Jay Z is an American rapper, record producer, and entrepreneur. He is one of the most financially successful hip hop artists and entrepreneurs in America. In 2015, Forbes estimated Jay Z’s net worth at nearly $550 million.
Here are 66 Inspirational Jay-Z quotes:
1. “I’m a mirror. If you’re cool with me, I’m cool with you, and the exchange starts. What you see is what you reflect. If you don’t like what you see, then you’ve done something. If I’m standoffish, that’s because you are.” – Jay-Z
2. “I’m hungry for knowledge. The whole thing is to learn every day, to get brighter and brighter. That’s what this world is about. You look at someone like Gandhi, and he glowed. Martin Luther King glowed. Muhammad Ali glows. I think that’s from being bright all the time, and trying to be brighter.” – Jay-Z
3. “As kids we didn’t complain about being poor; we talked about how rich we were going to be and made moves to get the lifestyle we aspired to by any means we could. And as soon as we had a little money, we were eager to show it.” – Jay-Z
4. “That’s why this generation is the least racist generation ever. You see it all the time. Go to any club. People are intermingling, hanging out, having fun, enjoying the same music. Hip-hop is not just in the Bronx anymore. It’s worldwide. Everywhere you go, people are listening to hip-hop and partying together. Hip-hop has done that.” – Jay-Z
5. “You make your first album, you make some money, and you feel like you still have to show face, like ‘I still go to the projects.’ I’m like, why? Your job is to inspire people from your neighborhood to get out. You grew up there. What makes you think it’s so cool?” – Jay-Z
6. “I collect art, and I drink wine… things that I like that I had never been exposed to. But I never said, ‘I’m going to buy art to impress this crowd.’ That’s just ridiculous to me. I don’t live my life like that, because how could you be happy with yourself?” – Jay-Z
7. “I would run into the corner store, the bodega, and just grab a paper bag or buy juice – anything just to get a paper bag. And I’d write the words on the paper bag and stuff these ideas in my pocket until I got back. Then I would transfer them into the notebook.” – Jay-Z
8. “I’m far from being god, but I work god damn hard.” – Jay-Z
9. “I think relationships are broken up because of the media.” – Jay-Z
10. “Successful people have a bigger fear of failure than people who’ve never done anything because if you haven’t been successful, then you don’t know how it feels to lose it all.” – Jay-Z
11. “One of the reasons inequality gets so deep in this country is that everyone wants to be rich. That’s the American ideal. Poor people don’t like talking about poverty because even though they might live in the projects surrounded by other poor people and have, like, ten dollars in the bank, they don’t like to think of themselves as poor.” – Jay-Z
12. “I’ve never looked at myself and said that I need to be a certain way to be around a certain sort of people. I’ve always wanted to stay true to myself, and I’ve managed to do that. People have to accept that.” – Jay-Z
13. “My brands are an extension of me. They’re close to me. It’s not like running GM, where there’s no emotional attachment.” – Jay-Z
14. “The burden of poverty isn’t just that you don’t always have the things you need, it’s the feeling of being embarrassed every day of your life, and you’d do anything to lift that burden.” – Jay-Z
15. “When the TV version of Annie came on, I was drawn to it. It was the struggle of this poor kid in this environment and how her life changed. It immediately resonated.” – Jay-Z
16. “My thing is related to who I am as a person. The clothes are an extension of me. The music is an extension of me. All my businesses are part of the culture, so I have to stay true to whatever I’m feeling at the time, whatever direction I’m heading in. And hopefully, everyone follows.” – Jay-Z
17. “Rap for me is like making movies, telling stories, and getting the emotions of the songs through in just as deep a way. And I grew up in rap and movies the same way.” – Jay-Z
18. “Racism is taught in the home. We agree on that? Well, it’s very hard to teach racism to a teenager who’s listening to rap music and who idolizes, say, Snoop Dogg. It’s hard to say, ‘That guy is less than you.’ The kid is like, ‘I like that guy, he’s cool. How is he less than me?” – Jay-Z
