This article was written by Georgina Lawton

January: the month of good intentions, new beginnings and reinventions, all of which, of course, extends to the job search. If you’ve been twiddling your thumbs since graduation or you’re tearing your hair out trying to break into your dream industry, you may need a little more motivation to get you moving towards employment in the New Year.

Luckily we’ve compiled *the* definitive list of inspiring quotes and song lyrics from cool people to help reprogram your mind and sort out your psyche so you can beat the unemployment blues once and for all! See? January doesn’t have to be so bleak after all.

Steve Jobs

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

Who: Steve Jobs was the CEO of Apple Inc, and is thought to have donated around $50 million to HIV, AIDS and cancer charities in his lifetime before dying of pancreatic cancer at age 56 in 2011. He kept all his philanthropic endeavours a secret while alive.

Inspiration rating: 8/10

Albert Einstein

“You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.”

Who: Einstein was a German physicist and winner of the 1921 Nobel Peace Prize for his work in theoretical physics. Widely considered the greatest scientist who ever lived, it’s no wonder ‘Einstein’ is now synonymous with ‘genius’.

Inspiration rating: 10/10

Hilary Swank

“I don’t think people should have boundaries put on them, by themselves or society or another gender, because it’s our birth-right to experience life in whatever way we feel best suits us.”

Who: American actress Hilary Swank is no stranger to hard work having grown up in a trailer park. She went onto accept less than $75 a day to work on the film ‘Boys Don’t Cry’. She also lived as a man for a month and dropped her body fat to seven percent to prep for the role, and later won an Oscar. Dedication to the craft, indeed.

Inspiration rating: 6/10

Ed Sheeran

“Never went to Uni, people see right through me but I’m not a fool, see I’m never gonna do one, gonna live past 22, done everything I need to except get a 2:1”

Who: From his song ‘Homeless’, this quote from Ed was in reference the grafting he had to do to get his music out there, including sleeping on the streets and shunning a University education.

Inspiration rating: 7/10

Sheryl Sandberg

“If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat.”

Who: Harvard-educated Sandberg is changing the way the face of the internet, and inspiring women across the world to forge careers in tech. Having worked in the US treasury, as VP of Google and as the Chief Operator for Facebook, Sandberg is now a billionaire. Wow.

Inspiration rating: 9/10


“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom”

Who: Ancient Greek philosopher and scientist Aristotle certainly spoke some sense. He was born around 384 B.C. and was tutored by Plato and taught Alexander the Great.

Inspiration rating: 10/10


“I don’t like to gamble, but if there’s one thing I’m willing to bet on it’s myself”

Who: The multi-talented Grammy-award-winning Queen Bey needs no introduction. If you need firing up for the job hunt, just listen to ‘I am Sasha Fierce’ on repeat and all will be right with the world.

Inspiration rating: 7/10

Malala Yousafzai

“Let us make our future now, and let us make our dreams tomorrow’s reality”

Who: Pakistani blogger Malala started writing about women’s rights in her country five years ago and today is a global activist for women’s rights and education in the middle east. After surviving a Taliban gunshot wound in 2012, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014

Inspiration rating: 10/10

If you liked that, you may like…

“I got the idea in the shower!”, and other crazy invention stories

Day of the Girl: successful women’s setbacks

Mother’s Day: Why we’re inspired by our mums