120+ Best Leo Buscaglia Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Felice Leonardo “Leo” Buscaglia, also known as “Dr. Love,” was an American author and motivational speaker, and a professor in the Department of Special Education. Profoundly inspirational Leo Buscaglia quotes will encourage growth in life, make you wiser and broaden your perspective.

Famous Leo Buscaglia Quotes

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. – Leo Buscaglia

The opposite of love is not hate – it’s apathy. It’s not giving a damn. If somebody hates me, they must feel something … or they couldn’t possibly hate. Therefore, there’s some way in which I can get to them. – Leo Buscaglia

The only people who become wealthy by being concerned with the future are insurance companies. – Leo Buscaglia

A wife says to her husband (or vice versa), Do you love me? Of course, he replies. I’ve been married to you for twenty years, haven’t I? How satisfied would we be if we presented someone with a vintage wine and, upon asking his opinion of it, he replied, I’m drinking it, aren’t I? Love still needs expression between those who share it. – Leo Buscaglia

Love is not some complex, mystical abstraction. It is something accessible and human that we learn through our everyday experience, as often at times of failure as in moments of ecstasy. – Leo Buscaglia

To live in love is life’s greatest challenge. It requires more sublety, flexibility, sensitivity, understanding, acceptance, tolerance, knowledge and strength than any other human endeavor. – Leo Buscaglia

Relish love in your old age! Aged love is like aged wine; it becomes more satisfying, more refreshing, more valuable, more appreciated and more intoxicating! – Leo Buscaglia

You can’t imagine the joy I feel when I hear that something I’ve said or done or written has helped others to regain their sense of dignity, to motivate them to develop their unique potential, to encourage them to reach out to others in love. – Leo Buscaglia

Our talents are the gift that God gives to us… What we make of our talents is our gift back to God – Leo Buscaglia

There is nothing wrong with making mistakes and not having all the answers, so long as we are willing to admit this and strive for personal betterment. Those who think they know it all have no way of finding out that they don’t. – Leo Buscaglia

There are many miracles in the world to be celebrated and, for me, garlic is the most deserving. – Leo Buscaglia

As long as you are free, you are free to select and choose alternatives, provided that you are willing to accept the responsibility for being free. And after you’ve tried your alternatives, and they don’t work as you would wish, don’t blame me. Blame your choice. Try another alternative. – Leo Buscaglia

It is the foregiver who is freed in foregiving. – Leo Buscaglia

The only thing of value we can give kids is what we are, not what we have. – Leo Buscaglia

When you love someone you do not love them all the time, in exactly the same way, from moment to moment. It is an impossibility. It is even a lie to pretend to. And yet this is exactly what most of us demand. We have so little faith in the ebb and flow of life, of love, of relationships. We leap at the flow of the tide and resist in terror its ebb. We are afraid it will never return. We insist on permanency, on duration, on continuity; when the only continuity possible, in life as in love, is in growth, in fluidity – in freedom – Leo Buscaglia

Love yourself-accept yourself-forgive yourself-and be good to yourself, because without you the rest of us are without a source of many wonderful things. – Leo Buscaglia

I believe that you control your destiny, that you can be what you want to be. You can also stop and say, ‘No, I won’t do it, I won’t behave his way anymore. I’m lonely and I need people around me, maybe I have to change my methods of behaving,’ and then you do it. – Leo Buscaglia

Change. It has the power to uplift, to heal, to stimulate, surprise, open new doors, bring fresh experience and create excitement in life. Certainly it is worth the risk. – Leo Buscaglia

Only the weak are cruel. Gentleness can only be expected from the strong. – Leo Buscaglia

One does not fall in or out of love. One grows in love. – Leo Buscaglia

It doesn’t matter who you have hurt, if you’ve learned not to hurt again. It doesn’t matter what mistakes you’ve made as long as you don’t make them again. As long as you learn, as long as you’re willing to take your life in your hands, and kiss it and go from there. Then there is growth. There there is life! – Leo Buscaglia

Man seldom questions the fact that ugliness and evil are to be found in the world. But he’s never as ready to accept that life also offers unlimited beauty and potential for joy as well as endless opportunities for pleasure. – Leo Buscaglia

A single rose can be my garden… a single friend, my world. – Leo Buscaglia

God made mud, God made dirt, God made boys so girls could flirt. – Leo Buscaglia

When love is accompanied with deep intimacy, it raises us to the highest level of human experience. In this exalted space, we can surrender our egos, become vulnerable and know levels of joy and well-being unique among life experiences. We attain a glimpse of the rapture that can be ours. Boundaries are blurred, there are no limitations and we rejoice in union. We become one and, at the same time, both. – Leo Buscaglia

I will love you if you are stupid, if you slip and fall on your face, if you do the wrong thing, if you make mistakes, if you behave like a human being — I will love you no matter. – Leo Buscaglia

