Abraham Lincoln Quotations: Words To Live By

What You Say To Yourself If You Want To Be Like Lincoln
by Gene Griessman, Ph.D.
author of “The Words Lincoln Lived By,”
“Lincoln on Communication,” and “Lincoln And Obama”

One thing’s for sure.  What you say to yourself–your self-talk–and how you see yourself determines who you are, and what you will become.

In order to help you think right, I’ve gone through the massive Lincoln literature to find a handful of pithy, authentic, powerful statements that Lincoln made–words that you can live by.

You can use these quotes as affirmations.  (I’ve abbreviated them just a bit without changing their meaning in order to make you task of creating affirmations easier.)

It’s comparatively easy to create your own affirmations.   The first Lincoln quote–“Your own resolution to succeed…” becomes the  affirmation: “I am successful.”   “Resolve to be honest,” becomes “I am honest,”  “The leading rule…is diligence” becomes “I am diligent,” “I have an irrepressible desire…” becomes “The world will be better because I have lived in it,”and so on.

Is it worth thinking this way? The answer is yes, and the proof is Lincoln himself.  If a poor, awkward, semi-literate boy growing up in the backwoods could become a legendary success, so can you.

Life-changing Quotations From Abraham Lincoln

  • Your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other one thing.
  • Never say “If I can.” Always say “I will.”
  • The leading rule…for the man of every profession is diligence. Leave nothing for to-morrow, which can be done today.
  • Avoid quarrels. No man who has resolved to make the most of himself can spare time for personal contention.
  • Be so clear that no honest man can misunderstand you, and no dishonest man can misinterpret you.
  • Get the books and read them carefully. Work, work, work is the main thing.
  • Half-finished work is generally labor lost.
  • When one is embarrassed, usually the best way to get through with it is to quit talking about it, or thinking about it, and go at something else.
  • I’ll study and get ready, and then the chance will come.
  • I have an irrepressible desire to live till I can be assured that the world is a little better for my having lived in it.

The Words Lincoln Lived By

“Not a single Lincoln quotation that’s spurious in the entire book.”

“This is a book to cherish and share.”—Bill Marriott, CEO, Marriott International, Inc.

“Not only does Griessman give us Lincoln quotes, but he also weaves each one into a little jewel of an essay on that particular subject.” Wayne C. Temple, renowned Lincoln scholar, Illinois State Archives

A stirring, inspirational treasury of quotations from our greatest and most admired president.

You will also enjoy Lincoln Speaks To Leaders by Gene Griessman and Pat Williams.

Don’t leave yet. You’ve found a goldmine. Check out additional power phrases and unusual quotations.


Gene Griessman is an internationally known keynote speaker, actor, and communication strategist. His book “TheWords Lincoln Lived By” is in its 23rd printing and “Time Tactics of Very Successful People” is in its 43rd printing. His training video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions and annual meetings all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, call 404-435-2225. Learn more at Atlanta Speakers Bureau or at his website. His latest book “Lincoln and Obama” has just been released by Audible.
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