19. “Growing up, politics never trickled down to the areas we come from. But people from Obama’s camp, and Obama himself, reached out to me and asked for my help on the campaign. We’ve sat and had dinner, and we’ve spoken on the phone. He’s a very sharp guy. Very charming. Very cool.” – Jay-Z
20. “They say a midget standing on a giant’s shoulders can see much further than the giant. So I got the whole rap world on my shoulders, they trying to see further than I am.” – Jay-Z
21st Jay-Z Quote – “I was forced to be an artist and a CEO from the beginning, so I was forced to be like a businessman because when I was trying to get a record deal, it was so hard to get a record deal on my own that it was either give up or create my own company.” – Jay-Z
22. “I grew up in Marcy Projects in Brooklyn, and my mom and pop had an extensive record collection, so Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder and all of those sounds and souls of Motown filled the house.” – Jay-Z
23. “Hip-hop is more about attaining wealth. People respect success. They respect big. They don’t even have to like your music. If you’re big enough, people are drawn to you.” – Jay-Z
24. “Wherever I go, I bring the culture with me, so that they can understand that it’s attainable. I didn’t do it any other way than through hip-hop.” – Jay-Z
25. “It’s hilarious a lot of times. You have a conversation with someone, and he’s like, ‘You speak so well!’ I’m like, ‘What do you mean? Do you understand that’s an insult?” – Jay-Z
26. “Hip-hop has done so much for racial relations, and I don’t think it’s given the proper credit. It has changed America immensely. I’m going to make a very bold statement: Hip-hop has done more than any leader, politician, or anyone to improve race relations.” – Jay-Z
27. “When you’re growing up, your dad is your superhero. Once you’ve let yourself fall that in love with someone, once you put him on such a high pedestal and he lets you down, you never want to experience that pain again.” – Jay-Z
28. “I have inherited two of the most important brands in hip-hop, Def Jam and Roc-A-Fella. Reid and Universal Music Group have given me the opportunity to manage the companies I have contributed to my whole career. I feel this is a giant step for me and the entire artist community.” – Jay-Z
29. “The average rap life is two or three albums. You’re lucky to get to your second album in rap!” – Jay-Z
30. “By the time I got to record my first album, I was 26, I didn’t need pen or paper – my memory had been trained just to listen to a song, think of the words, and lay them to tape.” – Jay-Z
31. “Everyone who makes music is a good collaborator at their foundation because in order to make music, you have to connect to it in a way that other people can’t.” – Jay-Z
32. “Do me a favor. Don’t do me no favors. I handle mine.” – Jay-Z
33. “You can want success all you want. But to get it, you can’t falter. You can’t slip, you can’t sleep, one eye open, for real, and forever.” – Jay-Z
34. “People respect success. They respect big. They don’t even have to like your music. If you’re big enough, people are drawn to you. “ – Jay-Z
35. “All I got is dreams. Nobody else believes. Nobody else can see. Nobody else but me. “ – Jay-Z
36. “Don’t tell me what was said about me… Tell me why they were so comfortable to say it to you.” – Jay-Z
37. “Everything evens up, you just wait. Even a garage can gets a steak. You are not even a garbage can, you have faith!” – Jay-Z
38. “You can pay for school but you can’t buy class. “ – Jay-Z
39. “You learn more in failure than you ever do in success. “ – Jay-Z
40. “We hustle out of a sense of hopelessness. Sort of a desperation. Through that desperation, we become addicted. But we feel we have nothing to list. So we offer you, well, we offer our lives. What do you bring to the table?” – Jay-Z
41. “I’m not afraid of dying. I’m afraid of not trying.” – Jay-Z
42. “I will not lose, for even in defeat, there’s a valuable lesson learned, so it evens up for me.” – Jay-Z
43. “A wise man told me don’t argue with fools. Because people from a distance can’t tell who is who.” – Jay-Z