Love can never grow old. Looks may lose their brown and gold. Cheeks may fade and hollow grow. But the hearts that love will know, never winter’s frost and chill, summer’s warmth is in them still. – Leo Buscaglia

I am often accused of being childish. I prefer to interpret that as child-like. I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things. I tend to exaggerate and fantasize and embellish. I still listen to instinctual urges. I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind. I never water my garden without soaking myself. It has been after such times of joy that I have achieved my greatest creativity and produced my best work. – Leo Buscaglia

Don’t hold to anger, hurt or pain. They steal your energy and keep you from love. – Leo Buscaglia

The human need to play is a powerful one. When we ignore it, we feel there is something missing in our lives. – Leo Buscaglia

If I don’t have wisdom, I can teach you only ignorance. – Leo Buscaglia

The most important thing in the world is that you make yourself a loving person, because this is what you will be giving away. – Leo Buscaglia

There is only the moment. The now. Only what you are experiencing at this second is real. – Leo Buscaglia

We have to get children to understand that not only do they have this incredible uniqueness, but they also have something that sometimes we forget about. They are also potentiality. They are much more undiscovered than they are discovered. And there’s the wonder of it. It doesn’t matter where they are, they’re only just beginning and the big magical trip of life is digging it all out and discovering the wonderful you. – Leo Buscaglia

It is difficult for some people to accept that love is a choice. This seems to run counter to the generally accepted theory of romantic love which expounds that love is inborn and as such requires no more than to accept it. This theory believes that love is a magical force which frees us from all suffering and solves every problem, that it is an end unto itself. To a limited extent, there may be some truths to each of these beliefs but having the capacity to love is not the same as having the ability to love. – Leo Buscaglia

There are scores of people waiting for someone just like us to come along; people who will appreciate our compassion, our encouragement, who will need our unique talents. Someone who will live a happier life merely because we took the time to share what we had to give. – Leo Buscaglia

To love others, you must first love yourself. – Leo Buscaglia

Love creates an us without destroying the me. – Leo Buscaglia

Never idealize others. They will never live up to your expectations. Don’t over-analyze your relationships. Stop playing games. A growing relationship can only be nurtured by genuineness. – Leo Buscaglia

Hold on to your dreams for they are, in a sense, the stuff of which reality is made. It is through our dreams that we maintain the possibility of a better, more meaningful life. – Leo Buscaglia

It’s amazing – you may not realize it, but so much of what you are not is because you are literally standing in your own way of becoming. And what I’m pleading with you about is, get the hell out of your own way. – Leo Buscaglia

Love withers with predictability; its very essence is surprise and amazement. To make love a prisoner of the mundane is to take its passion and lose it forever. – Leo Buscaglia

Education should be the process of helping everyone to discover his uniqueness, to teach him how to develop that uniqueness, and then to show him how to share it because that’s the only reason for having anything. – Leo Buscaglia

Things omitted are often more deadly than errors committed. – Leo Buscaglia

I get so sick and tired of hearing people gripe about what their parents did to them. You know what your parents did to you? The best thing they could do. The best thing they knew how, the only thing in many cases that they knew how. Nobody has set out maliciously to hurt their child, unless they were psychotic. – Leo Buscaglia

Let go. Why do you cling to pain? There is nothing you can do about the wrongs of yesterday. It is not yours to judge. Why hold on to the very thing which keeps you from hope and love? – Leo Buscaglia

Value yourself. The only people who appreciate a doormat are people with dirty shoes. – Leo Buscaglia

The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don’t let them put you in that position. – Leo Buscaglia

Everybody needs a hug. It changes your metabolism. – Leo Buscaglia

It is paradoxical that many educators and parents still differentiate between a time for learning and a time for play without seeing the vital connection between them. – Leo Buscaglia

Because you are human, you do have magic. Get in touch with it. When you feel the insanity rising, don’t push it down. Let it come out. Just once-and then let me know what happens! – Leo Buscaglia

We need others. We need others to love and we need to be loved by them. There is no doubt that without it, we too, like the infant left alone, would cease to grow, cease to develop, choose madness and even death. – Leo Buscaglia

A wonderful realization will be the day you realize that you are unique in all the world. There is nothing that is an accident. You are a special combination for a purpose — and don’t let them tell you otherwise, even if they tell you that purpose is an illusion. (Live an illusion if you have to). You are that combination so that you can do what is essential for you to do. Don’t ever believe that you have nothing to contribute. The world is an incredibly unfulfilled tapestry. And only you can fulfill that tiny space that is yours. – Leo Buscaglia

Happiness is intrinsic, it’s an internal thing. When you build it into yourself, no external circumstances can take it away. – Leo Buscaglia

We will only begin to forgive when we can look upon the wrongdoers as ourselves, neither better nor worse. We need to remember that we coexist as mortals in the world, together, the wronged and the wrongdoer, and that, in our common humanity, the situation could readily be reversed. – Leo Buscaglia

