Since he started playing football at seven years old, Inky Johnson dreamed of reaching the NFL. In his sophomore season at the University of Tennessee, that dream was close to coming true – he was projected as a top-30 draft pick.
But in an early-season game against Air Force, Johnson suffered a life-threatening injury. It permanently paralyzed his right arm.
“They put 350 staples in my body and bandaged me from my neck to my knees…they told me to go home. ‘Something terrible happened to you, go home’.”
But Johnson didn’t give up. Instead, he set his sights on a new path.
He embraced what happened to him and started sharing his story of perseverance with others. Today, he’s one of the most popular motivational speakers in the world – inspiring millions with his speeches across the globe.
Here is our collection of the best Inky Johnson quotes ever – sourced from YouTube videos, podcast interviews, and media appearances throughout his career.
The Best Quotes from Inky Johnson
1.) “Watch your thoughts, they become your words. Watch your words, they become your actions. Watch your actions, they produce your future.” – Inky Johnson
2.) “Everybody goes to the same weight room, but everybody doesn’t come out the same way.” – Inky Johnson
3.) “The thing I love about sports and the thing I love about life: whatever you want, you’ve gotta be willing to accept whatever comes with it.” – Inky Johnson
4.) “Character supersedes talent every day of the week.” – Inky Johnson
5.) “If you ain’t got more heart than me if you ain’t been working harder than me if you ain’t sacrificed more than me, I’m gonna destroy you. And I’m not retreating.” – Inky Johnson
6.) “The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender.” – Inky Johnson
7.) “Embrace the process, trust the process, but most importantly you’ve gotta respect the process.” – Inky Johnson
8.) “Never forget why you do what you do…People don’t burn out because of what they do, people burn out because life makes them forget why they do it.” – Inky Johnson
9.) “I can no longer play the game of football, but let me extract that dedication and commitment from the game…my arm and my hand are paralyzed but my dedication isn’t, my purpose isn’t.” – Inky Johnson
10.) “Can you be committed to the process of what you’re doing without being emotionally attached to the results of what you’re doing?” – Inky Johnson
11.) “The ability to learn is a gift, even when pain is your teacher.” – Inky Johnson
12.) “My arm and my hand got paralyzed, but my heart didn’t. They saved my life Saturday, I was back in class Tuesday. I was back at practice with my teammates Wednesday.” – Inky Johnson
13.) “I just believe that I’m supposed to give everybody that’s connected to me the best version of me.” – Inky Johnson
14.) “I love the process. I love the thought of working for what I want. And I firmly believe that you’re never supposed to wish for it more than you’re willing to work for it.” – Inky Johnson
15.) “A good person does the right thing even when it’s not the easy thing.” – Inky Johnson
16.) “It wasn’t about the outcome for me. Whether I made it to the NFL or not was inconsequential in God’s plan for my life. But I was going to fall in love with that process because I understood that by falling in love with that process, it was going to turn me into a machine.” – Inky Johnson
17.) “A lot of people need things to get motivated…I don’t need anything but breath in my body and life.” – Inky Johnson
18.) “The thing we have to understand about everything that we’re a part of, first and foremost, it’s a blessing by God. And when it’s a blessing, you can’t help but give everything you got to it.” – Inky Johnson
19.) “Anybody that has direct with people on a daily basis, that is an opportunity to change someone’s life.” – Inky Johnson
20.) “I don’t know about you, but every single day I’m blessed to be above ground. I’m gonna make my time count and I’m gonna give something valuable back to life.” – Inky Johnson
21.) “I will never let a circumstance or situation define my life.” – Inky Johnson
22.) “One of the most underrated blessings is leaving your house and coming back home every single day.” – Inky Johnson
23.) “Sometimes things are gonna be so tough – stop fighting it, stop trying to understand it, just survive it. Take all that energy and just survive it.” – Inky Johnson
24.) “The standard is the standard. We compete, we fight, we scrap, and we live to fight another day. We don’t retreat against nobody.” – Inky Johnson
25.) “Perspective drives performance every day of the week. How you view what you do will always affect how you do what you do.” – Inky Johnson
Is there an Inky Johnson quote we missed? Let us know on Twitter.
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