Coping Quotes (Powerful Thoughts on Coping with Life’s Difficulties)

Learning to cope is a lifelong journey. Finding what works best for you during sad, stressful or upsetting situations is important. We know that hobbies, activities and pastimes are an important piece of the coping process for many people.

Explore the following coping skill quotes from thinkers, speakers and authors for more perspective on coping mechanisms for life.

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“I fix myself, even when it causes great pain to do so, because I know that I cannot fix the way the world sees me.”

Tressie McMillan Cottom, Thick: And Other Essays

“When you wake up today to realize that the problem is still there, do not go back to sleep and do not cry. Take a warm bath and start planning for the unknown.”

Mitta Xinindlu

“Finding healthy coping mechanisms are as essential as breathing fresh air. Find what works for you. Do it with zest and fervor unapologetically”

Renee A. Lee

“But for years, my best coping strategy has been work. I have assumed so many responsibilities and said yes to so many things. Working hard creates my own gravity. The more I work, the more I am on terra firma.”

David Chang, Eat a Peach
photo: David Chang

“Artistic expression, even when it’s unpleasant, can be a healthy way of coping with feelings.” – Sue Klebold, A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy

Sue Klebold, A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy

“I have learned to accept the duality of being bitter and at peace; ignorant and enlightened… while still laying a foundation of hope for the possibility that I can still realize my personal dreams and ambitions, even if not in the exact ways I had expected.”

Michael Bihovsky

“Open your umbrella of creativity when glaring heat of adversity hits you unaware.”

Angelica Hopes, If I Could Tell You

“It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly my darling…”

Aldous Huxley, Island
photo: Aldus Huxley

“If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?”

T.S. Eliot

“Work, love, courage and hope, make me good and help me cope!”

Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

“The only way to cope with something deadly serious is to try to treat it a little lightly.”

Madeleine L’Engle, A Wrinkle in Time: With Related Readings

“Facing it, always facing it, that’s the way to get through. Face it.”

Joseph Conrad

“It’s funny: I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then when I grew up I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools – friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty – and said ‘do the best you can with these, they will have to do’. And mostly, against all odds, they do.”

Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith

“You never really know what’s coming. A small wave, or maybe a big one. All you can really do is hope that when it comes, you can surf over it, instead of drown in its monstrosity.”

Alysha Speer

“Something wonderful begins to happen with the simple realization that life, like an automobile, is driven from the inside out, not the other way around. As you focus more on becoming more peaceful with where you are, rather than focusing on where you would rather be, you begin to find peace right now, in the present. Then, as you move around, try new things, and meet new people, you carry that sense of inner peace with you. It’s absolutely true that, “Wherever you go, there you are.”

Richard Carlson, Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff … and It’s All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things From Taking Over Your Life

“Life is not what it’s supposed to be. It’s what it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.”

Aleatha Romig, Consequences

“Sometimes you can learn, even from a bad experience. By coping you become stronger. The pain does not go away, but it becomes manageable.”

Somaly Mam, The Road of Lost Innocence: The True Story of a Cambodian Heroine
photo: Somaly Mam

“Peace of mind is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it.”

Scott Hawkins, The Library at Mount Char

“Life is not the way it’s supposed to be, it’s the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference”

Virginia Satir

“I used to believe that the experiences life throws at us shape us. Now I think that it’s the way we cope with what life throws our way that shapes us.”

Layla Hagen, Withering Hope

“…You need to place one foot in what you have mastered and understood and the other in what you are currently exploring and mastering. Then you have positioned yourself where the terror of existence is under control and you are secure, but where you are also alert and engaged. That is where there is something new to master and some way that you can be improved. That is where meaning is to be found.”

Jordan B. Peterson, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos

“Success in life is not how well we execute Plan A; it’s how smoothly we cope with Plan B.”

Sarah Ban Breathnach

“Close your eyes, real tight, and then count to three hundred. That’s all you have to do. You just count to three hundred, and when you open your eyes, five minutes will have passed. And even if it hurts or things are shitty or you don’t know what to do, you just made it through five whole minutes. And when it feels like you can’t go on, you just close your eyes and do it again. That’s all you need. Just five minutes at a time.”

Emma Mills, First & Then

“Problems are not the problem: coping is the problem.”

Virginia Satir

“There is no substitute for persistence. The person who makes persistence his watch-word, discovers that “Old Man Failure” finally becomes tired, and makes his departure. Failure cannot cope with persistence.”

Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich

“…all cynicism masks a failure to cope.”

John Fowles, The Magus

“What matters is not how well you can avoid trouble, but how you cope with trouble when it comes.”

Paul Auster, The Book of Illusions

“Our attitude towards suffering becomes very important because it can affect how we cope with suffering when it arises.”

Dalai Lama XIV, The Art of Happiness
photo: Dalai Lama XIV

“Once an experience is fully in awareness, fully accepted, then it can be coped with effectively, like any other clear reality.”

Carl R. Rogers, On Becoming a Person: A Therapist’s View of Psychotherapy

“The true test of life isn’t how you cope when everything is going in your favour; it’s how you deal with things that could destroy you, if you let them.”

Holly Bourne, Soulmates

“The acknowledgement of a single possibility can change everything.”

Aberjhani, Splendid Literarium

“It’s not a crime to feel sad, down or depressed. Moving through difficult feelings is an essential part of living life authentically. Though society would have us believe that when we are sad, we need to smack a silly smile on our face and pretend everything is okay. Problems arise when we repress, deny or bury these feelings. We need to know when it’s time to seek help and support, to avoid becoming overwhelmed by these types of emotion. Life is a bittersweet symphony, we need to hear every instrument and listen to every note.”

Jaeda DeWalt

“If a problem has no solution, it may not be a problem, but a fact – not to be solved, but to be coped with over time.”

Shimon Peres

“Growth occurs when we discover how to remain authentically ourselves in the presence of potentially threatening things. Maturity is the possession of coping skills: we can take in our stride things that previously would have knocked us off course. We are less fragile, less easily shocked and hence more capable of engaging with situations as they really are”

Alain de Botton, Art as Therapy

“When problems beat upon you like a raging storm, search for the eye. You might not be able to avoid misfortunes, but you can find the calmest spot within them.”

Richelle E. Goodrich, Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year

“Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.”

George Patton

“A sense of humor helps us to get through the dull times, cope with the difficult times, enjoy the good times and manage the scary times.”

Steve Goodier

“In a world of stressful lack of control, an amazing source of control we all have is the ability to make the world a better place, one act at a time.”

Robert M. Sapolsky, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers: The Acclaimed Guide to Stress, Stress-Related Diseases, and Coping

Thank you for reading this unique collection of coping skill quotes. Check out our article 10 Hobbies to Cope with Stress & Anxiety here for more coping skill hobbies…