Published June 3, 2022
The pursuit of happiness is one of the basic and inalienable rights enshrined in the United States Constitution. But how are we to pursue happiness, exactly?
More importantly, how are we to pursue happiness when we can’t even agree as to what happiness really means?
For people who’ve had to live from paycheck to paycheck, happiness means never having to worry about money anymore. But then we often see people who never had to worry about money their entire life and are still unhappy.
It’s because of this that we all have different interpretations of what the pursuit of happiness really is. For some, it can be about living day to day like it’s their last. While for others, it’s making sure that they make someone happy every single day.
If you want to know more about other people’s perspectives on chasing happiness, here are some uplifting quotes on the pursuit of happiness:
Pursuit of Happiness Quotes
- Very little is needed to make a happy life. It is all within YOURSELF in your way of thinking. – Marcus Aurelius
- The Constitution only guarantees you the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself. – Benjamin Franklin
- Remember that happiness is a way of travel, not a destination. – Roy Goodman
- The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase: if you pursue happiness you’ll never find it. – Carrie Snow
- Our greatest happiness does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed us, but is always the result of a good conscience, good health, occupation, and freedom in all just pursuits. – Thomas Jefferson
- If there were in the world today any large number of people who desired their own happiness more than they desired the unhappiness of others, we could have a paradise in a few years. – Bertrand Russell
- To live happily is an inward power of the soul. – Aristotle
- If one speaks or acts with a pure mind, happiness follows like a shadow. – Buddha
- The purpose of our lives is to be happy. – The 14th Dalai Lama
- Positivity, confidence, and persistence are key in life, so never give up on yourself. – Khalid
- Happiness is found in doing, not merely possessing. – Napoleon Hill
- I think the pursuit of happiness is the pursuit of reality because illusion never leaves us ultimately happy. – Parker Palmer
- Happiness is the meaning and purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence. – Aristotle
- Action may not bring happiness but there is no happiness without action. – William James
- There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things that are beyond the power of our will. – Epictetus
- Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. – Mohandas Gandhi
- It takes great wit and interest and energy to be happy. The pursuit of happiness is a great activity. One must be open and alive. It is the greatest feat man has to accomplish. – Robert Herrick
- Some people cause happiness wherever they go, others whenever they go. – Oscar Wilde
- Happiness always looks small while you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and you learn at once how big and precious it is. – Maxim Gorky
- There’s no more powerful lesson than knowing that your setbacks will one day help you succeed. – Reshma Saujani
- Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it. – Groucho Marx
- Success is not the key to happiness, happiness is the key to success. – Herman Cain
- Essentially pursuit of happiness is saying, everything’s allowed until we come down on it. – Howard Rheingold
- It is not in the pursuit of happiness that we find fulfillment, it is in the happiness of pursuit. – Denis Waitley
- Ironically, the pursuit of happiness can lead us into the eternal trap of chasing unhappiness. – Justin Kan
- If you so choose, even the unexpected setbacks can bring new and positive possibilities. If you so choose, you can find value and fulfillment in every circumstance. – Ralph Marston
- The high road and positivity is never the easy way but always the best way. – Nancy Wilson
- It is the pursuit of happiness that brings us happiness, and not the happiness achieved. – Jack White
- Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy. – Guillaume Apollinaire
- Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities. – Aldous Huxley
- A happy life must be to a great extent a quiet life, for it is only in an atmosphere of quiet that true joy dare live. – Bertrand Russel
Quotes from the “Pursuit of Happyness” Movie
When talking about the pursuit of happiness, the movie “Pursuit of Happyness” (yes, it’s spelled with a “y”) always comes to mind. It’s a movie based on a true-to-life story of a homeless man who became one of the wealthiest people in the US.
But aside from its true-to-life plot and tear-jerking scenes, it’s also a rich source of inspirational quotes about life and pursuing happiness. Here are some of them:
- The balance in your life is more important than the balance in your checking account.
- The money thing will come. I know so many people who have so much more money than I. They are miserable. It is so important to be happy.
- It’s okay to fail; it’s not okay to quit.
- I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.
- Don’t just talk that talk, walk it and go forward. Also, the walk didn’t have to be long strides; baby steps counted too. Go forward.
- Always, always, pursue happiness.
- It can be done, but you have to make it happen.
- Others may look for all kinds of ways to diminish your worth. But what is inside you no one can take from you or tarnish.
- Wealth can also be that attitude of gratitude with which we remind ourselves everyday to count our blessings.
- There is no plan B for passion.
- Don’t ever let someone tell you, you can’t do something. Not even me. You got a dream, you got to protect it. People can’t do something themselves, they want to tell you you can’t do it. You want something, go get it. Period.
- I was homeless, but I wasn’t hopeless. I knew a better day was coming.
- The world is your oyster. It’s up to you to find the pearls.
- Strong people stand up for themselves. Stronger people stand up for others.
- I am strong because I’ve been weak. I am fearless because I’ve been afraid. I am wise because I’ve been foolish.
- Claim ownership of your dreams.
- You can only count on yourself. The cavalry ain’t coming.
- The secret to success: find something you love to do so much, you can’t wait for the sun to rise to do it all over again.
- It was right then that I started thinking about Thomas Jefferson on the Declaration of Independence and the part about our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And I remember thinking how did he know to put the pursuit part in there? That maybe happiness is something that we can only pursue and maybe we can actually never have it. No matter what. How did he know that?
- The future was uncertain, absolutely, and there were many hurdles, twists, and turns to come, but as long as I kept moving forward, one foot in front of the other, the voices of fear and shame, the messages from those who wanted to believe that I wasn’t good enough, would be stilled.
(Related: What Does Having a “Pure Soul” Mean?)
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About The Author
Judy Ponio is a professional writer and devoted Christian. She has a passion for writing about topics related to morality and helping the poor and homeless. She is the lead author for the Our Father’s House Soup Kitchen blog.
Correct Digital, Inc is paid by private donors to provide website digital marketing services to this non-profit organization.