We only get so many moments in our lifetime, and we can’t relive a single one. All we can do is grab ahold of the present and make it count. These inspirational quotes prove that time is precious and help motivate us to squeeze every last bit of joy we can out of the moments we have left on this earth.
15 Inspirational Quotes that Prove Time is Precious
One of the greatest lessons that time teaches us is that every last moment matters. These quotes below really drive home the message that time is precious. I hope they inspire you to make the most of every second that you have and live a more meaningful life. Enjoy!
Time is free, but it’s priceless
Time is the one thing that even the richest man can’t own. It’s absolutely free, but also beyond priceless.
It’s far more valuable than money
They say time is money, but it’s far more valuable than dollars and cents. No one can actually buy time. Oh sure, maybe you can buy gadgets to speed up boring tasks or hire people to do them for you, but you’re not really buying time. You’re buying ways to better spend it.
Time doesn’t give you “roll-over” minutes
This truly is the best advice ever. The fact is, we all start off each morning with the same exact number of seconds. No one, no matter how rich they are, can buy extra “time credits,” so to speak, and there are no “roll-over” minutes. Every second is a “use it or lose it” deal.
If you lose it, you can never get it back
Have you ever really thought about how much precious time we waste on things that don’t really matter? How many hours have we spent arguing politics with people that we don’t even know on social media (or worse, with people we DO know and love)? How many days, months or years did we lose with loved ones because we were holding grudges? How much of our lifetime did we devote to anger, animosity, and misery? Every last one of those moments is something that we’ll never, ever, ever get back. After all, as Franklin said, lost time is never found again.
Time flows by like a river
Time truly is like a river. Sometimes, it’s a lazy flow, slow and steady. We can hop on a raft and just drift along. Other times, like after a storm, it’s a raging river. All we can do is throw on our life vests and hope we don’t get pulled under. Whether it’s flowing fast or slow, though, you can never reach in and touch the same water twice.
It’s the universe’s greatest paradox.
The universe is full of mysteries, but none are quite so baffling as time. It’s one of the only things I can think of that is happening right now yet is both over and yet to come.
Time moves both too fast and too slow. It’s over in a blink and lasts an eternity.
Inconsistency is the only thing that’s consistent about time. We all experience a minute differently. A minute spent in pain seems to last a lifetime, while one spent in bliss is over in an instant. But as Henry Van Dyke says, for those who love, time is an eternity. After all, while time is short, love never ends.
If we pay attention, time will show us what we really care about
Look back to those days that flew right on by. What were you doing and who were you with? Those happy memories are time’s way of teaching you what matters most to you.
You’ll never regret the moments spent cherishing loved ones…
Anyone who has ever lost a loved one suddenly can tell you that tomorrow is never promised. When they’re gone, you’ll regret every last second that you spent being angry at them, arguing with them, or not speaking to them. You’ll never, ever, ever regret the moments that you spent cherishing them, though.
…or doing something that brings you joy!
This is one of my favorite “what is life about” quotes, if that makes sense. You’ll also never regret the moments that you spent doing something that you love! It doesn’t matter if you’re chasing your dreams, playing games with your kids, or just passing a lazy day re-reading your favorite book for the 50th time. If you’re happy, then it’s time well spent!
So count your days by sensation and not seconds.
I want you to think back to yesterday and try something. Grab a calculator and start with 1440 (the number of minutes in a day). Subtract the time you spent sleeping (since it’s really neither positive nor negative). Next, subtract every moment that you spent doing something that made you miserable, or that you spent making someone else miserable. What’s left over is the amount of time you spent truly living. Are you happy with that number?
Don’t waste time living someone else’s life…
This is one of my favorite “time is precious” quotes because it’s a good reminder to write our own stories. We waste so much of our lives living by someone else’s rules and worrying about how others are judging us. We blast their opinions so loud in our heads that we can’t hear our own. Our lives would be so much richer and more meaningful if we actually lived our own lives.
…or telling yourself that you don’t have enough of it to do what you love.
I was conflicted about including this one because it’s only sort of true. I don’t think that saying “I don’t have time” is the same thing as saying “I don’t want to.” For some people, it really is a matter of time. When you’re working 18 hours a day just to keep up with rising food and housing costs, there really isn’t much left over to pursue your passions. But I do think that we can take the spirit of the quote to inspire us to prioritize our time. If we can carve out even an hour a week to pursue our goals, it’s still a start!
Use the time we have left to leave the world a better place than we found it
This Lord of the Rings quote really hits hard during times like these. There are so many things going on that we wish “need not have happened” in our time. We can’t change the past or undo what’s been done. We can only decide how to use the time we have left to make sure that our children and grandchildren have a better future.