There are all kinds of symbols. Verbal language is only one. Sometimes by opening our mouths, we make dreadful errors. It’s often so much nicer just to look at somebody and vibrate. – Leo Buscaglia

What we call the secret of happiness is no more a secret than our willingness to choose life. – Leo Buscaglia

It’s not enough to have lived. We should be determined to live for something. May I suggest that it be creating joy for others, sharing what we have for the betterment of personkind, bringing hope to the lost and love to the lonely. – Leo Buscaglia

What love we’ve given, we’ll have forever. What love we fail to give, will be lost for all eternity. – Leo Buscaglia

The lover must often say, I love because I must, because I will it. I love for myself, not for others. I love for the joy it gives me – and incidentally, only – for that joy it gives to others. If they reinforce me it will be good. If they do not, it also will be good, for I will to love. – Leo Buscaglia

Man is happiest when he is creating. In fact, the highest state of which man is capable lies in the creative act. – Leo Buscaglia

The essence of education is not to stuff you with facts but to help you discover your uniqueness, to teach you how to develop it, and then to show you how to give it away. – Leo Buscaglia

Choose the way of life. Choose the way of love. Choose the way of caring. Choose the way of goodness. It’s up to you. It’s your choice. – Leo Buscaglia

Life is uncharted territory. It reveals its story one moment at a time. – Leo Buscaglia

Learn to bend. It’s better than breaking. – Leo Buscaglia

Catch the beauty of the moment! – Leo Buscaglia

The most unfortunate thing that happens to a person who fears failure is that he limits himself by becoming afraid to try anything new. – Leo Buscaglia

We are not for everyone and everyone is not for us. The question is, ‘If we cannot be with another, can we at least not hurt them? Can we, at least, find a way to coexist?’ – Leo Buscaglia

You have the choice. You can choose joy over despair, happiness over tears, action over apathy, growth over stagnation. – Leo Buscaglia

Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt, but it is the only way to live life completely. – Leo Buscaglia

A loving relationship is one in which the loved one is free to be himself — to laugh with me, but never at me; to cry with me, but never because of me; to love life, to love himself, to love being loved. Such a relationship is based upon freedom and can never grow in a jealous heart – Leo Buscaglia

The only lasting trauma is the one we suffer without positive change. – Leo Buscaglia

Why do some people always see beautiful skies and grass and lovely flowers and incredible human beings, while others are hard-pressed to find anything or any place that is beautiful? – Leo Buscaglia

In a crazy world, it’s only your insanity that will keep you sane – Leo Buscaglia

Compassion is an act of tolerance where kindness and forgiveness reign. When we make the compassionate choice, we enhance the dignity of each individual, which is the very essence of loving them. – Leo Buscaglia

After all, the wrong is done. It is past and cannot be changed. We have only the present and the future upon which to move forward. – Leo Buscaglia

Labels are distancing phenomena. They push us away from each other. – Leo Buscaglia

We live in a small world. Not a leaf falls that doesn’t affect a myriad of things. When we reach out to someone in love and the effect is made – everyone, everything which comes in contact with the person we’ve effected is better for it. Of course, the converse is true, too. – Leo Buscaglia

We are no longer puppets being manipulated by outside powerful forces: we become the powerful force ourselves. – Leo Buscaglia

When it comes to giving love, the opportunities are unlimited, and we are all gifted. – Leo Buscaglia

Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with it is your gift back to God. – Leo Buscaglia

Forgive others, forgive yourself, forgive yourself for not being perfect, and accept responsibility for your own life. – Leo Buscaglia

Love is life. And if you miss love, you miss life. – Leo Buscaglia

Life is meant to be a celebration! It shouldn’t be necessary to set aside special times to remind us of this fact. Wise is the person who finds a reason to make every day a special one. – Leo Buscaglia

Definition of a relationship – an enduring, mutually-agreed upon connection or union, which fulfills certain needs of the individuals involved and the society in which they live. – Leo Buscaglia

To laugh is to risk appearing a fool, to weep is to risk appearing too sentimental, to reach out for another is to risk involvement, and to expose feelings is to risk exposing one’s true self. – Leo Buscaglia

Don’t brood. Get on with living and loving. You don’t have forever. – Leo Buscaglia

You have choice. You can select joy over despair. You can select happiness over tears. You can select action over apathy. You can select growth over stagnation. You can select you. And you can select life. And it’s time that people tell you you’re not at the mercy of forces greater than yourself. You are, indeed, the greatest force for you. – Leo Buscaglia

Each man lives love in his limited fashion and does not seem to relate the resultant confusion and loneliness to his lack of knowledge about love. – Leo Buscaglia

