56 Most Entertaining and Creative Bruce Lee Quotes

Bruce Lee Quotes

Bruce Lee, Chinese name Li Jun Fan, was born on 27th November 1940, San Francisco, California, and died on 20th July 1973, Hong Kong. He is an American-born film actor famous for his martial arts prowess, popularizing martial art movies and scenes in the 1970s.

Although he was born in San Francisco, he grew up in Hong Kong. Lee was introduced to the entertainment industry by his dad at an early age. He began appearing in films while still a kid and was occasionally cast as a juvenile delinquent or rather a street urchin. Bruce Lee’s parents were disturbed by his run-ins with the police and street fights that they sent him back to the United States after he turned 18. He finished high school and pursued philosophy and drama at the University of Washington.

While in Seattle U.S., he opened his first martial arts school and later in 1964 relocated to Oakland to found a second school.  It was during this time that he developed his technique- jeet Kune do that combined boxing, ancient kung fu fencing, and philosophy. He drew attention from a television producer after he was spotted giving a kung fu demonstration at a tournament in Los Angeles and was shown as a sidekick Kato in The Green Hornet- a television series in 1966-1967. Bruce Lee’s entertainment is loved by many for his comic acts and inspiring talks. Below are his most famous quotes.

Bruce Lee Quotes

1. “If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done. Make at least one definite move daily toward your goal.”– Bruce Lee

2. “Life is never stagnation. It is constant movement, un-rhythmic movement, as we as constant change. Things live by moving and gain strength as they go.”– Bruce Lee

3. “The knowledge and skills you have achieved Bruce to be forgotten so you can float comfortably in emptiness, without obstruction.”– Bruce Lee

4. “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”– Bruce Lee

5. “If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.”– Bruce Lee

6. “All fixed set patterns are incapable of adaptability or pliability. The truth is outside of all fixed patterns.”– Bruce Lee

7. “To me, the extraordinary aspect of martial arts lies in its simplicity. The easy way is also the right way, and martial arts is nothing at all special; the closer to the true way of martial arts, the less wastage of expression there is.”– Bruce Lee

8. “Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.”– Bruce Lee

9. “Life’s battles don’t always go to the stronger or faster man. But sooner or later the man who wins, is the man who thinks he can.”– Bruce Lee

10. “You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend.”– Bruce Lee

11. “Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.”– Bruce Lee

12. “Reality is apparent when one ceases to compare. There is ‘what is’ only when there is no comparison at all, and to live with what is, is to be peaceful.”– Bruce Lee

13. “Many people dedicate their lives to actualizing a concept of what they should be like, rather than actualizing themselves. This difference between self-actualization and self-image actualization is very important. Most people live only for their image.”– Bruce Lee

14. “The word ‘superstar’ is an illusion.”– Bruce Lee

15. “To spend time is to pass it in a specified manner. To waste time is to expend it thoughtlessly or carelessly. We all have time to either spend or waste and it is our decision what to do with it. But once passed, it is gone forever.”– Bruce Lee

16.  “In order to taste my cup of water, you must first empty your cup.”– Bruce Lee

17. “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”– Bruce Lee

18. “The mind is like a fertile garden in which anything that is planted, flowers or weeds, will grow.”– Bruce Lee

19. “Emotion can be the enemy, if you give into your emotion, you lose yourself. You must be at one with your emotion, because the body always follows the mind.”– Bruce Lee

20. “You must accept the fact that there is no help but self-help. I cannot tell you how to gain freedom since freedom exists within you.”– Bruce Lee

21. “Anxiety is the gap between the NOW and the THEN. So if you are in the NOW, you can’t be anxious, because your excitement flows immediately into ongoing spontaneous activity.”– Bruce Lee

22. “Do not have an attitude, open yourself and focus yourself and express yourself. Reject external form that fails to express internal reality.”– Bruce Lee

23. “Sincere thought means thought of concentration (quiet awareness). The thought of a distracted mind cannot be sincere.”– Bruce Lee

24. “Here now, forever more our lives must part. My path leads there and yours another way; I know not where tomorrow’s path may lead, nor what the future holds.”– Bruce Lee

25. “Learning is never cumulative, it is a movement of knowing which has no beginning and no end.’– Bruce Lee

26. “Those who are unaware they are walking in darkness will never seek the light.”– Bruce Lee

27. “Take things as they are. Punch when you have to punch. Kick when you have to kick.”– Bruce Lee

Related: Steven Seagal’s Funniest Quotes 

28. “It is not a shame to be knocked down by other people. The important thing is to ask when you’re being knocked down, ‘Why am I being knocked down?’ If a person can reflect in this way, then there is hope for this person.”– Bruce Lee

