15 Life Lessons Learned from Muhammad Ali

15 Life Lessons Learned from Muhammad Ali

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Arguably the greatest boxer in history, you have likely heard of Muhammad Ali. He was an Olympic gold medalist and world heavyweight boxing champion. Aside from being the greatest boxer, he was also a philanthropist and social activist.

He was a man who succeeded in everything he set his mind on. Lucky for us, he also has a lot of motivational quotes that anyone can relate to. He worked diligently to become as successful as he was, and he advised on how everyone else can, too.

We all go through hard days and have to learn tough lessons in life. Muhammad Ali shows that even the most successful people have to work hard to get to the top. His life lessons can teach everyone how to be better, more successful, and more driven in life.

Motivational Quotes from Muhammad Ali

1. “I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”

Training, practicing, and preparing aren’t the most exciting part of reaching your goals. Even still, you have to keep working at it and to better your abilities continuously. Remember, if you fight through the hard parts now, you’ll be successful in the long run.



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2. “Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”

By saying something is impossible, you are giving the word it’s meaning. You can change anything in your life. But, saying something is impossible will only force you to stay stuck where you are now.

Nothing is impossible, and if you want to change the world, you have to acknowledge that fact. Everything is possible. It all stems from how willing you are to make it happen. If you are motivated and dedicated to success, you will see how likely the impossible is.

3. “I am an ordinary man who worked hard to develop the talent I was given. I believed in myself, and I believe in the goodness of others.”

Success takes hard work, dedication, and talent. No individual reaches their goals if they don’t work hard to be better. If you believe in yourself and work hard, you will be able to do all the things you’ve ever dreamed of.



4. “Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them—a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina; they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.”

To achieve success, one must find their inner-drive, strength, and courage. Champions come from intrinsic motivation and not from the external circumstances of life. Mustering up the will to succeed points you in the right direction to becoming a champion.

5. “It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.”

If you believe in your skills and abilities, then you can achieve anything you set your mind to. When you don’t believe in yourself, you won’t have the determination and confidence to try and overcome challenges. Have faith in who you are and of your abilities. You’ll surprise yourself when you see what you are capable of.

6. “I don’t count my sit-ups; I only start counting when it starts hurting because they’re the only ones that count.”

You aren’t developing your skills when things are easy. It’s only when you face challenges that you can become better. Keep pushing yourself until you are uncomfortable. Only then can you become successful and reach all of your goals.

7. “It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.”

The one single thing stopping you from reaching your goals are the small things nagging at you. Whether it is discomfort along the way or a pessimistic attitude, you are the only one holding you back. Get past the small stuff and only focus on the goal ahead.



8. “If my mind can conceive it, and my heart can believe it—then I can achieve it.”

As explained before, you can do anything you set your mind to. If you can come up with it in your mind, make your heart believe it. When your heart feels it, you will be able to achieve it.

muhammad ali

9. “Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.”

Everyone has failed or felt defeated before. The most successful people have likely encountered it more often than you could believe.



Failure and defeat build character and help you see what it is you truly want. Use your failures as a learning opportunity so you can do better next time. Remember, only those who have felt defeated in the past can push ahead in an equal race and come out on top.

10. “I know where I’m going, and I know the truth, and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want.”

Be yourself. Do what you know is right for your life. You know who you are, and you know the truth about yourself. Don’t let anyone tell you differently. Always remember who you are and do not ever change for anyone. Keep your focus on where you are going, and don’t leave your path for anyone.

11. “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”

Repeating positive and inspiring affirmations to yourself can help you believe in yourself. You will see clearly what you were meant to be and how capable you are of reaching your goals. Once you believe in yourself, good things will begin to happen for you.

12. “Inside of a ring or out, ain’t nothing wrong with going down. It’s staying down that’s wrong.”

You can’t win every time, and things can’t always be perfect. It’s okay to mess up, to fail, or to do something imperfectly. The problem is when you don’t fix the issue or when you stop trying to do it again.

You have to get up and try again. Learn from your mistakes, work harder, and develop your strengths. As you go through these challenging times, you’re only getting better.

13. “The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.”

If you want to win, you have to work hard when no one is watching. The times that truly matter are when you are practicing and preparing for the big event to come. But if you don’t spend the time and put in the effort during those times, you have already lost. You must be dedicated and motivated to become better and work harder so that you can be successful.

14. “I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was. I figured that if I said it enough, I would convince the world that I really was the greatest.”

Have faith in yourself and say great things about who you are. Negative self-talk and thoughts are detrimental to all aspects of your life.

Instead, keep saying how great you are and telling yourself that you are capable of anything. The more often you say or think about these positive things about yourself, the closer you are to achieving them. You are what you believe you are.

15. “I never thought of losing, but now that it’s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life.”

Even the most successful people faced defeat at some point in life. They don’t stay down, though, and they work harder to do better next time. This tenacity is why they are successful.

They don’t like hard times, and setbacks hinder their growth and stop their achievements. When you lose, do the right thing and use it as a learning opportunity. This is the time to develop your character and fine-tune your strengths.

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Final Thoughts on Life Lessons Learned from Muhammad Ali

These life lessons learned from Muhammad Ali can help you when you need some inspiration or guidance. He fought to the top and reached great success even when obstacles hindered the progress. By following Muhammad Ali’s life lessons, you will know how to keep moving forward.

Even after he received a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease, Ali fought hard to maintain a life of dignity, enjoy his remaining days, and advocate for others. Even a terrible disease would not hold him back.

Remember these motivational quotes next time you need a confidence boost or a reminder of what you can do. Even the most successful people have experiences obstacles and setbacks, so don’t let them stop you. As Muhammad Ali explained, if you set your mind to it, you can do anything you can dream of.



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