83 Most Popular Motivational Quotes by Abdul Kalam

A former president of India, a scientist, a great leader, and an inspiration to the youth, Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen or simply Abdul Kalam is commonly known as the “Missile man of India.” His contribution to science goes beyond all the recognition bestowed upon him by the society.

Abdul Kalam was an inspirational teacher and President. His teachings are working as a weapon to fight against failure. His lifestyle and his dedication to his nation will always be remembered.

Inspirational Quotes by Abdul Kalam

So, to relive his wonderful life, here are some of his quotes that will bud motivation in your life.

1. “Difficulties in your life do not come to destroy you, but to help you realize your hidden potential and power, let difficulties know that you too are difficult.”

2. “All birds find shelter during a rain. But Eagles avoid rain by flying above the clouds. Problems are common, but attitude makes the difference.”

3. “This is my belief: that through difficulties and problems God gives us the opportunity to grow. So when your hopes and dreams and goals are dashed, search among the wreckage, you may find a golden opportunity hidden in the ruins.”

4. “Thinking is the capital, Enterprise is the way, and Hard Work is the solution.”

5. “Failure will never overtake me if my definition to succeed is strong enough.”

6. “Suffering is the essence of success!”

7. “You cannot change your future, but you can change your habits, and surely your habits will change your future.”

8. “Climbing to the top demands strength, whether it is to the top of Mount Everest or to the top of your career.”

9. “Confidence and hard work is the best medicine to kill the disease called failure. It will make you a successful person.”

10. “We should not give up and we should not allow the problems defeat us.”

11. “Don’t read success stories, you will only get a message. Read failure stories, you will get some ideas to get success.”

12. “Black color is sentimentally bad but, every blackboard makes the student’s life bright.”

13. “Educationists should build the capacities of the spirit of inquiry, creativity, entrepreneurial and moral leadership among students and become their role model.”

14. “Look at the sky. We are not alone. The whole universe is friendly to us and conspires only to give the best to those who dream and work.”

15. “One of the very important characteristics of a student is to question. Let the students ask questions.”

16. “Let us sacrifice our today so that our children can have a better tomorrow.”

17. “Love your job but don’t love your company, because you may not know when your company stops loving you.”

18. “The best brains of the nation may be found on the last benches of the classroom.”

19. “It is very easy to defeat someone, but it is very hard to win someone.”

20. “No religion has mandated killing others as a requirement for its sustenance or promotion.”

21. “My view is that at a younger age your optimism is more and you have more imagination. You have less bias.”

22. “If a country is to be corruption free and become a nation of beautiful minds, I strongly feel there are three key societal members who can make a difference. They are the father, the mother and the teacher.”

23. “Life is a difficult game. You can win it only by retaining your birthright to be a person.”

24. “Dream is not that which you see while sleeping, it is something that does not let you sleep.”

25. “IF you want to SHINE like the SUN, first burn like the SUN.”

26. “Learning gives creativity, Creativity Leads to Thinking, Thinking Provides Knowledge, and Knowledge makes you great.”

27. “Success is when your Signature Changes to Autograph.”

28. “Your best teacher is your last mistake.”

29. “Without your Involvement, you can’t SUCCEED. With your Involvement, you can’t FAIL.”

30. “If you FAIL, never give up because F.A.I.L. means “First Attempt at Learning.” END is not the end; in fact, E.N.D. means “Effort Never Dies.” If you get NO as an answer, remember N.O. means “Next Opportunity.”

31. “A Fool can become a Genius when he understands he is a Fool but a Genius can become a Fool when he understands he is a Genius.”

32. “No matter what is the environment around you, it is always possible to maintain your brand of integrity.”

33. “IF you salute your work, you do not have to salute anybody. If you pollute your work, you have to salute everybody.”

34. “What is the secret of success? Right decisions. How do you make right decisions? Experience. How do you gain experience? Wrong decisions.”

35. “My message, especially to young people, is to have the courage to think differently, the courage to invent, to travel the unexplored path, courage to discover the impossible and to conquer the problems and succeed. These are great qualities that they must work towards. This is my message to the young people.”

36. “One best book is equal to hundred good friends but one good friend is equal to a library.”

37. “Don’t take rest after your first victory because if you fail in second, more lips are waiting to say that your first victory was just luck.”

38. “If you are born with fame, it is an accident. If you die with fame, it is an achievement.”

39. “I’m not a handsome guy, but I can give my hand to someone who needs help. Beauty is in the heart, not in the face.”

40. “To succeed in your mission, you must have single-minded devotion to your goal.”

41. “Problems are common, but attitude makes the difference!”

