Ahead of International Women’s Day we bring you our favourite quotes by women who inspire us in life. Sometimes they motivate us. Sometimes they shock us. Sometimes they humour us. Sometimes they bring us back to reality. But regardless, their words stick with us.

You have to care about how good you are and how good you feel, but not about how good people think you are or how good people think you look.~ Amy Poehler, in her book Yes Please

“If you don’t get out there and define yourself, you’ll be quickly and inaccurately be defined by others.” ~ Michelle Obama

“We should be choosing what we want to keep, not what we want to get rid of.” ~ Marie Kondo

Nothing is absolute. Everything changes, everything moves, everything revolves, everything flies and goes away.~ Frida Kahlo

An eye for an eye only leads to more blindness.~ Margaret Atwood

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you” ~ Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“If you’re not interested, you’re not interesting.” ~ Iris Apfel

In Ojibwe and Cree, leadership didn’t mean power; it meant caring.” ~ Tanya Talaga, in her book All Our Relations

“Aging is not “lost youth” but a new stage of opportunity and strength.” ~ Betty Friedan

“Every gift we offered was a genuine gift, because it represented a sacrifice and it answered a need, a desire or a dream”Kim Thúy, Ru

“They’ll tell you you’re too loud, that you need to wait your turn and ask the right people for permission. Do it anyway.” ~ Alexandria Ocasio Cortez

“Men often ask me, ‘Why are your female characters so paranoid?’ It’s not paranoia. It’s recognition of their situation.” ~ Margaret Atwood

“I hate to hear you talking so like a fine gentleman, and as if women were all fine ladies, instead of rational creatures. We none of us expect to be in smooth water all our days.” ~ Jane Austen

“There is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.” ~ Virginia Woolf

“Men should think twice before making widowhood women’s only path to power.” ~ Gloria Steinem

“You can be gorgeous at thirty, charming at forty, and irresistible for the rest of your life.” ~ Coco Chanel

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ~ Maya Angelou

Don’t feel stupid if you don’t like what everyone else pretends to love.” ~ Emma Watson

I want to be defined by the things I love — not by the things I hate. Not the things I’m afraid of. Not the things that haunt me in the middle of the night. I just think you are what you love.~ Taylor Swift, in her song Lover

*Lead in Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash