Top 50 Inspirational Quotes by Paulo Coelho

Paulo Coelho is the author of one of the best selling books in history, The Alchemist, which has sold more than 65 millions copies world wide and has been translated into 71 languages, earning it a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the most translated book.

The book itself is a fable about following your dreams. Since the book was originally written in Portuguese, you may find slightly different translations elsewhere compared to the quotes on this page. Whether you like the story in the book or not, I think it contains a lot of good quotes about life. There are some good quotes about love as well but the ones I chose are mainly ones that I found to be inspiring.

These inspirational quotes aren’t in any particular order. In fact, #50 is probably in my top 5 favorite Paulo Coelho quotes. Not all of these quotes are from The Alchemist by the way. Feel free to add any that aren’t on this list down in the comments below. Thanks and enjoy!

1. “It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.”

2. “When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.”

3. “Everything tells me that I am about to make a wrong decision, but making mistakes is just part of life. What does the world want of me? Does it want me to take no risks, to go back to where I came from because I didn’t have the courage to say “yes” to life?”

4. “You are what you believe yourself to be.”

5. “Life is too short, or too long, for me to allow myself the luxury of living it so badly.”

6. “What’s the world’s greatest lie? It’s this: that at a certain point in our lives, we lose control of what’s happening to us, and our lives become controlled by fate.”

7. “A child can teach an adult three things: to be happy for no reason, to always be busy with something, and to know how to demand with all his might that which he desires.”

8. “When you find your path, you must not be afraid. You need to have sufficient courage to make mistakes. Disappointment, defeat, and despair are the tools God uses to show us the way.”

9. “It’s the simple things in life that are the most extraordinary, only wise men are able to understand them.”

10. “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”

11. “People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.”

12. “We can never judge the lives of others, because each person knows only their own pain and renunciation. It’s one thing to feel that you are on the right path, but it’s another to think that yours is the only path.”

13. Haters are confused admirers who can’t understand why everybody else likes you

14. “I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we’re living now.”

15. “There are moments when troubles enter our lives and we can do nothing to avoid them. But they are there for a reason. Only when we have overcome them will we understand why they were there.”

16. “Go for the impossible. I always tried to find my own limits. So far I did not find them, so my universe is in constant expansion.”

17. “Timidity puts obstacles in your path, boldness eliminates them.”

18. “‘Someday’, ‘maybe’ and ‘if’ are very dangerous words that must be avoided.”

19. “I can choose either to be a victim of the world or an adventurer in search of treasure. It’s all a question of how I view my life.”

20. “Whenever you want to achieve something, keep your eyes open, concentrate and make sure you know exactly what it is you want. No one can hit their target with their eyes closed.”

21. “Don’t listen to the malicious comments of those friends who, never taking any risks themselves, can only see other people’s failures.”

22. “All you have to do is to pay attention; lessons always arrive when you are ready, and if you can read the signs, you will learn everything you need to know in order to take the next step.”

23. “Don’t allow your mind to tell your heart what to do. The mind gives up easily.”

24. “We must never stop dreaming. Dreams provide nourishment for the soul, just as a meal does for the body.”

25. “There is only one way to learn. It’s through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey.”

26. “When a person really desires something, all the universe conspires to help that person to realize his dream.

27. “You can become blind by seeing each day as a similar one. Each day is a different one, each day brings a miracle of its own.”

28. “The world we live in will be either better or worse depending on whether we become better or worse.”

29. “Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.”

30. “Happiness is something that multiplies when it is divided.”

31. “You have to take risks. We will only understand the miracle of life fully when we allow the unexpected to happen.”

32. “When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.”

33. “But there is suffering in life, and there are defeats. No one can avoid them. But it’s better to lose some of the battles in the struggles for your dreams than to be defeated without ever knowing what you’re fighting for.”

34. “All battles in life serve to teach us something, even the battles we lose.”

35. “Stop thinking all the time that you’re in the way, that you’re bothering the person next to you. If people don’t like it, they can complain. And if they don’t have courage to complain, that’s their problem.”

36. “Your drown not by falling into a river but by staying submerged in it.”

37. “Everyone, when they are young, knows what their destiny is. At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible. They are not afraid to dream, and to yearn for everything they would like to see happen to them in their lives.”

38. “It was my fear of failure that first kept me from attempting the master work. Now, I’m beginning what I could have started ten years ago. But I’m happy at least that I didn’t wait twenty years.”

39. “The path to wisdom is not being afraid to make mistakes.”

40. “Those who never take risks can only see other people’s failures.”

41. “Pitiful is the person who is afraid of taking risks. Perhaps this person will never be disappointed or disillusioned; perhaps she won’t suffer the way people do when they have a dream to follow. But when the person looks back-she will hear her heart.”

42. “I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we’re living now.”

43. “Making mistakes is a way of taking action.”

44. “The end of one stage is only the beginning of another. Any dangers overcome are the necessary preparation to do better in the next stage.”

45. “The most important experiences we can have are those that take us to the very limit. That is the only way we learn, because it requires all our courage.”

46. “The world lies in the hands of those who have the courage to dream and who take the risk of living out their dreams – each according to his or her own talent.”

47. “Tragedies do happen. We can discover the reason, blame others, imagine how different our lives would be had they not occurred. But none of that is important: they did occur, and so be it. From there onward we must put aside the fear that they awoke in us and begin to rebuild.”

48. “A warrior accepts defeat. He does not treat it as a matter of indifference, nor does he attempt to transform it into a victory. The pain of defeat is bitter to him; he suffers at indifference and becomes desperate with loneliness. After all this has passed, he licks his wounds and begins everything anew. A warrior knows that war is made of many battles: he goes on.”

49. “Life can seem short or life can seem long, depending on how you live it.”

50. “Seize every opportunity that life offers you because, when opportunities go, they take a long time to come back.”

Most of these quotes are from, The Alchemist (Available on Amazon). It also happens to be one of Will Smith‘s favorite books.

Main Quotes Page |


  1. Yusuf Abdu Goje January 12, 2013
  2. Mary BethKing January 13, 2013
  3. Mary BethKing January 13, 2013

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