There are many things the world needs more of – love, peace, peanut butter Magnums, tights that actually stay up – but one thing we have no shortage of whatsoever is motivational quotes. They’re everywhere. On our walls, on our fridges, decorating our notebooks and cluttering up our Instagram feeds. They are the hot air that powers Pinterest like a jet engine.

But of course, they’re not always helpful. There are only so many times you can be told to ‘be a unicorn!’ before you want to smash your phone screen with your non-existent horn – and of all the genuinely cool and inspiring things Audrey Hepburn did in her time on earth, that quote about believing in pink ain’t one of them.

So as your antidote to all the whimsical sunsets, we’ve dug up 13 truly awesome quotes from some truly awesome women. Go kick some ass today – like yourself, not a unicorn.

(The hooves would just be impractical.)

“Courage is like — it’s a habitus, a habit, a virtue: you get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming. You learn courage by couraging.”

Marie M. Daly, the first African-American woman to to earn a PhD in Chemistry

 

“However many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there.”

Nora Ephron, first lady of American screenwriting

 

“If I stop to kick every barking dog, I am not going to get where I’m going.”

Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who won three gold, one silver, and two bronze medals at four different Olympic Games.

 

“We can’t be feminine and be feminists and be successful? I want to be a f***ing feminist and wear a f***ing Peter Pan collar. So f***ing what?”

Zooey Deschanel, your fringe icon and all-round comedy babe

 

“Everyone’s got some greatness in them. You do. The girl over there does. That guy on the left has some. But in order to really mine it, you have to own it. You have to grab hold of it. You have to believe it.”

Shonda Rhimes, creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, from her book Year of Yes

 

“You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.”

JK Rowling, everyone’s favourite dream auntie

 

“She refused to be bored chiefly because she wasn’t boring.”

Zelda Fitzgerald, Jazz Age legend, from her Collected Writings

 

“Be brave and fearless [enough] to know that even if you do make a wrong decision, you’re making it for a good reason.”

Adele. You know Adele.

 

“Because you don’t live near a bakery, doesn’t mean you have to go without cheesecake.”

Hedy Lamarr, 1940s movie star and inventor, who developed the radio wave system that led to the modern creation of wi-fi (thanks Hedy!)

 

“I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.”

Maya Angelou, author, poet and civil rights activist

 

“I say they should enjoy it while they can. You’ll be happy later to have taken pictures of yourself when you looked good. It’s human nature.”

Margaret Atwood, the Booker Prize-winning novellist, on (you guessed it) selfies

 

“One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world.”

Malala Yousafzai, female education activist and the youngest ever Nobel Prize winner.

What better motivation could you have before double Geography?

Image: Getty

Hooray! The week is finally over. It’s been a kinda dreary week but we promise there’s a lot of good news to go around. So now you can get started on all your weekend-y things (aka spending as many hours as humanly possible in your pyjamas) and take a look at all the stuff we’ve been reading, watching and loving this week.

Beyoncé is preggas

Just in case you somehow missed this PSA, Blue Ivy is about to become a big sister. But what could be better than the news that Beyoncé is pregnant? The news that Beyoncé is pregnant with TWINS. Predictably, the internet went into overdrive; a record 8,868 tweets were sent per second and she’s already racked up 7.5 million likes on Instagram.

Congrats Bey and Jay. Every celebrity take note: this is how you announce a pregnancy. And double kudos to her for doing it in such a sensible bra.

JK Rowling is throwing some serious shade on Twitter

We’ve always known that JK Rowling is not a woman to back down from a fight but this week, she reminded of us why she’s one of the most successful authors of all time. With just 140 characters, she completely shut down some haters on Twitter by being sassy af. Trolls beware.

Lucy Hale has a new TV show 

For all the Pretty Little Liars fans who are wondering how they’re going to fill the void in their life once 7B airs, we’re got some good news. Entertainment Weekly announced that Lucy Hale is set to star in a new show called: Life Sentence. Intrigued? So are we. The premise is that Lucy’s character is diagnosed with terminal cancer, so she decides to let loose and really enjoy her remaining days on earth without worrying about the consequences. The twist? Turns out she’s not going to die after all. BOOM.

Hidden Figures is inspiring the kids

The internet’s heart collectively melted when three girls from Milwuakee College Prep decided to dress up this week to go and see Hidden Figures, a film about the black women who worked for NASA during the 60s and have been basically overlooked by history. According to Buzzfeed, 8-year-old Ambrielle Baker-Rogers came up with the idea as part of a school assignment for Black History Month. Girls, we salute both your hair and your commitment levels.

Priceless. #Femthefuture #Hiddenfigures

A photo posted by Janelle Monáe (@janellemonae) on

There’s another Beauty and the Beast Trailer 

There’s less that two months until the new live action Beauty and the Beast fills our screens. To keep us going, Disney have released a new trailer and OH. MY. GOD, is it giving us all the feels.

John Mayer’s new songs will make you swoon

John Mayer dropped a new EP this week and we have been listening to it on repeat. Our pick for this weekend is aptly titled ‘Love on the Weekend.’ But if you can’t find love, pancakes will do.

Happy Friday!

It’s not just Harry Potter who wants to make the world a better place (causally defeating the Dark Lord and everything) – his creator JK Rowling does too.

Recently she’s been tweeting a lot about her charity and because we love her, we thought we’d learn some more about it.


You might not know that along with being your imaginary favourite auntie, JK also started a charity in 2004, after she read an article about the harm that orphanages can do to children around the world.

She named it Lumos, after the spell that brings that light. *sob*

lumos2

Here’s the lowdown: across the world, eight million children are living in orphanages and institutions, without the love and care of a family. Most of these children have families that could look after them, but they had to give them up to orphanages because of poverty, disability and a lack of access to basic services, like education and healthcare.

One study also found that young people raised in these environments are 10 times more likely to be involved in prostitution, 40 times more likely to have a criminal record and 500 times more likely to take their own lives.

Lumos works with governments and communities to fix these outdated systems that keep families apart. Here’s an amazing video (narrated by JK herself) explaining why the charity’s mission is so important.

How can I help?

You can buy a copy of Tales of Beedle the Bard. JK gave the books rights to Lumos, so £1.61 of every sale of the Bloomsbury edition is donated straight to Lumos programmes.

Or if you already have that one on your bookshelf, try Very Good Lives, the transcript of the speech JK gave at Harvard. A whopping 90% of the proceeds are going straight to Lumos (and the other 10% is going to financial-aid at Harvard).

JK Rowling tweet

If you want to go one step further, you could organise a school non-uniform day, a bake sale or even a movie night. Lumos has a really helpful section on their website that explains how to go about organising an event as well as loads of other ways to get involved – and help reunite vulnerable children with their families.

After all, it’s like Dumbledore said:

“Happiness can be found even in the darkest times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”