42. “Never stop fighting until you arrive at your destined place – that is, the unique you. Have an aim in life, continuously acquire knowledge, work hard, and have the perseverance to realize the great life.”

43. “Desire, when it stems from the heart and spirit, when it is pure and intense, possesses awesome electromagnetic energy. This energy is released into the ether each night, as the mind falls into the sleep state. Each morning it returns to the conscious state reinforced with the cosmic currents. That which has been imaged will surely and certainly be manifested. You can rely, young man, upon this ageless promise as surely as you can rely upon the eternally unbroken promise of sunrise… and of spring.”

44. “You see, God helps only people who work hard. That principle is very clear.”

45. “Let me define a leader. He must have vision and passion and not be afraid of any problem. Instead, he should know how to defeat it. Most importantly, he must work with integrity.”

46. “You have to dream before your dreams can come true.”

47. “Thinking should become your capital asset, no matter the ups and downs you come across in your life.”

48. “Be active! Take on responsibility! Work for the things you believe in. If you do not, you are surrendering your fate to others.”

49. “In this world, fear has no place. Only strength respects strength.”

50. “Excellence is a continuous process and not an accident.”

51. “Man needs his difficulties because they are necessary to enjoy success.”

52. “In a democracy, the well-being, individuality, and happiness of every citizen are important for the overall prosperity, peace, and happiness of the nation.”

53. “Thinking is progress. Non-thinking is stagnation of the individual, organization and the country. Thinking leads to action. Knowledge without action is useless and irrelevant. Knowledge of action converts adversity into prosperity.”

54. “Be more dedicated to making solid achievements than in running after swift but synthetic happiness.”

55. “A teacher should have a creative mind.”

56. “Once your mind stretches to a new level it never goes back to its original dimension.”

57. “If we are not free, no one will respect us.”

58. “Each individual creature on this beautiful planet is created by God to fulfill a particular role. Whatever I have achieved in life is through His help and an expression of His will. He showered His grace on me through some outstanding teachers and colleagues and when I pay my tributes to these fine persons, I am merely praising His glory. We are all born with a divine fire in us.”

59. “Total commitment is the common denominator among all successful men and women.”

60. “There are forces in life working for you and against you. One must distinguish the beneficial forces from the malevolent ones and choose correctly between them.”

61. “Poetry comes from the highest happiness or the deepest sorrow.”

62. “We must think and act like a nation of a billion people and not like that of a million people. Dream, dream, dream!”

63. “Adversity always presents opportunities for introspection.”

64. “For me, there are two types of people: the young and the experienced.”

65. “While children are struggling to be unique, the world around them is trying all means to make them look like everybody else.”

66. “For great men, religion is a way of making friends; small people make religion a fighting tool.”

67. “Those who cannot work with their hearts achieve but a hollow, half-hearted success that breeds bitterness all around.”

68. “As a child of God, I am greater than anything that can happen to me.”

69. “It means, people who are in high and responsible positions, if they go against righteousness, righteousness itself will get transformed into a destroyer.”

70. “When the mother is happy, the family is happy. When the family is happy, the nation is happy.”

71. “When we tackle obstacles, we find hidden reserves of courage and resilience we did not know we had. And it is only when we are faced with failure do we realize that these resources were always there within us. We only need to find them and move on with our lives.”

72. “Great dreams of great dreamers are always transcended.”

73. “When learning is purposeful, creativity blossoms. When creativity blossoms, thinking emanates. When thinking emanates, knowledge is fully lit. When knowledge is lit, economy flourishes.”

74. “The bird is powered by its own life and by its motivation.”

75. “Do we not realize that self-respect comes with self-reliance?”

76. “When you speak, speak the truth; perform when you promise; discharge your trust… withhold your hands from striking, and from taking that which is unlawful and bad.”

77. “Science is global. Einstein’s equation, E=mc2, has to reach everywhere. Science is a beautiful gift to humanity, we should not distort it. Science does not differentiate between multiple races.”

78. “I was willing to accept what I couldn’t change.”

79. “Let not thy winged days be spent in vain. When once gone no gold can buy them back again.”

80. “The only day in your life… your mother smiled when you cried.”

81. “No sanction can stand against ignited minds.”

82. “For me, there is no such thing as a negative experience.”

83. “Everyone’s life is a page in the human history irrespective of the position he or she holds or the work he or she performs.”


Abdul Kalam’s work in the field of science and technology and his love for students is more than appreciable. These quotes and teachings I’ve listed above by People’s President Dr. Kalam inspire us the most. His teaching is a weapon to fight against self-limitation and failure.

He left young India some amazing quotes and thoughts. Late Abdul Kalam continues to inspire us even after he is gone. He never really is gone because his words will be in our heart and mind forever.

image credit: anangpuria.com