Change is hard, guys. A few years back, I was wrestling with whether or not to accept an exciting offer and start a new, challenging role that I’d dreamed about landing for years. I should have been thrilled, but the idea of leaving my comfy job and awesome co-workers for something new and different was kind of terrifying. After spending way too much time agonizing over my decision, I ended up taking the new job, hating it, and quitting without a backup plan. Long story short, that choice led to an entirely new career. So yeah, I’m pretty familiar with change – and it can be tough.
I’ll be the first person to tell you that in addition to being an inevitable (and constant) part of life, change can also be incredibly exciting. Endings can be scary, but they open the door to new beginnings and fresh starts, which offer us a great opportunity to grow, test, and challenge ourselves, too. And ultimately, they usually lead to somewhere pretty great — sometimes even to our dreams.
However, none of that stuff matters when you’re in the throes of a massive, life-changing upheaval. So, for today, and until you get to the other side of whatever transition you’re currently navigating, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite inspiring quotes about change and new beginnings. These new beginning quotes and sayings all inspired me at some point along my journey, and I hope they’ll inspire you, too!
When you’re teetering on the edge of a new beginning.
1. “Change can be scary, but you know what’s scarier? Allowing fear to stop you from growing, evolving, and progressing.” — Mandy Hale
2. “One day you will wake up and there won’t be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted. Do it now.” — Paulo Coelho
3. “Your life does not get better by chance. It gets better by change.” — Jim Rohn
4. “It’s a terrible thing, I think, in life to wait until you’re ready. I have this feeling now that actually no one is ever ready to do anything. There is almost no such thing as ready. There is only now.” — Hugh Laurie
5. “Don’t live the same year 75 times and call it a life.” — Robin Sharma
6. “The three Cs in life: choice, chance, change. You must make the choice to take the chance if you want anything in life to change.” — Unknown
7. “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
8. “Never allow waiting to become a habit. Live your dreams and take risks. Life is happening now.” — Paulo Coelho
9. “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go. They merely determine where you start." — Nido Qubein
10. “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” — Anonymous, but often attributed to C.S. Lewis
11. “Every day is a chance to change your life.” — Unknown
When you’re struggling with change.
12. “Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well.” — Jack Kornfield
13. “When we make a change, it’s so easy to interpret our unsettledness as unhappiness, and our unhappiness as a result of having made the wrong decision. Our mental health and emotional states fluctuate madly when we make big changes in our lives, and some days we could tight-rope across Manhattan, and other days we are too weary to clean our teeth. This is normal. This is natural. This is change.” — Jeanette Winterson
14. “Maybe you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” — Madeline L’Engle
15. “Comfort is the enemy of achievement.” — Farrah Gray
16. “It’s okay to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really brave." — Unknown
17. “Don’t let the concept of change scare you as much as the prospect of remaining unhappy.” — Timber Hawkeye
18. “Don’t give up on the person you’re becoming.” — Unknown
19. “If you want to change, you have to be willing to be uncomfortable.” — Unknown
20. “If something is over and done, don’t hold onto it. Break free, move forward and experience a new beginning.” — Joel Osteen
21. “Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same.” — The Fray
22. “New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.” — Lao Tzu
23. “Don’t be afraid of new beginnings. Don’t shy away from new people, new energy, new surroundings. Embrace new chances at happiness.” — Billy Chapata
24. “Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.” — J.K. Rowling
25. “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you." — Fred DeVito
When you’re embracing new beginnings.
26. “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” — Alan Watts
27. “And suddenly you just know it’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.” — Meister Eckhart
28. “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” — Dan Millman
29. “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people just exist.” — Oscar Wilde
30. “You don’t have to do this. You get to do this.” — Tom Kubis
31. “Actually, I can.” — Unknown
32. “You’re off to great places. Today is your day. Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way.” — Dr. Seuess
33. “There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” —C.S. Lewis
34. “Your time as a caterpillar has expired. Your wings are ready.” — Unknown
35. “Change and growth take place when a person has risked himself and dares to become involved in experimenting with his own life.” — Herbert Otto
36. “Today I close the door to the past, open the door to the future, take a deep breath, step on through and start a new chapter in my life.” — Unkown
37. “There comes a day when you realize turning the page is the best feeling in the world, because you realize there’s so much more to the book than the page you were stuck on.” — Zayn Malik
“I feel a new beginning coming towards me and I’m running to it with open arms." — Unkown
When you’re reflecting on change.
38. “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing [at all].” — Helen Keller
39. “I’m stronger because I had to be, I’m smarter because of my mistakes, happier because of the sadness I’ve known, and now wiser because I learned.” — Unkown
40. “Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.” — Dr. Seuss
41. “You’re not a mess. You’re brave for trying.” — Unkown
42. “For what it’s worth: it’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. And if you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start over.” — F. Scott Fitzgerald
43. “I’ll look back on this and smile because it was life and I decided to live it.” — Unkown
44. “Life is about change, sometimes it’s painful, sometimes it’s beautiful, but most of the time it’s both.” — Kristin Kreuk
45. “I am learning to love the sound of my feet walking away from things not meant for me.” — A.G.
46. “If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.” — Gail Sheehy
47. “This was when I learned that you have to give up your life as you know it to get a new one: that sometimes you need to let go of everything you’re clinging to and start over, whether because you’ve outgrown it or because it’s not working anymore, or because it was wrong for you in the first place.” — Kelly Cutrone
48. “I’d rather have a life of ‘oh wells’ than a life of ‘what ifs.’ “ — Unknown
49. “One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful.” — Sigmund Freud
50. “Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” ― Rumi
More resources to help you cope with change.
If you're looking for more resources to help you cope with change, check out these posts from Fairygodboss on more quotes about change or advice on change.
- If you're going through any type of change and are apprehensive about it, check out Quotes About Change That Will Change Your Attitude.
- If you're thinking about changing careers but aren't sure if it's the right time or how to go about it if it is, check out Time For A Career Change? Here's How To Know — And How To Get Started.
- If you're looking to make positive changes in your company, check out Making Change Happen: Why Innovative Leadership Is Essential to Your Company's Success.
Jaclyn Westlake is a career advice columnist, creator of the Job Hopper's Job Search Strategy Guide and founder of The Job Hop. With more than ten years of experience in the recruiting and human resources space, she is passionate about empowering job seekers to achieve their career goals. She's also particularly fond of coffee, every dog in the world, and the city of San Francisco.