. So knuckle down! Get on with it and never, ever give in!

See also

action, belief, commitment*, effort*, enthusiasm*, failure, goals, passion, progress, success


‘God is with those who persevere.’

— The Koran, ch. VIII

‘Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.’

John Adams

‘Start by doing what is necessary; then do what is possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.’

St. Francis of Assisi

‘Patience is the companion of wisdom.’

St. Augustine

‘They are ill discoverers that think there is no land when they can see nothing but sea.’

Francis Bacon

‘The barriers are not erected which can say to aspiring talents and industry, "Thus far and no farther".’

Ludwig van Beethoven

‘The most successful men in the end are those whose success is the result of steady accretion. … It is the man who carefully advances step by step, with his mind becoming wider and wider—and progressively better able to grasp any theme or situation—persevering in what he knows to be practical, and concentrating his thought upon it, who is bound to succeed in the greatest degree.’

Alexander Graham Bell

Innovation—any new idea—by definition will not be accepted at first. It takes repeated attempts, endless demonstrations, and monotonous rehearsals before innovation can be accepted and internalized by an organization. This requires "courageous patience.".’

Warren Bennis

‘Be like a postage stamp—stick to one thing until you get there.’

Josh Billings

‘Victory belongs to the most persevering.’

Napoleon Boneparte

Failure is the line of least persistence.’

Alfred Brandt

‘Flaming enthusiasm, backed up by horse sense and persistence, is the quality that most frequently makes for success.’

Dale Carnegie

‘Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.’

Dale Carnegie

‘Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense.’

Winston Churchill

‘...we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.’

Winston Churchill

‘It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop.’


‘Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.’

Calvin Coolidge

‘There is nothing so far removed from us to be beyond our reach, or so far hidden that we cannot discover it.’

René Descartes

‘You have to have the will not to jump at the first solution, because the really elegant solution might be right around the corner.’

Ray Dolby

‘Patience is a necessary ingredient of genius.’

Benjamin Disraeli

‘Get a good idea and stay with it. Dog it, and work at it until it's done right.’

Walt Disney

‘Results! Why man, I have gotten a lot of results. I know several thousand things that won’t work.’

Thomas Alva Edison

‘Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.’

Thomas Alva Edison

‘Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.’

Thomas Alva Edison

‘Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.’

Albert Einstein

‘It’s not that I’m so smart it’s just that I stay with problems longer.’

Albert Einstein

‘I think and think for months and years. Ninety-nine times, the conclusion is false. The hundredth time I am right.’

Albert Einstein

‘Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience.’

Ralph Waldo Emerson

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damn fool about it.’

W. C. Fields

‘A setback is an opportunity to begin again more intelligently.’

Henry Ford

‘Energy and persistence conquer all things.’

Benjamin Franklin

‘We all exist in an ocean of possibilities. Some swim, some drown, some swim better than others...They are the creators of the universe.’

Greg Fergus

Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.’

Conrad Hilton

‘Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.’

Samuel Johnson

‘You’ve got to say, "I think that if I keep working at this and want it badly enough I can have it." It’s called perseverance.’

Lee Iacocca

‘We can do anything we want to so long as we stick at it.’

Helen Keller

‘For all of us today, the battle is in our hands. The road ahead is not altogether a smooth one. There are no broad highways to lead us easily and inevitably to quick solutions. We must keep going.’

Martin Luther King

‘Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other one thing.’

Abraham Lincoln

‘After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.’

Nelson Mandela

‘One must have the time to look, to have the patience to hear what the material has to say…and then an openness to let it come to you.’

Barbara McClintock

‘The obscure we see eventually, the completely apparent takes longer.’

Edward Murrow

‘Many are stubborn in pursuit of the path they have chosen, few in pursuit of the goal.’

Friedrich Nietzsche

‘Defeat doesn’t finish a man–quit does. A man is not finished when he is defeated. He’s finished when when he quits.’

Richard Nixon

‘Perseverance is more prevailing than violence; and many things which cannot be overcome when they are together, yield themselves up when taken little by little.’


‘The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me.’

Ayn Rand

‘The difficult is that which can be done immediately; the impossible that which takes a little longer.’

George Santayana

‘I’m extraordinarily patient provided I get my own way in the end.’

Margaret Thatcher



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