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A collection of quotes and thoughts by Theodore Roosevelt on inspiration, politics, failure, bravery, success, timidity, hope, clever, wisdom and envy.

100 Motivational Quotes By Theodore Roosevelt On Leadership, Success And Politics

Quick Facts

Also Listed In

Famous As
26th U.S. President

Born On
27 October 1858 AD

Died On
06 January 1919 AD

Born In
New York City

Died At Age
60

Theodore Roosevelt was a renowned author, reformer, naturalist, statesman, soldier and the youngest President of the United States. He joined the Columbia Law School but soon dropped out to pursue his interest in politics. He served as the youngest member of the New York State assembly for three years. He was further appointed to the United States Civil Service and eventually became the President of the ‘New York City Police Commissioners Board’. There he made several reforms to wipe out all the corrupt practices from the most popular corrupt board of the country. He went on to form a voluntary army called the ‘Rough Riders’ which successfully fought the ‘Battle of San Juan Heights’ under his leadership and this got him the pseudonym of ‘Colonel’. This helped him become the vice president and eventually the President after the then President McKinley’s death. As the President, he brought in various social as well as political reforms duw to which he came to known as a modern President. His policies were very far-sighted and helped progress the country even after his presidential term. His undying interest in politics compelled him to be politically active until the day of his death. Here is a collection of his famous quotes and sayings which reflect his charismatic personality. Take a look at the most famous quotations and thoughts by Theodore Roosevelt which have been curated from his life, work, speeches, books, writings and life.

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Believe you can and you're halfway there.

- Theodore Roosevelt

When you're at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hold on

- Theodore Roosevelt

The only man who never makes mistakes is the man who never does anything.

- Theodore Roosevelt

People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care

- Theodore Roosevelt

To educate a person in the mind but not in morals is to educate a menace to society.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Knowing what's right doesn't mean much unless you do what's right.

- Theodore Roosevelt

If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn't sit for a month.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.

- Theodore Roosevelt

I am a part of everything that I have read.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Courage is not having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don't have the strength.

- Theodore Roosevelt

I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care

- Theodore Roosevelt

To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first and love of soft living and the get-rich-quick theory of life.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Every immigrant who comes here should be required within five years to learn English or leave the country.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Whenever you are asked if you can do a job, tell 'em, 'Certainly I can!' Then get busy and find out how to do it.

- Theodore Roosevelt

A vote is like a rifle: its usefulness depends upon the character of the user.

- Theodore Roosevelt

A man who has never gone to school may steal a freight car; but if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Never throughout history has a man who lived a life of ease left a name worth remembering.

- Theodore Roosevelt

When you play, play hard; when you work, don't play at all.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No man needs sympathy because he has to work, because he has a burden to carry. Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft!

- Theodore Roosevelt

When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not Guilty'.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The reason fat men are good natured is they can neither fight nor run.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Politeness [is] a sign of dignity, not subservience.

- Theodore Roosevelt

In this country we have no place for hyphenated Americans.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The joy in life is his who has the heart to demand it.

- Theodore Roosevelt

If given the choice between Righteousness and Peace, I choose Righteousness.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It is not often that a man can make opportunities for himself. But he can put himself in such shape that when or if the opportunities come he is ready.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No man is justified in doing evil on the ground of expediency.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Character, in the long run, is the decisive factor in the life of an individual and of nations alike.

- Theodore Roosevelt

There is not a man of us who does not at times need a helping hand to be stretched out to him, and then shame upon him who will not stretch out the helping hand to his brother.

- Theodore Roosevelt

I am only an average man, but by George, I work harder at it than the average man.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Only those are fit to live who do not fear to die; and none are fit to die who have shrunk from the joy of life and the duty of life. Both life and death are parts of the same Great Adventure.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars, but remember to keep your feet on the ground.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Wide differences of opinion in matters of religious, political, and social belief must exist if conscience and intellect alike are not to be stunted, if there is to be room for healthy growth.

- The Man In The Arena: Speeches and Essays by Theodore Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt

Order without liberty and liberty without order are equally destructive.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No man should receive a dollar unless that dollar has been fairly earned.

- Theodore Roosevelt

In life, as in football, the principle to follow is to hit the line hard.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Every reform movement has a lunatic fringe.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The worst of all fears is the fear of living

- Theodore Roosevelt: An Autobiography, Theodore Roosevelt

Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage.

- Theodore Roosevelt

90% of the work in this country is done by people who don't feel good".

- Theodore Roosevelt

For those who fight for it life has a flavor the sheltered will never know

- Theodore Roosevelt

Women should have free access to every field of labor which they care to enter, and when their work is as valuable as that of a man it should be paid as highly.

- Theodore Roosevelt

All the resources we need are in the mind.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The unforgivable crime is soft hitting. Do not hit at all if it can be avoided, but NEVER hit softly.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No man is above the law, and no man is below it.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The nation behaves well if it treats its natural resources as assets which it must turn over to the next generation increased, and not impaired, in value.