29. “The consciousness of self is the greatest hindrance to the proper execution of all physical action.”– Bruce Lee

30. “Do not be tense, just be ready, not thinking but not dreaming, not being set but being flexible. It is being “wholly” and quietly alive, aware and alert, ready for whatever may come.”– Bruce Lee

31. “Everything you do, if not in a relaxed state will be done at a lesser level than you are proficient. Thus the tensed expert marksman will aim at a level less than his/her student.”– Bruce Lee

32. “If you want to learn to swim jump into the water. On dry land no frame of mind is ever going to help you.”– Bruce Lee

33. “The change is from inner to outer. We start by dissolving our attitude not by altering outer conditions.”– Bruce Lee

34. “If you knew you had to fight for your life tomorrow, would you change your training today?”– Bruce Lee

35. “Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way round or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.”–  Bruce Lee

36. “Choose the positive. You have choice, you are master of your attitude, choose the positive, the constructive. Optimism is a faith that leads to success.”– Bruce Lee

37. “Understanding requires not just a moment of perception, but a continuous awareness, a continuous state of inquiry without conclusion.”– Bruce Lee

38. “You just wait. I’m going to be the biggest Chinese Star in the world.”– Bruce Lee

39. “Ever since I was a child I have had this instinctive urge for expansion and growth. To me, the function and duty of a quality human being is the sincere and honest development of one’s potential.”– Bruce Lee

40. “Don’t fear failure. Not failure, but low aim, is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.”– Bruce Lee

41. “Forget about winning and losing; forget about pride and pain. Let your opponent graze your skin and you smash into his flesh; let him smash into your flesh and you fracture his bones; let him fracture your bones and you take his life! Do not be concerned with escaping safely – lay your life before him!!”– Bruce Lee

Related: Chuck Norris – his best quotes

42. “Do not deny the classical approach, simply as a reaction, or you will have created another pattern and trapped yourself there.”– Bruce Lee

43. “The second-hand artist blindly following his sensei or sifu accepts his pattern. As a result, his action is and, more importantly, his thinking become mechanical. His responses become automatic, according to set patterns, making him narrow and limited.”– Bruce Lee

44. “Cease negative mental chattering. If you think a thing is impossible, you’ll make it impossible. Pessimism blunts the tools you need to succeed.”– Bruce Lee

45. “What you habitually think largely determines what you will ultimately become.”– Bruce Lee

46. “Defeat is a state of mind; no one is ever defeated until defeat has been accepted as a reality.”– Bruce Lee

47. “There is no such thing as maturity. There is instead an ever-evolving process of maturing. Because when there is a maturity, there is a conclusion and a cessation. That’s the end. That’s when the coffin is closed. You might be deteriorating physically in the long process of aging, but your personal process of daily discovery is ongoing. You continue to learn more and more about yourself every day.”– Bruce Lee

48. “To be what I term a ‘quality’ human being one has to be transparently real and have the courage to be what he is.”– Bruce Lee

49. “If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves. Moving, be like water. Still, be like a mirror. Respond like an echo.”– Bruce Lee

50. “In order to control myself I must first accept myself by going with and not against my nature.”– Bruce Lee

51. “Loneliness is only an opportunity to cut adrift and find yourself. In solitude you are least alone.”– Bruce Lee

52. “The three most difficult things in life are: 1. To keep a secret. 2. To forget an injury. 3. To make good use of leisure.”– Bruce Lee

53. “A martial artist has to take responsibility for himself and accept the consequences of his own doing.”– Bruce Lee

54. “I’ve come to understand that life is best lived, not conceptualized.”– Bruce Lee

55. “Stop wasting time in playing a role or a concept. Instead, learn to ACTUALIZE YOURSELF, your potential.”– Bruce Lee

56. “Practice makes perfect. After a long time of practicing, our work will become natural, skillfull, swift, and steady.”– Bruce Lee

Top 10 Bruce Lee Moments

See Bruce’s top 10 best ever fights, including scenes from the 1972 Way of the Dragon, 1973’s Enter the Dragon, 1971’s Fist of Fury and of course 1978’s Game of Death.

Watch and enjoy!


Bruce Lee is occasionally regarded as the greatest when it comes to martial arts skills. He had mastered the skills perfectly such that many went to him to understand the skills, which made him open his first martial art school in Seatle U.S.

Although he died decades ago, Bruce Lee’s influence is still felt by today’s generation.  He has continued his legacy on modern combat sports such as karate, judo, boxing, mixed martial arts as well as modern popular culture including comic, film television, video games, and animations. His philosophy is great and his wise words will help you deal with your everyday challenges.

Finally, see our favorite quotes about the martial arts

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