127 Motivational Quotes for Recovery & Overcoming Addiction

Can Addiction Quotes Help Move You Towards Recovery?

I approached reading and writing affirmations with skepticism when I was first introduced to the process. Once I got into the routine, however, of reading and writing them, my mind was changed. Similarly, quotes about addiction can seem useless; however, if you are skeptical, give them a chance.

Not because they are magic or will cure your addiction immediately, but, because they are but one valuable resource that can steer you in the direction of recovery. Addiction quotes will reveal people who you can relate to and give you insights into the minds of those who have struggled with the same defeating thoughts you have struggled with.

There are 100 quotes on this page from authors, celebrities, historical figures, philosophers and others just like you. They are from those who are either in the midst of their struggle, are coming out of it or are in full recovery.


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“Believe more deeply. Hold your face up to the light, even though for the moment you do not see.”
~Bill Wilson, cofounder Alcoholics Anonymous

quotes about addiction

Read them and find your way back to recovery.



Addiction Quotes by Celebrities

“I have other obligations now – the show, my family, my life… though I know that without my sobriety I wouldn’t have any of those things.”
~Rob Lowe

“I got sober. I stopped killing myself with alcohol. I began to think: ‘Wait a minute – if I can stop doing this, what are the possibilities? And slowly it dawned on me that it was maybe worth the risk.”
~Carl Ferguson

“Amy [Winehouse] changed pop music forever, I remember knowing there was hope, and feeling not alone because of her. She lived jazz, she lived the blues.”
~Lady Gaga

“Getting sober was one of the three pivotal events in my life, along with becoming an actor and having a child. Of the three, finding my sobriety was the hardest thing.”
~Gary Oldman

quotes on addiction

“Even as a junkie I stayed true [to vegetarianism] – ‘I shall have heroin, but I shan’t have a hamburger.’ What a sexy little paradox.”
~Russell Brand

“Cocaine for me was a place to hide. Most people get hyper on coke. It slowed me down. Sometimes it made me paranoid and impotent, but mostly it just made me withdrawn.”
~Robin Williams

“There was a reason my first substantial role after rehab was to play a maniac whose personal story ended badly. I knew what it was like to go those dark places. I played a guy who died as a result of his abuse.”
~Charlie Sheen

“Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it.”
~Bill Cosby

Addiction Quotes by Authors

“The question is frequently asked: Why does a man become a drug addict? The answer is that he usually does not intend to become an addict. You don’t wake up one morning and decide to be a drug addict. It takes at least three months’ shooting twice a day to get any habit at all. And you don’t really know what junk sickness is until you have had several habits. It took me almost six months to get my first habit, and then the withdrawal symptoms were mild. I think it no exaggeration to say it takes about a year and several hundred injections to make an addict. The questions, of course, could be asked: Why did you ever try narcotics? Why did you continue using it long enough to become an addict? You become a narcotics addict because you do not have strong motivations in the other direction. Junk wins by default. I tried it as a matter of curiosity. I drifted along taking shots when I could score. I ended up hooked. Most addicts I have talked to report a similar experience. They did not start using drugs for any reason they can remember. They just drifted along until they got hooked. If you have never been addicted, you can have no clear idea what it means to need junk with the addict’s special need. You don’t decide to be an addict. One morning you wake up sick and you’re an addict.”
~William S. Burroughs

“The unfortunate thing about this world is that good habits are so much easier to give up than bad ones.”
~Somerset Maugham

Take a Chance - Dale Carnegie

“Take a chance! All life is a chance. The man who goes the furthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare.”
~Dale Carnegie

“Did you ever see an unhappy horse? Did you ever see bird that had the blues? One reason why birds and horses are not unhappy is because they are not trying to impress other birds and horses.”
~Dale Carnegie

Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.

“Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.”
~Dale Carnegie

“Your life is the fruit of your own doing. You have no one to blame but yourself.”
~Joseph Campbell

“Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won. It exists, it is real, it is possible, it is yours.”
~Ayn Rand

inspirational quotes for addicts

“No one’s happiness but my own is in my power to achieve or to destroy.”
~Ayn Rand

“Happiness is that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one’s values.”
~Ayn Rand

“Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead.”
~Louisa May Alcott

“Every habit he’s ever had is still there in his body, lying dormant like flowers in the desert. Given the right conditions, all his old addictions would burst into full and luxuriant bloom.”
~Margaret Atwood

“What comes out of you when you are squeezed is what is inside of you.”
~Dr. Wayne Dyer

“Meaning doesn’t lie in things. Meaning lies in us. When we attach value to things that aren’t love – the money, the car, the house, the prestige – we are loving things that can’t love us back. We are searching for meaning in the meaningless. Money, of itself, means nothing. Material things, of themselves, mean nothing. It’s not that they’re bad. It’s that they’re nothing.”
~Marianne Williamson

“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.”
~Brian Tracy

“Addiction begins with the hope that something ‘out there’ can instantly fill up the emptiness inside.”
~Jean Kilbourne

“Here I am trying to live, or rather, I am trying to teach the death within me how to live.”
~Jean Cocteau

“When you can stop you don’t want to, and when you want to stop, you can’t …”
~Luke Davies

“You’ve recognised a fundamental feature of an addict’s life. Maintaining your habit is so important you’ve no real interest in anything else.”
~Marian Keyes

“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.”
~Henry David Thoreau

“I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor.”
~Henry David Thoreau

“This world is but canvas to our imaginations.”
~Henry David Thoreau

“But I will say that the drugs are much more ferocious then they used to be. There are people wrecking their lives with addiction, which seems much more severe.”
~Armistead Maupin

“Facing it, always facing it, that’s the way to get through. Face it.”
~Joseph Conrad

“Man is what he believes.”
~Anton Chekhov

“You become what you behold.”
~William Blake

“To do anything in this world worth doing, we must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger; but jump in, and scramble through as well as we can.”
~Sydney Smith

“Continuous effort, not strength or intelligence, is the key to unlocking our potential.”
~Liane Cordes

“Why not go out on a limb? Isn’t that where the fruit is?”
~Frank Scully

“The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make heaven of Hell, and a hell of Heaven.”
~John Milton

“Good people are good because they’ve come to wisdom through failure. We get very little wisdom from success, you know… One who doesn’t try cannot fail and become wise.”
~William Saroyan

Addiction Quotes by Historical Figures

“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it”
~Thomas Jefferson

“No-one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
~Eleanor Roosevelt

“Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.”
~Theodore Roosevelt

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Mahatma Gandhi quote on habits“We cannot, in a moment, get rid of habits of a lifetime.”
~Mahatma Gandhi

“As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world… as in being able to remake ourselves.”
~Mahatma Gandhi

“If I accept you as you are, I will make you worse; however if I treat you as though you are what you are capable of becoming, I help you become that.”
~Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

“The superior man is distressed by the limitations of his ability; he is not distressed by the fact that men do not recognize the ability that he has.”

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
~Winston Churchill

“Ability has nothing to do with opportunity.”
~Napoleon Bonaparte

“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to success is more important than any other one thing.”
~Abraham Lincoln

“Determine that the thing can and shall be done, and then we shall find the way.”
~Abraham Lincoln

“I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live up to what light I have.”
~Abraham Lincoln

“Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.”
~Henry Ford

“As a rule, men worry more about what they can’t see than about what they can.”
~Julius Caesar

“Great works are performed, not by strength, but perseverance.”
~Samuel Johnson

“A man who dares to waste one hour of life has not discovered the value of life.”
~Charles Darwin

“You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.”
~Margaret Thatcher

“I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble.”
~Helen Keller

“Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the face.”
~Helen Keller

“Face your deficiencies and acknowledge them; but do not let them master you. Let them teach you patience, sweetness, insight.”
~Helen Keller

“Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved.”
~Helen Keller

“How lovely to think that no one need wait a moment, we can start now, start slowly changing the world! How lovely that everyone, great and small, can make their contribution toward introducing justice straightaway… And you can always, always give something, even if it is only kindness!”
~Anne Frank

