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The process of discovering who you are is a huge part of life. Discovering and knowing who we are establishes our sense of self-worth, confidence, and belief. These quotes about finding yourself are a great place to start.
For some, the process of self-discovery is completely natural. Spending time alone helps them to focus on who they are, what their goals are, and how they want to live.
Others live in the moment and don’t explore their inner self until something or someone else forces them to.
“Finding yourself” looks different for everyone.
For some, it might mean spending a few months or a year of traveling the world. For others, the routine and friendships of college help them to establish who they are and what they want to do. For many, the process of finding out who they are takes much longer, and includes losses, heartbreaks, and changes in direction along the way.
Though your journey to finding yourself may be a personal one, we all deserve some inspiration along the way. So here are the very best quotes about finding yourself, knowing yourself, and self-discovery to help you on your way!
Quotes About Finding Yourself
If a man happens to find himself, he has a mansion which he can inhabit with dignity all the days of his life.James A. Michener
To find yourself, think for yourself.Socrates
In the end you don’t so much find yourself as you find someone who knows who you are.Robert Brault
Don’t spend all of your time trying to FIND yourself. Spend your time CREATING yourself into a person that you’ll be proud of.Sonya Parker
You’ve got to find yourself first. Everything else’ll follow.Charles de Lint
Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread.Richard Wright
First find the man in yourself if you will inspire manliness in others.Amos Bronson Alcott
Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom.Lao Tzu
If you’re being ignored, that’s a good time to concentrate on finding yourself and creating your own mystery.Lykke Li
Should we say the self, once perceived, becomes the soul?Theodore Roethke
It is the individual who knows how little they know about themselves who stands the most reasonable chance of finding out something about themselves before they die.S. I. Hayakawa
Be who you are, and find yourself so you can be your own person and enjoy life with no regret.Bonnie Zackson Koury
Your real self may be hiding somewhere, look for it within, when you find yourself, you can freely be what you want to be.Michael Bassey Johnson
Why should we honor those that die upon the field of battle? A man may show as reckless a courage in entering into the abyss of himself.William Butler Yeats
The greatest explorer on this earth never takes voyages as long as those of the man who descends to the depth of his heart.Julien Green
There is no satisfaction that can compare with looking back across the years and finding you’ve grown in self-control, judgment, generosity, and unselfishness.Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves.Henry David Thoreau
You cannot dream yourself into a character; you must hammer and forge yourself one.James A. Froude
All men should strive to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why.James Thurber
You’ve got to know yourself so you can at last be yourself.D.H. Lawrence
One’s own self is well hidden from one’s own self; of all mines of treasure, one’s own is the last to be dug up.Friedrich Nietzsche
This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.William Shakespeare, Hamlet
What you fear is inside yourself… The power to do great or terrible things.Liam Neeson, Batman Begins
It is not only the most difficult thing to know oneself, but the most inconvenient one, too.H.W. Shaw
People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates.Thomas Szasz
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.Henry David Thoreau
I wasn’t searching for something or someone….I was searching for me.Carrie Bradshaw, Sex and The City
If you don’t get lost, there’s a chance you may never be found.Unknown
One must know oneself. If this does not serve to discover truth, it at least serves as a rule of life and there is nothing better.Blise Pascal
There are three things extremely hard: steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.Benjamin Franklin
All this time I was finding myself, And I didn’t know I was lost.Avicci, Wake Me Up
Self-Discovery and Knowing Yourself
Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.Aristotle
Step into the fire of self-discovery. This fire will not burn you, it will only burn what you are not.Mooji
You really have to look inside yourself and find your own inner strength, and say, ‘I’m proud of what I am and who I am, and I’m just going to be myself.Mariah Carey
Man can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as… from a lack of bread.Richard Wright, Native Son
You will recognize your own path when you come upon it, because you will suddenly have all the energy and imagination you will ever need.Jerry Gilles
Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.Carl Jung
There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self.Aldous Huxley
I can teach anybody how to get what they want out of life. The problem is that I can’t find anybody who can tell me what they want.Mark Twain
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes but in having new eyes.Marcel Proust
Your work is to discover your work and then with all your heart give yourself to it.Buddha
You have no need to travel anywhere. Journey within yourself, enter a mine of rubies and bathe in the splendor of your own light.Rumi
At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.Lao Tzu
People who fit don’t seek. The seekers are those that don’t fit.Shannon L. Adler
We only become what we are by the radical and deep-seated refusal of that which others have made of us.Jean-Paul Sartre
I know well what I am fleeing from but not what I am in search of.Michel de Montaigne
I think somehow we learn who we really are and then we live with that decision.Eleanor Roosevelt
The man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life.Mohammad Ali
What you discover on your own is always more exciting than what someone else discovers for you – it’s like the marriage between romantic love and an arranged marriage.Terrence Rafferty
Painting is self-discovery. Every good artist paints what he is.Jackson Pollock
Man never knows what he wants; he aspires to penetrate mysteries and as soon as he has, he wants to reestablish them. Ignorance irritates him and knowledge cloys.Henri Frederic Amiel
There are… things which a man is afraid to tell even to himself, and every decent man has a number of such things stored away in his mind.Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground, 1864
Becoming conscious is of course a sacrilege against nature; it is as though you had robbed the unconscious of something.Carl Jung
Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.St. Augustine
One does not ‘find oneself’ by pursuing one’s self, but on the contrary by pursuing something else and learning through discipline or routine… who one is and wants to be.May Sarton
I don’t know where I am going, but I am on my way.Voltaire
For most men life is a search for the proper manila envelope in which to get themselves filed.Clifton Fadiman
If you resist reading what you disagree with, how will you ever acquire deeper insights into what you believe? The things most worth reading are precisely those that challenge our convictions.Anonymous
We hope you’ve enjoyed these quotes about finding yourself! If you’ve been inspired by another quote, please share it with us in the comments!
Update: Originally published June 17, 2012 and updated on April 13, 2020.