27 Idioms for Motivation: Fueling Your Drive


Motivation is the driving force behind achieving our goals and making our dreams come true. We all need a little extra push sometimes, and that’s where idioms come in handy. Idioms are phrases that convey a deeper meaning or offer words of encouragement.

Let’s dive in and discover the power of these motivational expressions!

idioms for motivation

What is an idiom for motivation?

Idioms are expressions that often don’t have a literal interpretation but instead offer a figurative or symbolic message.

When it comes to motivation, idioms are used to encourage, uplift, and inspire individuals to pursue their goals and dreams.


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Created by Dr. Julia Rossi

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1 / 20

What is a simile?

2 / 20

Identify the simile in the following sentence: “She swims like a fish.”

3 / 20

What is a metaphor?

4 / 20

Which of the following is a metaphor?

5 / 20

What is an idiom?

6 / 20

What does the idiom “break the ice” mean?

7 / 20

What is an adjective?

8 / 20

Choose the adjective in the following sentence: “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”

9 / 20

What is an abbreviation?

10 / 20

What does the abbreviation “e.g.” stand for?

11 / 20

What is a verb?

12 / 20

Identify the verb in the following sentence: “The cat sleeps on the sofa.”

13 / 20

“Out of the frying pan into the fire” is an example of:

14 / 20

Which of the following is an adjective?

15 / 20

The abbreviation “NASA” stands for:

16 / 20

Choose the metaphor in the following sentence: “Time is a thief.”

17 / 20

What does the idiom “hit the books” mean?

18 / 20

Which of the following sentences contains a simile?

19 / 20

“LOL” is an abbreviation for:

20 / 20

Identify the verb in this sentence: “They whispered secrets into the night.”

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Below, we’ll explore a list of motivational idioms, along with their meanings and real-life examples.

IdiomMeaningExample Sentence
Keep your eye on the prizeStay focused on your ultimate goal or objectiveDespite facing challenges along the way, she always kept her eye on the prize of becoming a successful entrepreneur.
Go the extra milePut in additional effort beyond what is expectedTo excel in her studies, she was willing to go the extra mile, studying late into the night and seeking additional resources.
Chase your dreamsPursue your aspirations and ambitions with determinationHe left his stable job to chase his dreams of becoming a professional musician, despite the uncertainty.
Reach for the starsSet high and ambitious goals for yourselfHer parents always encouraged her to reach for the stars and never settle for mediocrity.
Seize the dayMake the most of the present moment; take opportunities when they ariseHe decided to seize the day and travel the world while he was still young and free.
Aim highSet your goals and expectations at a high levelThe coach always told his team to aim high and strive for excellence in every game.
Rise and shineWake up early, be enthusiastic, and start your day energeticallyEvery morning, she would rise and shine, ready to face the day’s challenges with a positive attitude.
Break a legWish someone good luck or success, especially before a performance or important eventBefore the audition, her friends told her to break a leg, and she delivered a stellar performance.
Give it your allPut forth your maximum effort and dedicationIn the final minutes of the game, the team decided to give it their all to secure a victory.
Stay the courseRemain committed to your chosen path or plan despite obstaclesDespite facing setbacks, she resolved to stay the course and complete her college degree.
Shoot for the moonSet extremely ambitious and lofty goalsHis mentor encouraged him to shoot for the moon in his career aspirations, believing that nothing was impossible.
Hang in thereKeep going and stay resilient in the face of challenges or difficultiesDuring tough times, her friends would tell her to hang in there and keep believing in herself.
Keep your chin upMaintain a positive attitude and not let setbacks or disappointments bring you downAfter a tough loss, her coach told her to keep her chin up and learn from the experience.
Push the envelopeGo beyond the usual limits or boundaries to achieve something extraordinaryThe team aimed to push the envelope in technology innovation, creating groundbreaking products.
Put your best foot forwardMake a strong effort and present yourself in the best possible wayWhen attending the job interview, she made sure to put her best foot forward by dressing professionally and preparing well.
Never say neverDon’t give up hope, even when something seems impossible or unlikelyDespite the challenges, she never said never and eventually achieved her lifelong dream of traveling the world.
Find the silver liningFocus on the positive aspects of a situation, even in difficult timesDuring the tough year, she learned to find the silver lining by spending more time with her family.
Believe in yourselfHave confidence in your abilities and trust that you can accomplish your goalsHer parents always taught her to believe in herself and her potential to succeed.
Stay positiveMaintain an optimistic outlook and attitudeDespite the challenges, she made an effort to stay positive and see the bright side of every situation.
Don’t look backKeep moving forward and not dwell on past mistakes or regretsAfter making the decision to change careers, she resolved not to look back and focus on her new path.
Turn lemons into lemonadeTransform a negative or challenging situation into something positive or advantageousDespite facing adversity, she always managed to turn lemons into lemonade by finding opportunities in the difficulties.
Walk the talkBack up your words with actions; live by your principles and commitmentsAs a leader, he always made sure to walk the talk and set a good example for his team.
Make it happenTake initiative and ensure that your goals and plans become a realityDespite the obstacles, they were determined to make it happen and launch their own business.
Follow your heartListen to your inner feelings and instincts when making decisionsWhen choosing a career, she decided to follow her heart and pursue her passion for art.
The sky’s the limitThere are no fixed boundaries to what you can achieve; your potential is limitlessHer parents always told her that the sky’s the limit and that she could achieve anything she set her mind to.
Keep the faithMaintain belief and trust in yourself, your goals, or your convictions, especially during challenging timesEven in the face of setbacks, she kept the faith and continued working towards her dreams.
Never give upPersist and continue working towards your goals, regardless of obstacles or failuresThe key to success is to never give up, no matter how difficult the journey may be.

