Quotes about Setbacks – We all experience them and sometimes they really hurt, so let’s look at how we can grow from them.

[I want to just mention here that I am using some quotes found on Pinterest. I have just written them and their authors as I saw them. But I have not researched each quote and verified the author, so please forgive me if they are incorrect. This is the search I used here.]

Quotes about setbacks 1-5

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

I thought I should start with this most obvious one. It’s a classic one of the quotes about setbacks. It highlights that good things can come from difficulties.

You will fall down, just don’t stay down.

This quote highlights the truth, we will fall down. We will experience setbacks. But imagine a runner in a race who trips over. We don’t even conceive the notion that they would just stay there. It’s an automatic reaction, they jump straight back up.

Wouldn’t it be great if we were like this in life, jumping straight back up whenever something doesn’t work out.

The strongest oak of the forest is not the one that is protected from the storm and hidden from the sun. It’s the one that stands in the open where it is compelled to struggle for its existence against the winds and rains and the scorching sun.

Napoleon Hill

This one spoke to me and I don’t think it needs much explanation.

One setback is one setback. It is not the end of the world.

Jillian Michaels

This one is really good to put things into perspective. We can take things to heart too much and this shows us to just take it as it is.

A speech bubble on grid paper. In the bubble it says “success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little further down the road”. [Jack Hyles] Part of an article - 15 quotes about setbacks that will make you smile.

Success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little further down the road.

Jack Hyles

This helps us to realize the need to keep going, it’s just further down the same road. I love this idea.

Quotes about setbacks 6-10

Straight roads do not make skillful drivers.

Paulo Coelho

This helps us to see the real value in difficulties. Sometimes they give us greater skills and help us much more than we realize.

Giving up on your goal because of one setback is like slashing your other three tires because you got a flat.

This one really shows the stupidity of giving up after one setback. We are not meant to sabotage ourselves even further.

Mistakes are proof that you’re trying.

This is one of the great quotes about setbacks. You are trying, so just keep it up, keep trying!! Trying your best is your super power.

Finding all the wrong ways to do something will eventually with 100% certainty lead me to find the right way.


This is my own little saying. This is my usual way to get there…find all the wrong ways first. But if I just keep going and exhaust all the wrong options I know I can get there.

If you stumble, make it part of the dance


Get creative with your setbacks. That’s why I love these quotes about setbacks, they provide inspiration. This quote did that for me. Why not get a bit creative and make it part of the dance.

Quotes about setbacks 11-15

Failure is not the opposite of success, it is part of success

This gives a really good perspective..recognition that setbacks are a necessary part of a journey. It’s important to see it like this so as not to beat ourselves us.

We are much more useful to the world in forgiving ourselves than hating ourselves.


We have so much to offer. It would be a tragedy if because of a setback we decide our worth is based on that and we stop offering. Rather we keep our usefulness if we forgive ourselves and move on. Forgiveness is very powerful with setbacks.

The key of persistence opens all doors closed by resistance.

John Di Lemme

This one is a simple profound truth, persistence and not giving up leads to achievements.

Picture of a hand holding a notepad in front of a forest. On the notepad it reads “difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations”. Part of an article - 15 quotes about setbacks that will make you smile.

Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations.

This one made me think of all the times we have driven down crazy dirt paths to get to that untouched beauty spot. It’s so true that sometimes we need to focus on the fact that the destination will be worth the difficulties.

Progress is not a straight line.

And that makes the last of the quotes about setbacks. Remember that for every three steps forward, expect a couple backwards too.


I really hope these setbacks quotes made you smile. They were helpful for me too as I think these are the kind of reminders we need on a regular basis. Sometimes I do a monthly focus, and one time it was based on peace, and I wrote about it with lots of quotes. You might want to take a look – Monthly focus – peace.