Each of us is responsible for creating an environment of warmth and consideration for those we love. I have always tried to define a good day not in terms of one in which all things were made right and comfortable for me but rather, as a day in which I have been able to make another’s day more loving and special for them. We must treat each other with dignity. Not because we merit it but because we grow best in thoughtfulness. – Leo Buscaglia

No one gets out of this world alive, so the time to live, learn, care, share, celebrate, and love is now. – Leo Buscaglia

I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love. – Leo Buscaglia

To love oneself is to struggle to rediscover and maintain your uniqueness – Leo Buscaglia

When we feel joyful, euphoric, happy, we are more open to life, more capable of seeing things clearly and handling daily tensions. – Leo Buscaglia

Love and the self are one and the discovery of either is the realization of both. – Leo Buscaglia

I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel that it’s my vehicle that is essential. I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel that it’s my education that is essential. I don’t think what is essential about me is my house or my car or my clothes. What is essential about me? Well, I think what is essential is that I live and embrace life right now, wherever I am. I grab it in my arms! Don’t spend time crying about yesterday-yesterday is over with! I forgive my past. I forgive the people who’ve hurt me. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life blaming and pointing a finger. – Leo Buscaglia

Love always creates, it never destroys. In this lie’s man’s only promise. – Leo Buscaglia

Life is a great and wondrous mystery, and the only thing we know that we have for sure is what is right here right now. Don’t miss it. – Leo Buscaglia

Experience seems to convince us that only fools trust, that only fools believe and accept all things. If this is true, then love is most foolish. For if it is not founded on trust, belief and acceptance, it’s not love. – Leo Buscaglia

Success often lies just the other side of failure. – Leo Buscaglia

Love is not a thing, it is not lost when given. You can offer your love completely to hundreds of people and still retain the same love you had originally. – Leo Buscaglia

We are so ruled by what people tell us we must be that we have forgotten who we are. – Leo Buscaglia

Only when we give joyfully, without hesitation or thought of gain, can we truly know what love means. – Leo Buscaglia

If he desired to know about automobiles, he would, without question, study diligently about automobiles. If his wife desired to be a gourmet cook, she’d certainly study the art of cooking, perhaps even attending a cooking class. Yet, it never seems as obvious to him that if he wants to live in love, he must spend at least as much time as the auto mechanic or the gourmet in studying love. – Leo Buscaglia

I just saw an ad the other day that I couldn’t believe. There was this woman-and I think it’s degrading to womankind-she was going out of her mind over a new product called A Thousand Flushes. Here she was in her toilet, saying, Oh, I love this product! and, My life is complete! Good God-if your joy depends on A Thousand Flushes, you’re sick! – Leo Buscaglia

I would not want to form a partnership with an architect who has only a little knowledge of building or a broker who has a limited knowledge of the stock market. Still, we form what we hope to be permanent relationships in love with people who have hardly any knowledge of what love is. – Leo Buscaglia

Every day we are offered new means for learning and growing in love. – Leo Buscaglia

I have a very strong feeling that the opposite of love is not hate – it’s apathy. It’s not giving a damn. – Leo Buscaglia

We all need each other. – Leo Buscaglia

Life lived for tomorrow will always be just a day away from being realized. – Leo Buscaglia

Like any other living, growing thing, love requires effort to keep it healthy. – Leo Buscaglia

Say yes to life! Yes to wonder, to joy, to despair. Yes to pain, yes to what you don’t understand. Try yes. Try always. Try possible. Try hopeful. Try I will. And try I can. – Leo Buscaglia

Change is the end result of all true learning. Change involves three things: First, a dissatisfaction with self – a felt void or need; second, a decision to change to fill the void or need; and third, a conscious dedication to the process of growth and change – the willful act of making the change, doing something. – Leo Buscaglia

We don’t love to be loved in return; we love to love. – Leo Buscaglia

He must also know evil, hate and bigotry as real phenomena, but he must see love as the greater force. He must not doubt this even for a moment or he is lost. His only salvation is to dedicate himself to love, in the same fashion as Gandhi did to militant nonviolence, as Socrates to truth, as Jesus did to love and as More did to integrity. Only then will he have the strength to combat the forces of doubt, confusion and contradiction. He can depend upon no on or no thing for reinforcement and assurance but himself. – Leo Buscaglia

Don’t spend your precious time asking Why isn’t the world a better place? It will only be time wasted. The question to ask is How can I make it better? To that there is an answer. – Leo Buscaglia

The heart is the place where we live our passions. It is frail and easily broken, but wonderfully resilient. There is no point in trying to deceive the heart. It depends upon our honesty for its survival. – Leo Buscaglia

My rule is always, People first and things second. – Leo Buscaglia

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow or love. Chained by his certitude, he is a slave; he has forfeited his freedom. Only the person who risks is truly free. – Leo Buscaglia

The life and love we create is the life and love we live. – Leo Buscaglia

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