42 Sensational Randy Pausch Quotes

Randy Pausch was an American professor of Computer Science and Human Computer Interaction. As the creator of the Alice software project and his number one bestselling book, Pausch was taken in 2008 after losing his battle with pancreatic cancer. Here is a look at some of the best known Randy Pausch quotes.

“A good apology is like antibiotic, a bad apology is like rubbing salt in the wound.”

“A lot of people want a shortcut. I find the best shortcut is the long way, which is basically two words: work hard.”

“All my adult life I’ve felt drawn to ask long-married couples how they were able to stay together. All of them said the same thing:”We worked hard at it.”

“Be good at something. It makes you valuable. Have something to bring to the table, because that will make you more welcome.”

“Believe nothing a man tells you and everything he shows you”….(Taken from a farewell video from a dying father to his infant daughter on dating)”

“Complaining does not work as a strategy. We all have finite time and energy. Any time we spend whining is unlikely to help us achieve our goals. And it won’t make us happier.”


“Don’t complain; just work harder.”

“Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted. And experience is often the most valuable thing you have to offer.”

“Find the best in everybody. Just keep waiting no matter how long it takes. No one is all evil. Everybody has a good side, just keep waiting, it will come out.”

“Find the best in everybody. Wait long enough, and people will surprise and impress you. It might even take years, but people will show you their good side. Just keep waiting.”

“Follow your passions, believe in karma, and you won’t have to chase your dreams, they will come to you.”

“Give yourself permission to dream. Fuel your kids’ dreams too. Once in a while, that might even mean letting them stay up past their bedtimes.”

“Go out and do for others what somebody did for you.”

“I know you’re smart. But everyone here is smart. Smart isn’t enough. The kind of people I want on my research team are those who will help everyone feel happy to be here.”

“I’ve never understood pity and self-pity as an emotion. We have a finite amount of time. Whether short or long, it doesn’t matter. Life is to be lived.”

“If I only had three words of advice, they would be, Tell the Truth. If got three more words, I’d add, all the time.”

“If I work hard enough, there will be things I can do tomorrow that I can’t do today.”

“Its important to have specific dreams. Dream Big. Dream without fear.”

“It’s not about how to achieve your dreams, it’s about how to lead your life, … If you lead your life the right way, the karma will take care of itself, the dreams will come to you.”

“It’s not how hard you hit. It’s how hard you get hit…and keep moving forward.”

“Look, I’m going to find a way to be happy, and I’d really love to be happy with you, but if I can’t be happy with you, then I’ll find a way to be happy without you.”

“Luck is where preparation meets opportunity.”

“No matter how bad things are, you can always make things worse.”

“One thing that makes it possible to be an optimist is if you have a contingency plan for when all hell breaks loose.”

“People are more important than things.”

“Showing gratitude is one of the simplest yet most powerful things humans can do for each other.”

“The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.”

“The key question to keep asking is, Are you spending your time on the right things? Because time is all you have.”

“The person who failed often knows how to avoid future failures. The person who knows only success can be more oblivious to all the pitfalls.”

“The questions are always more important than the answers.”

“There’s a lot of talk these days about giving children self-esteem. It’s not something you can give; it’s something they have to build.”

“Time is all you have and you may find one day that you have less than you think.”

“Too many people go through life complaining about their problems. I’ve always believed that if you took one tenth the enrgy you put into complaining and applied it to solving the problem, you’d be surprised by how well things can work out.”

“Wait long enough and people will surprise and impress. When you’re pissed off at someone and you’re angry at them, you just haven’t given them enough time.”

“We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.”

“When it comes to men who are romantically interested in you, it’s really simple. Just ignore everything they say and only pay attention to what they do.”

“When there’s an elephant in the room introduce him.”

“When we’re connected to others, we become better people.”

“When you’re screwing up and nobody says anything to you anymore, that means they’ve given up on you.”

“You can always change you plan, but only if you have one.”

“You give them something they can’t do, they work hard until they find they can do it, and you just keep repeating the process.”

“You may not want to hear it, but your critics are often the ones telling you they still love you and care about you, and want to make you better.”

Randy Pausch appears in this ABC Special Interview on his book, ‘The Last Lecture.’