We never realize how fast time flies until it’s gone
I’ll leave you with one last short quote from the late, great Dr. Seuss: How did it get so late so soon? It’s something we all wonder at the end of every wonderful day and at the close of every one of life’s most epic chapters. If you’re curious, though, the full quote is actually “How did it get so late so soon? It’s night before it’s afternoon. December is here before it’s June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?” This is also one of my favorite inspiring friendship quotes because time with good friends always flies by.
45 More Amazing Time Quotes to Remind You to Make Every Second Count
There are so many other “time is precious” quotes that I didn’t get to use above because they didn’t fit the story I was trying to tell through them. Here are a bunch more that I find really inspiring!
- “One day spent with someone you love can change everything.”―
- “There comes a time when the world gets quiet and the only thing left is your own heart. So you’d better learn the sound of it. Otherwise you’ll never understand what it’s saying.”― Sarah Dessen
- “Don’t waste your time in anger, regrets, worries, and grudges. Life is too short to be unhappy.” ― Roy T. Bennett
- “It has been said, ‘time heals all wounds.’ I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone.” ― Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
- “The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.” —Abraham Lincoln
- “Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.”― Mother Theresa
- “Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.”―
- “Time is the longest distance between two places.” ― Tennessee Williams
- “Here we are, trapped in the amber of the moment. There is no why.”― Kurt Vonnegut
- “Time can be a greedy thing-sometimes it steals the details for itself.” ― Khaled Hosseini
- “Time is an illusion.” ― Albert Einstein
- Time is a very misleading thing. All there is ever, is the now. We can gain experience from the past, but we can’t relive it; and we can hope for the future, but we don’t know if there is one.”
― George Harrison
- “You can’t turn back the clock. But you can wind it up again.” —Bonnie Prudden
- “Time is a game played beautifully by children.” —Heraclitus
- “One day you’re 17 and you’re planning for someday. And then quietly, without you ever really noticing, someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life.” —John Green
- “Seize the day, then let it go.” —Marty Rubin
- “The less one has to do, the less time one finds to do it in.” —Lord Chesterfield
- “Own time or time will own you.” —Brian Norgard
- “The present time has one advantage over every other—it is our own.” —Charles Caleb Colton
- “Time does not pass; it continues.” —Marty Rubin
- “There’s only one thing more precious than our time, and that’s who we spend it on.” —Leo Christopher
- “Time is an equal opportunity employer. Each human being has exactly the same number of hours and minutes every day. Rich people can’t buy more hours. Scientists can’t invent new minutes. And you can’t save time to spend it on another day. Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving. No matter how much time you’ve wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow.” —Denis Waitley
- “There’s never enough time to do it right, but there’s always enough time to do it over.” —Jack Bergman
- “I am not particularly interested in saving time; I prefer to enjoy it.” — Eduardo Galeano
- “The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.” — C.S. Lewis
- “Those who make the worst use of their time are the first to complain of its brevity.”― Jean de La Bruyère
- “It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
- “Being with you and not being with you is the only way I have to measure time.”― Jorge Luis Borges
- The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.” — Albert Einstein
- “To live is so startling, it leaves little time for anything else.” — Emily Dickinson
- “There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment.” — Sarah Dessen
- “They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” — Andy Warhol
- “An inch of time is an inch of gold, but you can’t buy that inch of time with an inch of gold.” — Chinese Proverb
- “A man who dares to waste an hour of time has not discovered the value of life.” — Charles Darwin
- “You may delay, but time will not.”― Benjamin Franklin
- “Time is a slippery thing: lose hold of it once, and its string might sail out of your hands forever.”―
- “The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.” — Michael Altshuler
- “Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” — William Penn
- “Time flies over us but leaves its shadow behind.” —Nathaniel Hawthorne
- “There are memories that time does not erase… Forever does not make loss forgettable, only bearable.”―
- “Time takes it all, whether you want it to or not.” — Stephen King
- “Although we try to control it in a million different ways, the only things you can ever really do to time are enjoy it or waste it. That’s it.” —A.J. Compton
- “The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” — Leo Tolstoy
- “Enjoy yourself. It’s later than you think.” -Chinese proverb
- “I wish I could turn back the clock and find you sooner so I can love you longer.” — Unknown
Time is precious, and we never realize how fast it all flies by until it’s gone. So make the very most out of each fleeting moment. Hold onto your most cherished memories from the past and let the rest go. Look forward to your future and work towards making your dreams come true. But most important of all, live- truly LIVE- right there in the present. This precise moment right now is the only one that’s guaranteed.