Motivation is like a powerful engine, propelling us forward on the journey to our goals and dreams. For more comparisons to describe motivation, you can click on this link: Similes for motivation. And for a variety of metaphors related to motivation, you can explore this link: Metaphors for motivation.

Idioms for Motivation

1. Keep your eye on the prize.

Meaning: Stay focused on your ultimate goal or objective.

In a Sentence: Despite facing challenges along the way, she always kept her eye on the prize of becoming a successful entrepreneur.

2. Go the extra mile.

Meaning: Put in additional effort and work beyond what is expected.

In a Sentence: To excel in her studies, she was willing to go the extra mile, studying late into the night and seeking additional resources.

3. Chase your dreams.

Meaning: Pursue your aspirations and ambitions with determination.

In a Sentence: He left his stable job to chase his dreams of becoming a professional musician, despite the uncertainty.

4. Reach for the stars.

Meaning: Set high and ambitious goals for yourself.

In a Sentence: Her parents always encouraged her to reach for the stars and never settle for mediocrity.

5. Seize the day.

Meaning: Make the most of the present moment; take opportunities when they arise.

In a Sentence: He decided to seize the day and travel the world while he was still young and free.

6. Aim high.

Meaning: Set your goals and expectations at a high level.

In a Sentence: The coach always told his team to aim high and strive for excellence in every game.

7. Rise and shine.

Meaning: Wake up early, be enthusiastic, and start your day energetically.

In a Sentence: Every morning, she would rise and shine, ready to face the day’s challenges with a positive attitude.

8. Break a leg.

Meaning: A way to wish someone good luck or success, especially before a performance or important event.

In a Sentence: Before the audition, her friends told her to break a leg, and she delivered a stellar performance.

9. Give it your all.

Meaning: Put forth your maximum effort and dedication.

In a Sentence: In the final minutes of the game, the team decided to give it their all to secure a victory.

10. Stay the course.

Meaning: Remain committed to your chosen path or plan despite obstacles.

In a Sentence: Despite facing setbacks, she resolved to stay the course and complete her college degree.

11. Shoot for the moon.

Meaning: Set extremely ambitious and lofty goals.

In a Sentence: His mentor encouraged him to shoot for the moon in his career aspirations, believing that nothing was impossible.

12. Hang in there.

Meaning: Keep going and stay resilient in the face of challenges or difficulties.

In a Sentence: During tough times, her friends would tell her to hang in there and keep believing in herself.

13. Keep your chin up.

Meaning: Maintain a positive attitude and not let setbacks or disappointments bring you down.

In a Sentence: After a tough loss, her coach told her to keep her chin up and learn from the experience.

14. Push the envelope.

Meaning: Go beyond the usual limits or boundaries to achieve something extraordinary.

In a Sentence: The team aimed to push the envelope in technology innovation, creating groundbreaking products.

15. Put your best foot forward.

Meaning: Make a strong effort and present yourself in the best possible way.

In a Sentence: When attending the job interview, she made sure to put her best foot forward by dressing professionally and preparing well.

16. Never say never.

Meaning: Don’t give up hope, even when something seems impossible or unlikely.

In a Sentence: Despite the challenges, she never said never and eventually achieved her lifelong dream of traveling the world.

17. Find the silver lining.

Meaning: Focus on the positive aspects of a situation, even in difficult times.

In a Sentence: During the tough year, she learned to find the silver lining by spending more time with her family.

