Betty White began her acting career over eighty years ago (in 1939!), landing her first role just weeks after she graduated from high school. After that, she earned the respect and admiration of her co-workers and gained legions of adoring fans.

Ms. White wore many hats with ease. These included actor, comedian, author, Emmy-award winner, and animal welfare and environmental activist. It seems there’s nothing she couldn’t accomplish. So what was the key to her long ride at the top of Hollywood? She owed her key to longevity in a fickle industry–and in life–to a positive attitude and drive to succeed in life despite the odds.

Not only was Betty White famous for her sunny personality, but she also keenly observed the world around her. When you read on to these motivational quotes about life, you’ll agree!

Here are some Betty White motivational quotes that will be sure to restore your can-do attitude.

1 – “It’s your outlook on life that counts. If you take yourself lightly and don’t take yourself so seriously, pretty soon, you can find the humor in our everyday lives. And sometimes it can be a lifesaver.”

Think about the first sentence of this quote. Your outlook on life is everything! If you expect great things to happen, and you take steps to ensure your ultimate success, you’ll make them your reality. But don’t take yourself too seriously. Instead, take time out once in a while to enjoy laughing with your friends–it’s an ideal way to destress.

2 – “I think it’s your mental attitude. So many of us start dreading age in high school, and that’s a waste of a lovely life. ‘Oh… I’m 30, oh, I’m 40, oh, 50.’ Make the most of it.”

Age is just a number, according to this savvy nonagenarian. Don’t squander today worrying about what will happen as you age. Instead, live in the present and enjoy every moment you have on this beautiful planet. Whether you’re of the Greatest Generation (like Ms. White), a baby boomer, millennial, or from Gen Z–your time to shine is right now.

3 – “A lot of people think this is a goodie-two-shoes talking. But we do have a tendency to complain rather than celebrating who we are. I learned at my mother’s knee it’s better to appreciate what’s happening… I think we kind of talk ourselves into the negative sometimes.”

Complaining, according to Betty White, is an enormous waste of precious time. Rather than keeping a list of grievances, focus on being thankful for all the blessings in your life. So cast aside the negatives. And, whether you give thanks for a job you love, a roof over your head, or food in your children’s belly, focus on appreciating what you do have.

4 – “I’m a big cockeyed optimist. I try to accentuate the positive as opposed to the negative.”

While some people view optimists with a touch of mockery in this hectic world, Ms. White knows the truth. It’s that ongoing commitment to the positivity that keeps her relevant and working, even in her late nineties.

5 – When I pontificate, it sounds so, you know, ‘Oh, well, she’s preaching.’ I’m not preaching, but I think maybe I learned it from my animal friends. Kindness and consideration of somebody besides yourself. I think that keeps you feeling young. I really do.

Betty White is an animal welfare activist and takes inspiration from her furry buddies. Furthermore, she believes that we should all give back to some charitable cause in whatever way we each can. A charitable heart keeps us focused on serving others, teaching us kindness and humility that keeps us young at heart.

6 – “If one has no sense of humor, one is in trouble.”

Arguably, this actor landed her most famous role in the 1980s hit comedy series The Golden Girls. On the show, she played the adorably ditzy character, Rose. In the series, Rose knew how to muddle through the challenges of life with a sharp sense of humor. That sounds suspiciously a little like Betty White herself!

7 – “I didn’t know what Facebook was, and now that I do know what it is, I have to say, it sounds like a huge waste of time.”

Life is for living, here and now! Make time for genuine in-person connections with your friends and loved ones. Don’t sacrifice valuable time that you could spend on living your authentic life behind a computer screen. Squandering time on social media when you could be building relationships or your career is wasted at the end of your day.

8 – “Anger tears me up inside. My own…or anyone else’s.”

Anger is a powerful and harmful emotion. It erodes away the depths of your very soul and causes you anguish and pain. So don’t waste your time feeling upset or angry. Learn how to cope with your anger–and how to deflect the negative emotions of others.

Instead of staying mad at someone who wronged you, learn coping strategies to release the emotions, forgive, let go, and move on to more positive pursuits.

9 – “Wilderness is harder and harder to find these days on this beautiful planet, and we’re abusing our planet to the point of almost no return.”

Does this Betty White quote sound more ominous to you than the others? Here, she issues a dire warning. We must find ways to stop the abuse of Planet Earth before it is too late. Deforestation, species extinction, and global warming are already in motion.

She advocates for everyone doing their part to stop the harmful actions. Some ideas?

  • Shop at a farmer’s market for organic veggies (no pesticides!)
  • Opt for reusable shopping bags
  • Recycle your water bottles–or better yet, invest in reusable travel cups
  • Turn your air conditioning up just a degree, or your heat down a degree, to save energy.

You can make small changes and become part of the solution.

10 – “Retirement is not in my vocabulary. They aren’t going to get rid of me that way.”

Ms. White says, “Who me? Retire?”

An active lifestyle–including working, workouts, and living in a two-story home where she walks the steps every day–keep this actor in physically fit shape.

More importantly, her work gives her drive and a sense of purpose and keeps her mind as sharp as it’s ever been. Doing the job she loves keeps her young at heart if not in numbers.

11 – “You don’t luck into integrity. You work at it.”

A long life spent in Hollywood offered many temptations to this funny lady. However, she made conscious decisions to remain true to herself and a belief system instead of being sucked down the rabbit hole.

Integrity means doing the right thing, always, even when it’s challenging to do so. Resisting the temptations of stardom probably did not come any easier to Betty White than it would to anyone of us! Trusting her moral compass has served this lady throughout her long career.

12 – “I just make it my business to get along with people so I can have fun. It’s that simple.”

This actor makes people a priority. Building positive relationships and loyal friends gives her a support system that’s much needed as we age. In fact, these very relationships offer you a network of people with whom you can be yourself and have fun. And, at the end of the day, isn’t that what life is all about?

motivational quotes from strong women like Betty White
By photo by Alan Light, CC BY 2.0,

Final Thoughts About These Motivational Quotes by Betty White

After reading these motivational quotes by Betty White, you can’t help but be inspired to be a kinder, more motivated person! Her many years of success in a tough industry prove that nice guys–and gals–really can finish first!