Inspiring Steve Jobs Quotes on Passion, Life and Technology

Steve Jobs changed the world.

Enjoying this?
I've got some bonus content for you. Get access to more motivational and practical stuff, and receive weekly updates.

Most of us enjoy his legacy every day, but what more we can do is learn from what he had to say, read his thoughts on important stuff and try to think about it, pay attention to what truly matters and see life, death, time and technology through his eyes.

Here are some of the deepest, wittiest and wisest things Steve Jobs has said about the world we live in:

30 Steve Jobs Quotes to Inspire You to Pursue Your Passion in Life

  1. Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
  2. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.
  3. Older people sit down and ask, ‘What is it?’ but the boy asks, ‘What can I do with it?’.
  4. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
  5. Everyone here has the sense that right now is one of those moments when we are influencing the future.
  6. For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
  7. And it comes from saying no to 1,000 things to make sure we don’t get on the wrong track or try to do too much. We’re always thinking about new markets we could enter, but it’s only by saying no that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.
  8. The design of the Mac wasn’t what it looked like, although that was part of it. Primarily, it was how it worked. To design something really well, you have to get it. You have to really grok what it’s all about. It takes a passionate commitment to really thoroughly understand something, chew it up, not just quickly swallow it.
  9. The system is that there is no system. That doesn’t mean we don’t have process. Apple is a very disciplined company, and we have great processes. But that’s not what it’s about. Process makes you more efficient.
  10. Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.
  11. You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
  12. My favourite things in life don’t cost any money. It’s really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.
  13. Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.
  14. Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.
  15. That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.
  16. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.
  17. Stay hungry, stay foolish.
  18. It’s not a faith in technology. It’s faith in people.
  19. I have a great respect for incremental improvement, and I’ve done that sort of thing in my life, but I’ve always been attracted to the more revolutionary changes. I don’t know why. Because they’re harder. They’re much more stressful emotionally. And you usually go through a period where everybody tells you that you’ve completely failed.
  20. And no, we don’t know where it will lead. We just know there’s something much bigger than any of us here.
  21. To turn really interesting ideas and fledgling technologies into a company that can continue to innovate for years, it requires a lot of disciplines.
  22. Japan’s very interesting. Some people think it copies things. I don’t think that anymore. I think what they do is reinvent things. They will get something that’s already been invented and study it until they thoroughly understand it. In some cases, they understand it better than the original inventor.
  23. These technologies can make life easier, can let us touch people we might not otherwise. You may have a child with a birth defect and be able to get in touch with other parents and support groups, get medical information, the latest experimental drugs. These things can profoundly influence life. I’m not downplaying that.
  24. It’s hard to tell with these Internet startups if they’re really interested in building companies or if they’re just interested in the money. I can tell you, though: If they don’t really want to build a company, they won’t luck into it. That’s because it’s so hard that if you don’t have a passion, you’ll give up.
  25. You know, my main reaction to this money thing is that it’s humorous, all the attention to it, because it’s hardly the most insightful or valuable thing that’s happened to me.
  26. Things don’t have to change the world to be important.
  27. Technology is nothing. What’s important is that you have a faith in people, that they’re basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they’ll do wonderful things with them.
  28. Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful, that’s what matters to me.
  29. Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works.
  30. When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back.

See also:

Steve Jobs and The 7 Rules of Success
10 Great Life Lessons from The Founder of Apple

Image by Johan Larsson

Lidiya K

Lidiya K

Author, blogger and podcaster in the fields of self-improvement and life hacking. Creator of Let's Reach Success.
Full-time freelance writer. Lifestyle designer.
Lidiya K

7 Comments

Submit a Comment
  1. Great!
    #6 – powerful
    #14. I’ve been taught that there are 2 kinds of innovators: the Connector, and Steve was such; the other is Creator who really draws new ideas from inside himself, not from any other source.

    I love his outlook on money.

Leave a Reply