- Theodore Roosevelt

There is quite enough sorrow and shame and suffering and baseness in real life, and there is no need for meeting it unnecessarily in fiction.

- Theodore Roosevelt

People ask the difference between a leader and a boss ... The leader works in the open, and the boss in covert. The leader leads, and the boss drives.

- Theodore Roosevelt

I put myself in the way of things happening, and they happened.

- Theodore Roosevelt

A great democracy has got to be progressive or it will soon cease to be great or a democracy.

- New Nationalism Speech by Teddy Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt

I care not what others think of what I do, but I care very much about what I think of what I do! That is character!

- Theodore Roosevelt

Look Toward the stars but keep your feet firmly on the ground.

- The Greatest American President: The Autobiography of Theodore Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt

It tires me to talk to rich men. You expect a man of millions, the head of a great industry, to be a man worthhearing; but as a rule they don't know anything outside their own business.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It is true of the Nation, as of the individual, that the greatest doer must also be a great dreamer.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Aggressive fighting for the right is the noblest sport the world affords.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The lack of power to take joy in outdoor nature is as real a misfortune as the lack of power to take joy in books

- Theodore Roosevelt

The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The government is us; WE are the government, you and I."- Theodore Roosevelt

- Theodore Roosevelt

We should not forget that it will be just as important to our descendants to be prosperous in their time as it is to us to be prosperous in our time.

- Theodore Roosevelt

This country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a good place for all of us to live in.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It behooves every man to remember that the work of the critic is of altogether secondary importance, and that in the end, progress is accomplished by the man who does things.

- Theodore Roosevelt

I have a perfect horror of words that are not backed up by deeds.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Americanism is a question of principle, of idealism, of character. It is not a matter of birthplace, or creed, or line of descent.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Each one must do his part if we wish to show that the nation is worthy of its good fortune.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It may be true that he travels farthest who travels alone, but the goal thus reached is not worth reaching.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Justice consists not in being neutral between right and wrong, but finding out the right and upholding it, wherever found, against the wrong.

- Theodore Roosevelt

A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The longer I live the more I think of the quality of fortitude... men who fall, pick themselves up and stumble on, fall again, and are trying to get back up when they die.

- Theodore Roosevelt

It is better to have it and need it, than to need it and not have it.

- Theodore Roosevelt

For us is the life of action, of strenuous performance of duty; let us live in the harness, striving mightily; let us rather run the risk of wearing out than rusting out.

- Theodore Roosevelt

There is not one among us in whom a devil does not dwell; at some time, on some point, that devil masters each of us... It is not having been in the Dark House, but having left it, that counts.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The reader, the booklover, must meet his own needs without paying too much attention to what his neighbors say those needs should be.

- Theodore Roosevelt

With self discipline most anything is possible.

- Theodore Roosevelt

There can be no life without change, and to be afraid of what is different or unfamiliar is to be afraid of life.

- Theodore Roosevelt

We demand that big business give the people a square deal; in return we must insist that when any one engaged in big business honestly endeavors to do right he shall himself be given a square deal.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Nine tenths of wisdom consists in being wise in time.

- Theodore Roosevelt

If there is not the war, you don't get the great general; if there is not a great occasion, you don't get a great statesman; if Lincoln had lived in a time of peace, no one would have known his name.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Comparison is the thief of joy.

- Theodore Roosevelt

We are the heirs of the ages

- Theodore Roosevelt

We want men who will fix their eyes on the stars, but who will not forget that their feet must walk on the ground.

- Theodore Roosevelt

Great corporations exist only because they are created and safeguarded by our institutions; and it is therefore our right and duty to see that they work in harmony with these institutions.

- Theodore Roosevelt

No ability, no strength and force, no power of intellect or power of wealth, shall avail us, if we have not the root of right living in us.

- Theodore Roosevelt

We must hold to a rigid accountability those public servants who show unfaithfulness to the interests of the nation or inability to rise to the high level of the new demands upon our strength and our resources.

- Strenuous Life, Theodore Roosevelt

I would rather go out of politics having the feeling that I had done what was right than stay in with the approval of all men, knowing in my heart that I have acted as I ought not to.

- Theodore Roosevelt

To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.

- Theodore Roosevelt

The conservation of natural resources is the fundamental problem. Unless we solve that problem it will avail us little to solve all others

- Theodore Roosevelt

So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat

- Theodore Roosevelt

Nothing worth having was ever achieved without effort

- Theodore Roosevelt

It is no use to preach to children if you do not act decently yourself.

- Theodore Roosevelt

There has never yet been a person in our history who led a life of ease whose name is worth remembering.

- Theodore Roosevelt: An Autobiography, Theodore Roosevelt