My All-Time Favorite Jim Rohn Quotes


It was 1994 when I told Jim I wanted to do a Treasury of Quotes. He reluctantly agreed (his humbleness kept him from thinking it was needed). I went through every recording we had, all my journal notes of our conversations and the transcripts of his books at the time. I gathered almost a thousand quotes on over 100 topics and from there edited them down to 365 quotes on 60 topics. That seemed tough enough (leaving so many out). Now to just list 30… impossible, but here is my best attempt. These are all classics!

The major value in life is not what you get. The major value in life is what you become. That is why I wish to pay fair price for every value. If I have to pay for it or earn it, that makes something of me. If I get it for free, that makes nothing of me.

Human beings have the remarkable ability to turn nothing into something. They can turn weeds into gardens and pennies into fortunes.

Showing a profit means touching something and leaving it better than you found it.

Profits are better than wages. Wages make you a living; profits make you a fortune.

I used to say, “I sure hope things will change.” Then I learned that the only way things are going to change for me is when I change.

We generally change ourselves for one of two reasons: inspiration or desperation.

It takes time to build a corporate work of art. It takes time to build a life. And it takes time to develop and grow. So give yourself, your enterprise, and your family the time they deserve and the time they require.

The twin killers of success are impatience and greed.

How long should you try? Until.

Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.

The greatest gift you can give to somebody is your own personal development. I used to say, “If you will take care of me, I will take care of you.” Now I say, “I will take care of me for you if you will take care of you for me”

You cannot succeed by yourself. It’s hard to find a rich hermit.

Success is not to be pursued; it is to be attracted by the person you become.

Learn how to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.

I remember saying to my mentor, “If I had more money, I would have a better plan.” He quickly responded, “I would suggest that if you had a better plan, you would have more money.” You see, it’s not the amount that counts; it’s the plan that counts.

You must get good at one of two things: sowing in the spring or begging in the fall.

There are three things to leave behind: your photographs, your library and your personal journals. These things are certainly going to be more valuable to future generations than your furniture!

For effective communication, use brevity. Jesus said, “Follow me.” Now that’s brief! He could be brief because of all that he was that he didn’t have to say.

The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude; be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not a bully; be thoughtful, but not lazy; be humble, but not timid; be proud, but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.

We must learn to help those who deserve it, not just those who need it. Life responds to deserve not need.

Resolve says, “I will.” The man says, “I will climb this mountain. They told me it is too high, too far, too steep, too rocky and too difficult. But it’s my mountain. I will climb it. You will soon see me waving from the top or dead on the side from trying.”

Income seldom exceeds personal development.

Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day. It is the accumulative weight of our disciplines and our judgments that leads us to either fortune or failure.

Economic disaster begins with a philosophy of doing less and wanting more.

Let others lead small lives, but not you. Let others argue over small things, but not you. Let others cry over small hurts, but not you. Let others leave their future in someone else’s hands, but not you.

Don’t wish it was easier; wish you were better. Don’t wish for less problems; wish for more skills. Don’t wish for less challenges; wish for more wisdom.

You can cut down a tree with a hammer, but it takes about 30 days. If you trade the hammer for an ax, you can cut it down in about 30 minutes. The difference between 30 days and 30 minutes is skills.

We all have two choices: We can make a living or we can design a life.

Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.

You must constantly ask yourself these questions: Who am I around? What are they doing to me? What have they got me reading? What have they got me saying? Where do they have me going? What do they have me thinking? And most important, what do they have me becoming? Then ask yourself the big question: Is that okay?

The greatest form of maturity is at harvest time. This is when we must learn how to reap without complaint if the amounts are small and how to reap without apology if the amounts are big.

One of the great liberal documents of the world is the Declaration of Independence. One of the most conservative documents of the world is the Constitution of the United States. We need both documents to build a country. One to get it started – liberal. And the other to help maintain the structure over the years – conservative.

If you wish to find, you must search. Rarely does a good idea interrupt you.

One customer, well taken care of, could be more valuable than $10,000 worth of advertising.

Hope you enjoyed this sampling of Jim Rohn wisdom!


I recently shared the most amazing day I spent with Jim Rohn. Go here to read!

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