44th Jay-Z Quote – “I’m not a businessman. I’m a business, man.” – Jay-Z
45. “Difficult takes a day, impossible takes a week.” – Jay-Z
46. “Either love me, or leave me alone.” – Jay-Z
47. “It’s a brand new world. Let me show you.” – Jay-Z
48. “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. Because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” – Jay-Z
49. “They talk. We live. Who cares what they say?” – Jay-Z
50. “Identity is a prison you can never escape, but the way to redeem your past is not to run from it, but to try to understand it, and use it as a foundation to grow.” – Jay-Z
51. “Those who are successful overcome their fears and take action. Those who aren’t submit to their fears and live with regrets.” – Jay-Z
52. “If ya’ll can’t already see, I ain’t worried about ya’ll, ‘cause I’m already me. “ – Jay-Z
53. “I’d rather die enormous than live dormant.” – Jay-Z
54. “I believe excellence is being able to perform at a high level over and over.” – Jay-Z
55. “If it’s you and me against the world, then so be it.” – Jay-Z
56. “We change people through conversation, not through censorship.” – Jay-Z
57. “I’m like a dog, I never speak, but I understand.” – Jay-Z
58. “I’m a hustler baby; I sell water to a well.” – Jay-Z
59. “If people don’t hate you, you’re probably not doing very big things.” – Jay-Z
60. “I believe everybody in the world is born with genius-level talent. Apply yourself to whatever you’re genius at and you can do anything in the world.” – Jay-Z
61. “I went through hell, I’m expecting heaven.” – Jay-Z
62. “Leave a mark they can’t erase, neither space nor time.” – Jay-Z
63. “Photoshoot fresh looking like wealth, I’m about to call the paparazzi on myself.” – Jay-Z
64. “Belief in oneself and knowing who you are, I mean, that’s the foundation for everything great.” – Jay-Z
65. “I sell ice in winter, I sell fire in hell.” – Jay-Z
66th Jay-Z Quote – “Jealousy is a weak emotion.” – Jay-Z
What’s your favorite Jay-Z Quote? Share your favorite quote in the comment section below!
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6 Inspiring Quotes From Lucille Ball That Will Motivate You to Stand Out and Reach for the Stars
The original “Queen of Comedy” Lucille “Lucy” Ball, continues to be an icon of fiery sass and humor for every generation. Her timeless comedic talent still sets the standard for those desiring to follow in her celebrated entertainment footsteps.
Here are six inspiring quotes from her that will motivate you to stand out from the crowd and never give up on your dreams:
1. “One of the things I learned the hard way, was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.”
In business and our personal lives, we are bombarded daily by outward criticism and inward self-doubt. In order to realise the success we strive for and attain the goals we hope to achieve, it’s important to practice a strong positive outlook.
Although Ball was known for being an inherently shy girl, when she was 15 years old, she convinced her mom to allow her to attend New York Drama School. The administrator of the school, unable to see the talent hidden behind the shyness, wrote to her mother telling her not to “waste her money and the school’s time with this shy, awkward young lady.”
Refusing to be deterred by the shortsighted criticism, Ball dug in her heels, overcame her shyness, and went on to become the talented comedic actress and icon we know and love today. Just imagine how unfortunate it would have been if she had taken the negative criticism to heart and decided to give up her passion.
2. “Luck? I don’t know anything about luck. I’ve never banked on it and I’m afraid of people who do. Luck to me is something else: Hard work—and realising what is opportunity and what isn’t.”
Today, we are very much conditioned to expect instant gratification in all areas of life. It’s important to remember, however, that true personal and professional success is achieved through tenacity and hard work. Very seldom does “luck” play a substantial role in building a solid and promising future.
Few people may realise that beyond the laughter and crazy shenanigans that Ball is so well known for, she was a trailblazing businesswoman who mapped out her professional path and keenly took advantage of opportunities that came her way.