“If at first an idea isn’t absurd there is no hope for it.”
~Albert Einstein

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.”
~Albert Einstein

“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
~Albert Einstein

“A man’s true state of power and riches is to be in himself.”
~Henry Ward Beecher

Addiction Quotes by Philosophers

“Truth always rests with the minority, and the minority is always stronger than the majority, because the minority is generally formed by those who really have an opinion, while the strength of a majority is illusory, formed by the gangs who have no opinion—and who, therefore, in the next instant (when it is evident that the minority is the stronger) assume its opinion … while Truth again reverts to a new minority.”
~Soren Kierkegaard

“The rung of a ladder was never meant to rest upon, but only to hold a man’s foot long enough to enable him to put the other somewhat higher.”
~Thomas Huxley

“Bad times, hard times – this is what people keep saying; but let us live well, and times shall be good. We are the times: Such as we are, such are the times.”
~St. Augustine

“We know truth, not only by reason, but also by the heart.”
~Blaise Pascal

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you have was once among the things only hoped for.”

“Natural ability without education has more often raised a man to glory and virtue than education without natural ability.”

“The proof of a well-trained mind is that it rejoices in which is good and grieves at the opposite.”

“Knowledge itself is power.”
~Francis Bacon

“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.”
~Sun Tzu

“The greatest revolution of our generation is the discovery that human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.”
~William James

“Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol, morphine or idealism.”
~C.G. Jung

Addiction Quotes by Religious Figures

“Convictions are the mainsprings of action, the driving powers of life. What a man lives are his convictions.”
~Francis C. Kelley

“Do not think that what your thoughts dwell on does not matter. Your thoughts are making you.”
~Bishop Steere

“No horse gets anywhere until he is harnessed. No stream or gas ever drives anything until it is confined. No Niagara ever turned light and power until it is tunneled. No life ever grows great until it is focused, dedicated, disciplined.”
~Harry Emerson Fosdick

“Don’t let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was.”
~Richard L. Evans

“Expect the dawn of a new beginning in the dark nights of life.”
~Lloyd John Ogilvie

“Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections, but instantly set about remedying them – every day begin the task anew.”
~Saint Francis De Sales

Addiction Quotes by Unknown Authors

“Champions in any field have made a habit of doing what others find boring or uncomfortable”
~Author Unknown

“Do not wait for your ship to come in – swim out to it”
~Author Unknown

“When everything seems like an uphill struggle, just think of the view from the top”
~Author Unknown

“Your altitude is determined by your attitude”
~Author Unknown

“No individual raindrop considers itself responsible for the flood.”
~Author Unknown

Miscellaneous Recovery Quotes

“A hero is one who knows how to hang on one minute longer.”
~Norwegian Proverb

“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
~Sir John Lubbock

“When you come to a roadblock, take a detour.”
~Mary Kay Ash

“Drugs are merely the most obvious form of addiction in our society. Drug addiction is one of the things that undermines traditional values.”
~Christopher Lasch

“Each of us is great insofar as we perceive and act on the infinite possibilities which lie undiscovered and unrecognized about us.”
~James Harvey Robinson

“Every day, in every way, I am getting better and better.”
~Emile Coue

“There are two things to aim at in life: first to get what you want; and after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second.”
~Logan Pearsall Smith

“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.”
~Lou Holtz

“Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal. The winner is he who gives himself to his work, body and soul.”
~Charles Buxton

“For all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been’.”
~John Greenleaf Whittier

“There’s only us, there’s only this, forget regret, or life is yours to miss. No other road, no other way, no day but today.”
~Jonathan Larson

“Ideals are like stars; you will not succeed in touching them with your hands, but like the seafaring man on the desert of waters, you choose them as your guides, and following them, you reach your destiny.”
~Carl Schurz

“If a man does his best, what else is there?”
~General George S. Patton

“Never frown because you never know who might be falling in love with your smile.”
~Justine Milton

“Don’t spend your precious time asking ‘Why isn’t the world a better place?’ It will only be time wasted. The question to ask is ‘How can I make it better?’ To that there is an answer.”
~Leo F. Buscaglia

“No man or woman is uniformly successful… we must all expect a rather high percentage of failure in the things we attempt.”
~Barnaby Keeney