22 Chinese proverbs that may inspire you

As it is Chinese (Lunar) New Year until February 19, I think it is a good idea to learn from and be inspired by Chinese culture.

Some of the greatest minds originated from China, their philosophies and ideas span back centuries BC. Chinese Philosopher Confucius is arguably one of the most well-known as he created the Confucianism way of life. Below I have listed some of his proverbs, which I believe we can apply to our own lives today. I have also included Chinese proverbs and other Chinese philosophers quotes to inspire you. Take time to reflect upon what these sayings could mean to you.

Chinese Proverbs

“Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without one.”  

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”

“With true friends, even water drunk together is sweet enough.”

“One cannot refuse to eat just because there is a chance of being choked.”


“For the wise man looks into space and he knows there is no limited dimensions”.

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated”.

“To know that you know, and to know that you don’t know – that is the real wisdom”.

“Sincerity and truth are the basis of every virtue”.

“The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence”.

Lao Tzu

“The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step”.

“He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still”.

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be”.

“Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power”.

Han Fei

“I believe it is impossible to be sure of anything”.

“It is not difficult to know a thing; what is difficult is to know how to use what you know”.

“No benefit is more constant than simplicity; no happiness more constant than peace”.

Hu Shih

“What is sacred among one people may be ridiculous in another; and what is despised or rejected by one cultural group, may in a different environment become the cornerstone for a great edifice of strange grandeur and beauty”.  

“The underlying sickness of human life is an unwillingness to look with open eyes at the condition of the world”.

Xun Kuang

“The person attempting to travel two roads at once will get nowhere”.

“Those whose character is mean and vicious will rouse others to animosity against them”.

“When you locate good in yourself, approve of it with determination. When you locate evil in yourself, despise it as something detestable”.

If you’d like to read more, these websites below have lots more proverbs for you to enjoy.

BrainyQuote, Successories and Awaken the Greatness Within.  

Let me know if you have any more that you love in the comments below.

Happy Chinese New Year!

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