C-Suite Advisory

30 Famous Inspirational Quotes, Sayings, And Proverbs In German With Translations

In the spirit of self motivation, here are 30 of the best inspirational quotes, sayings, and proverbs in German (with translations) to motivate you:

1. Bald reif hält nicht steif
English equivalent:
– Early ripe, early rotten
– Precocious talent or premature succes is often shortlived.

2. Das Glück hilft dem Kühnen.
Translation: Luck helps the audacious.
English equivalent:
– Those who act boldly or courageously are most likely to succeed.
– Fortune favours the bold.

3. Unter den Blinden ist der Einäugige König.
English equivalent:
– Among the blind, the one-eyed is king.
– People of only limited capability can succeed when surrounded by those who are even less able than themselves.

4. Wer Feuer bedarf, sucht es in der Asche.
English equivalent:
– Let him that is cold blow the coals.
– My definition of success is doing what you love. I feel many people do things because they feel they have to, and are hesitant to risk following their passion.

5. Wer zuletzt lacht, lacht am besten.
English equivalent:
– He who laughs last, laughs longest.
– Minor successes or failures along the way are of no significance – the person who is ultimately triumphant is the only real winner.

6. Der Fisch stinkt vom Kopf her.
English equivalent:
– A fish stinks from the head.
– A corrupting influence often spreads from a leader to the rest of the organization group.

7. Die Ratten verlassen das sinkende Schiff.
Translation and English equivalent:
– Rats desert a sinking ship.
– A leader or organization in trouble will quickly be abandoned.

8. Der Fisch stinkt vom Kopf her.
English equivalent:
– A fish stinks from the head.
– A corrupting influence often spreads from a leader to the rest of the organization group.

9. Der Schein trügt.
Translation: Appearances deceive. Meaning: Things are not always as they look like.

10. Geteilte Freude ist doppelte Freude, geteilter Schmerz ist halber Schmerz.
Translation: Shared joy is double joy, shared sorrow is halved sorrow.


11. Gleiche Gemüter suchen sich.
Translation: imilar minds seek each other. Great minds agree.

12. Andere Länder, andere Sitten.
Translation: Other countries, other customs
When in Rome, do as the Romans do.

13. An den Früchten erkennt man den Baum.
English equivalent: The apple does not fall far from the tree.
Meaning: “Children observe daily and — in their behaviour — often follow the example of their parents.”

14. Anfangen ist leicht, beharren eine Kunst.
Translation: To begin is easy, to persist is art.

15. Auch der kleinste Feind ist nicht zu verachten.
Translation: Even the tinyest enemy is not to be despised.
English equivalent: There is no little enemy.

16. Die besten Gedanken kommen allzeit hinterdrein.
Translation: The best thoughts always come second.
Second thoughts are the best.

17. Die Ochsen hinter dem Wagen spannen.
Translation: To tighten the ox behind the cart.
Don’t put the cart before the horse.
“It is important to do things in the right or natural order.”

18. Die beste Verteidigung ist der Angriff.
Translation: Attack is the best form of defense.
“You are more likely to win if you take the initiative and make an attack rather than preparing to defend yourself.”

19. Die besten Schwimmer ertrinken.
Translation: The best swimmers drown.
English equivalent: Good swimmers are often drowned.

20. Der Stärkere hat immer Recht.
Translation: The stronger is always right.


21. Aus den Augen, aus dem Sinn.
Translation: Out of sight, out of mind

22. Man sieht nur das, was man weiß.
Translation: You only see what you know.

23. Tu nur das Rechte in deinen Sachen; Das andre wird sich von selber machen.
Translation: Just do the right thing in your affairs; The rest will take care of itself.

24. Das Leben gehört den Lebenden an, und wer lebt, muss auf Wechsel gefasst sein.
Translation: Life belongs to the living, and those who live must be prepared for change.

25. Besser laufen, als faulen.
Translation: Better to run than to rot.

26. Es ist nichts schrecklicher als eine tätige Unwissenheit.
Translation: There’s nothing worse than ignorance in action.

27. Wer nicht vorwärts geht, der kommt zurücke.
Translation: If you’re not going forward, you’re going backward.

28. Alles zu seiner Zeit.
English equivalent: “all in good time”, or idiomatically “patience is a virtue”

29. Besser allein als in schlechter Gesellschaft.
Translation: It is better to be alone than to be in bad company.

30. Beiß nicht in die Hand, die dich füttert.
Translation: Do not bite into the hand that feeds you.

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Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj
Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj is a media and technology executive, macro-economist, strategic thinker, chair, and chief executive officer of the CEOWORLD magazine, one of the world’s most influential and recognized global news publications. Under Dr. Amarendra's leadership, CEOWORLD magazine has become the world's most iconic news organization, whose rigorous reporting and unsurpassed storytelling connect with millions of business leaders daily. Additionally, he serves as the chair and founding member of the CEOWORLD magazine’s Inclusion Advisory Board.

In his current role, he counsels and collaborates with c-suite executives of large multinational corporations, helping them drive change in their companies to improve their competitiveness. Dr. Amarendra has extensive experience in serving on numerous boards. He leads and supports a globally dispersed team of columnists, correspondents, editors, journalists, reporters, researchers, and industry analysts.

He received his Ph.D. in Finance and Banking from the European Global School, Paris, France. He also received his Doctoral Degree in Chartered Accountancy from the European International University Paris, France, and a Doctorate in Business Administration from Kyiv National University of Technologies and Design (KNUTD), Ukraine. He earned his Master of Business Administration degree in Finance and his master’s degree in Chartered Accountancy (CA) from European Global School Paris. Dr. Amarendra also holds a Master of Business Administration degree in International Relations and Affairs from the American University of Athens, Alabama, United States.

As CEO, he transformed the CEOWORLD magazine into a highly efficient, digital-first, profitable enterprise. Today, CEOWORLD magazine is a standard bearer for modern responsible journalism. Dr. Amarendra retains a strong desire to continuously improve his skills and abilities and believes that the first step to being a true leader is to inspire others to lead with you.

Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj is the CHAIR, CEO, AND EDITORIAL DIRECTOR of the CEOWORLD magazine. Connect with him through LinkedIn.