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44 John Wooden Quotes About Life And Success

John Wooden was not only an All American basketball player, but he was one of the greatest coaches that led UCLA to 7 straight National Championships and won 10 championships out of his 12 years as head coach.

He’s written several books on leadership and success, so I hope you find these John Wooden quotes inspiring and uplifting in today’s post.

Inspirational John Wooden Quotes 

1. “Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books – especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance everyday.”

2. “I think permitting the game to become too physical takes away a little bit of the beauty.”

3. “Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.”

4. “Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming.”

5. “Just do the best you can. No one can do more than that.”

6. “No one can really honestly be the very best, no one.”

7. “Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.”

8. “We can have no progress without change, whether it be basketball or anything else.”

9. “Success is never final, failure is never fatal. It’s courage that counts.”

10. “I was built up from my dad more than anyone else.”

11. “Don’t give up on your dreams, or your dreams will give up on you.”

12. “I’d rather have a lot of talent and a little experience than a lot of experience and a little talent.”

13. “There are many things that are essential to arriving at true peace of mind, and one of the most important is faith, which cannot be acquired without prayer.”

14. “The most important thing in the world is family and love.”

15. “Friendship is two-sided. It isn’t a friend just because someone’s doing something nice for you. That’s a nice person. There’s friendship when you do for each other. It’s like marriage – it’s two-sided.”

inspirational john wooden quotes

Motivational John Wooden Quotes

16. “I think the teaching profession contributes more to the future of our society than any other single profession.”

17. “Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful.”

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18. “You can do more good by being good than any other way.”

19. “I talked to the players and tried to make them aware of what was good and bad, but I didn’t try to run their lives.”

20. “My eyesight is not nearly as good. My hearing is probably going away. My memory is slipping too. But I’m still around.”

21. “Material possessions, winning scores, and great reputations are meaningless in the eyes of the Lord, because He knows what we really are and that is all that matters.”

22. “Defense is a definite part of the game, and a great part of defense is learning to play it without fouling.”

23. “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”

24. “If I am through learning, I am through.”

25. “Whatever you do in life, surround yourself with smart people who’ll argue with you.”

26. “Love is the most important thing in the world. Hate, we should remove it from the dictionary.”

27. “Passion is momentary, love is enduring.”

John Wooden Quotes On Leadership

28. “If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything. I’m positive that a doer makes mistakes.”

29. “I’m glad I was a teacher.”

30. “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?”

31. “There’s as much crookedness as you want to find. There was something Abraham Lincoln said – he’d rather trust and be disappointed than distrust and be miserable all the time. Maybe I trusted too much.”

32. “I found golf was too time consuming, but I did enjoy it.”

33. “I like to spend time in the past, with the things that have been important to me.”

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34. “I’m not going to say I was opposed to the Vietnam War. I’m going to say I’m opposed to war. But I’m also opposed to protests that deny other people their rights.”

John Wooden Quotes About Life

35. “Make each day your masterpiece.”

36. “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. Your character is what you really are while your reputation is more what others think you are.”

37. “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”

38. “Never mistake activity for achievement.”

39. It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”

40. “Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.”

41. “Seek opportunities to show that you care. The smallest gestures often make the biggest difference.”

42. “Don’t whine. Don’t complain. Don’t make excuses.”

43. “If you are afraid to fail, you will never do the things you are capable of doing.”

44. “If you wanna go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, you need a team.”

John Wooden was a legend and inspiration to many and will never be forgotten. Which of these John Wooden quotes did you find to be most inspiring? Let us know in the comments below.

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