Behind the scenes, she was co-creator, owner, and partner of Desilu Productions with her husband, Desi Arnaz. I Love Lucy was the first real sitcom developed by a husband and wife team, and under Desilu Studios, the show pioneered the multi-camera shot and filmed in front of a live audience—something no one else was doing at the time.
Being a female owner of a film production company in the 1960s was unprecedented. But, Ball didn’t stop there. Instead, she would eventually buy out Desi and become the first female CEO of a major television and movie production company. Her hard work and perseverance created a legacy to last for generations.
3. “I’d rather regret the things I have done than the things that I haven’t.”
Regrets are a fact of life both personally and professionally. However, most of us would probably admit that we learned some valuable things about ourselves from past mistakes and mishaps. Most would agree that our biggest regrets are related to the opportunities and experiences that we didn’t seize when we had the chance.
Ball’s career in the entertainment world was full of various ups and downs that included many B movies and lackluster performances. However, she continued to forge ahead learning from each and every experience. She was forty years old when she finally hit her stride and began her journey with I Love Lucy. Ball didn’t let the fact that Hollywood considered her to be “old” to stop her from fulfilling her dreams.
Instead of letting the long road of disappointments and closed doors discourage her, Ball refused to give up and found a way to create her own destiny and achieve the success that she had worked so hard for.
4. “I dyed my hair this crazy red to bid for attention. It has become a trademark, and I’ve got to keep it this way.”
We live in a culture where most of us just want to fit in. There is a pressure to conform to a set of expectations in both our professional and personal lives. However, it’s often when we take a risk to set ourselves apart, that doors of opportunities and experiences open for us.
For example, Ball’s natural hair colour was a light to medium brown with reddish tones. Early in her career, she bleached it blonde in hopes of being able to compete with the plethora of bombshell blondes of the era. She eventually realised, however, she needed to stand out, not blend in!
In a past interview, Ball is quoted stating, “Not being a beauty, I hated any part in a picture which depended on beauty. I resented work where looks were that important. There are so many glamour girls that I felt it was silly for me to try to compete with them.”
Dyeing her natural brown hair the colour red was one of the greatest risks Ball took early in her career, but it became one of the late comedian’s most beautiful physical features that helped her stand out and succeed in Hollywood. She shared, “I had to learn to concentrate on developing my personality—to have an individual approach. The way you feel about yourself has a lot to do with the impression you make.”
5. “The more things you do, the more you can do.”
We should never stop striving to learn new skills and grow in knowledge. Taking the steps to constantly evolve in our understanding of our professional and personal life—as well as the world around us—helps build a firm foundation for our present and future.
Ball was a true pioneer for the women of her time. She was not afraid to tackle new things or learn more about the production and business side of her career even though she was encroaching on a man’s world at the time. She knew that any knowledge she gained about the entertainment business would help ensure her future success.
For example, behind the scenes, Ball was an integral part of the business operations of Desilu Productions. She was one of the final voices in all decisions made regarding the show and the production company. And it didn’t stop there. In front of the camera, she portrayed a determined woman diligently trying to work outside of the home in various careers while still tackling the responsibilities of being a housewife and a mother. To put it simply, she just wasn’t scared to try something new.
It’s important to not let fear of failure, or the unknown, deter us from taking chances to break the mould and step out of our comfort zone. The possibilities for growth, success, and achievement are endless.
6. “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”
It’s quite profound how much we can learn from the fortitude and spunk exuded from Lucille Ball, the “Queen of Comedy.” As we’ve seen through these quotes, Ball refused to let others dictate who she would become or what she would achieve. Instead, she had a firm grasp on her own self-worth and was determined to forge ahead to fulfill her dreams.
She demonstrated that self-confidence and inner strength are vital to professional and personal success—a lesson that we would all be wise to remember.
Which one of the above Lucille Ball quotes was your favorite and why? Share your thoughts with us below!
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