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Top 25 Bruce Lee Quotes

Today is November 27th which means it’s the birthday of The Dragon. Bruce Lee would have celebrated his 77th birthday today. In order to celebrate the (way too short) life of the master of martial arts and one of the most inspirational personas to ever grace earth with his presence I decided to go a little bit off topic and dedicate this post to Bruce Lee.

As it is for so many others Bruce Lee also got me into admiring Martial Arts. Honestly I think my first ever Martial Arts movie I saw was probably a Jackie Chan one. As a kid you remember the funny stuff more than the real impressive things. As I grew older however I learned to appreciate the teachings of Bruce Lee. It’s not that I attended class with him or anything but it is simply that in every interview, tv appearance or show Bruce Lee was teaching something.

What else was impressive were obviously his insane abilities. Did you know that lots of his fight scenes in movies had to be slowed down in order to make the moves visible for the audience? Otherwise you would have only seen a blurry mess on TV. Wow!

Honestly there are jus too many awesome things related to Bruce Lee to mention all. Starting with the one inch punch, his insane table tennis performance or the fact that he has been a cha cha cha champion (no kidding!). This man simply rocked and it’s a tragedy that he never lived to see the impact he had on this world.

So in order to commemorate Bruce Lee, the master of the black & yellow jump suit, I compiled my 25 favorite quotes that keep inspiring me to this day.

Top 25 Bruce Lee Quotes

Expectations

“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”

Life & Strength

“Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one”

Happiness & Satisfaction

“Be happy, but never satisfied.”

Adaption & Rejection

“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”

Mistakes & Forgiveness

“Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.”

Wisdom & Foolishness

“A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer.”

Limitations

“If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.”

Fear & Practice

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who had practiced one kick 10,000 times.”

Thinking & Doing

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.”

Failure

“Don’t fear failure. — Not failure, but low aim, is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.”

Circumstances & Opportunities

“To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities.”

Knowledge & Applications

“Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.”

Immortality

“The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.”

Doubt & Believe

“The doubters said,

“Man can not fly,”

The doers said,

“Maybe, but we’ll try,”

And finally soared

In the morning glow

While non-believers

Watched from below.”

Being Oneself

“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.”

Improvement

“Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.”

Calmness

“A quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough.”

Respect

“Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.”

Martial Arts

“To me, the extraordinary aspect of martial arts lies in its simplicity. The easy way is also the right way, and martial arts is nothing at all special; the closer to the true way of martial arts, the less wastage of expression there is.”

Understanding

“To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person.”

Development

“As you think, so shall you become.”

Success

“The possession of anything begins in the mind.”

Life Over System

“Man, the living creature, the creating individual, is always more important than any established style or system.”

Teaching!

“A good teacher protects his pupils from his own influence. ”

And, of course, the mother of all inspirational quotes:

“Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.

Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”

What are your memories of Bruce Lee? Did he influence you in one way or the other as well? Let me know in the comments and don’t forget: Be water, my friends!

Sascha Funk

Founder / Editor at My-Thai.org
Sascha is the publisher of my-thai.org and switched from an online marketing agency life in Europe to a teaching and education life in Thailand. He also writes about Teaching & Technology.

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  • Ellen Deveaux

    “Be happy, but never satisfied.” That’s what people need to know that there is more happiness waiting for you in the future if you keep on trying.

  • I like that one too. One of the mantras I take to heart.

  • Beer Suwongwan

    “Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” This quote makes me feel more glad to be my self more when I’m confused or upset.

  • Eve Supmee

    “Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.” Is my favorite quote of Bruce Lee. I really like that he has a very positive thinking and personality. It made him became successful person. Thanks for sharing this quote.

  • Benjapol Juntharee

    I watched his film once. The film is “Enter the Dragon”. “Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” Love this one because I was always believe that all of us have something special in ourselves. Do not trying to be anyone else and happy to be yourself. Appreciate life and one day people will see it

  • Elle Thitakorn

    This is such an inspiring blog! I like every quotes there but the most favorite one is “Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.” I will keep this quote in my mind. When I tired from my study life, I will think of it. Thank you for sharing!

  • Trustsaran Jantanop

    “Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one” This is always be my motto although I never pray for easy life but I always getting myself ready for the difficult time in my life because difficulties will makes me stronger person.

  • Ling Kanyanat

    All of the quotes are very inspiring! I personally like “If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” the most. Things can’t just happen if you don’t do the work. Just like doing a project, just thinking about it won’t make it finish hahaha (cries in tears)

  • Lol. Very fitting :D

  • Jenny Philomena

    I needed that :-) I strongly believe that quotes can perfectly describe situations that people are facing at a time. I love the one that said “Be happy, but never satisfied.” Because, every moment of our life is valuable. Just be happy in the moment, but never stop seeking new experiences and self-improvements.
    Thank you!😊

  • Palm Siradanai

    “Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” I think I could use this for everything. Like when I’ve become a student in university, I have to adapt a lot so we could work on together with friends.

  • Vincent Wu

    “As you think, you shall become,” what a great quote. I have never watch Bruce Lee in the film before, yet I have heard about his struggle to become an asian movie star. He get through a lot and proof that hard-working beats everything.