18. Believe in yourself.

Meaning: Have confidence in your abilities and trust that you can accomplish your goals.

In a Sentence: Her parents always taught her to believe in herself and her potential to succeed.

19. Stay positive.

Meaning: Maintain an optimistic outlook and attitude.

In a Sentence: Despite the challenges, she made an effort to stay positive and see the bright side of every situation.

20. Don’t look back.

Meaning: Keep moving forward and not dwell on past mistakes or regrets.

In a Sentence: After making the decision to change careers, she resolved not to look back and focus on her new path.

21. Turn lemons into lemonade.

Meaning: Transform a negative or challenging situation into something positive or advantageous.

In a Sentence: Despite facing adversity, she always managed to turn lemons into lemonade by finding opportunities in the difficulties.

22. Walk the talk.

Meaning: Back up your words with actions; live by your principles and commitments.

In a Sentence: As a leader, he always made sure to walk the talk and set a good example for his team.

23. Make it happen.

Meaning: Take initiative and ensure that your goals and plans become a reality.

In a Sentence: Despite the obstacles, they were determined to make it happen and launch their own business.

24. Follow your heart.

Meaning: Listen to your inner feelings and instincts when making decisions.

In a Sentence: When choosing a career, she decided to follow her heart and pursue her passion for art.

25. The sky’s the limit.

Meaning: There are no fixed boundaries to what you can achieve; your potential is limitless.

In a Sentence: Her parents always told her that the sky’s the limit and that she could achieve anything she set her mind to.

26. Keep the faith.

Meaning: Maintain belief and trust in yourself, your goals, or your convictions, especially during challenging times.

In a Sentence: Even in the face of setbacks, she kept the faith and continued working towards her dreams.

27. Never give up.

Meaning: Persist and continue working towards your goals, regardless of obstacles or failures.

In a Sentence: The key to success is to never give up, no matter how difficult the journey may be.

Quizzes About The Idioms in The Article

Here are 10 quizzes about the idioms for motivation mentioned in the article:

Quiz 1:
Question: What does the idiom “Chase your dreams” mean?

  • a) Run after your nightmares
  • b) Pursue your aspirations and ambitions with determination
  • c) Take a nap and daydream

Quiz 2:
Question: What is the meaning of the idiom “Give it your all”?

  • a) Put in minimal effort
  • b) Put forth your maximum effort and dedication
  • c) Give up easily

Quiz 3:
Question: Which idiom encourages setting high goals?

  • a) Keep your chin up
  • b) Rise and shine
  • c) Aim high

Quiz 4:
Question: What does the expression “Stay the course” mean?

  • a) Abandon your plans
  • b) Remain committed to your chosen path or plan despite obstacles
  • c) Take a detour

Quiz 5:
Question: Which idiom suggests taking advantage of opportunities in the present moment?

  • a) Reach for the stars
  • b) Seize the day
  • c) Keep your eye on the prize

Quiz 6:
Question: What does “Turn lemons into lemonade” mean?

  • a) Make sour lemonade
  • b) Transform a negative or challenging situation into something positive or advantageous
  • c) Avoid lemons at all costs

Quiz 7:
Question: Which idiom means wishing someone good luck?

  • a) Stay positive
  • b) Give it your all
  • c) Break a leg

Quiz 8:
Question: What does “Make it happen” imply?

  • a) Wait for things to happen on their own
  • b) Take initiative and ensure that your goals and plans become a reality
  • c) Let go of your goals

Quiz 9:
Question: Which idiom encourages maintaining confidence in your abilities?

  • a) Find the silver lining
  • b) Follow your heart
  • c) Believe in yourself

Quiz 10:
Question: What is the meaning of “Push the envelope”?

  • a) Stay within the usual limits
  • b) Go beyond the usual limits or boundaries to achieve something extraordinary
  • c) Avoid challenging situations

Answers:

  1. b) Pursue your aspirations and ambitions with determination
  2. b) Put forth your maximum effort and dedication
  3. c) Aim high
  4. b) Remain committed to your chosen path or plan despite obstacles
  5. b) Seize the day
  6. b) Transform a negative or challenging situation into something positive or advantageous
  7. c) Break a leg
  8. b) Take initiative and ensure that your goals and plans become a reality
  9. c) Believe in yourself
  10. b) Go beyond the usual limits or boundaries to achieve something extraordinary

Conclusion

These motivational idioms offer words of encouragement and inspiration to help you stay motivated on your path to success. Whether you’re facing challenges, pursuing your dreams, or working towards your goals, these expressions remind us of the power of determination, positivity, and perseverance.

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