15 Nursing Quotes to Inspire You

15-nursing-quotes-NDC (1)

A deep love for nurses has produced hundreds of nursing quotes commending the healthcare professionals who care for us in times of need. If you are a nurse or simply share this appreciation for nurses, the sentiments in the quotes that follow certainly resonate.

Just how respected are nurses? According to the annual Gallup survey of the most trusted professionals, nursing has ranked first in 14 of the past 15 years.

In this survey which surveys Americans’ thoughts on the professions with the highest ethical standards and level of honesty, nursing has ranked first in nearly all years, since the poll began in 1999. According to Advanced Healthcare Network, they were only topped in the poll when Gallup included firefighters on a one-time basis, in 2001, due to their prominent role in 9/11 rescue efforts.

The following nursing quotes strike at the heart of the profession known for care and love. Take a look at the following quotes that are sure to inspire you.

What Are Nurses?

A nurse or the field of nursing involves treating people with illness or injury, but does that capture the heart of the profession?

As you can see in the following quotes, there’s much more to nurses and nursing. Here are some emotional quotes that seek to define nurses and what they do:

1.     “To do what nobody else will do, a way that nobody else can do, in spite of all we go through; is to be a nurse.”

Rawsi Williams

2.     “The definition of a nurse: To go above and beyond the call of duty. The first to work and the last to leave. The heart and soul of caring. who will pass through your life for a minute and impact it for an eternity. An empowered individual whom you may meet for only a 12-hour period, but who will put you and yours above theirs.”


3.     “Nursing is an art: and if it is to be made an art, it requires an exclusive devotion as hard a preparation, as any painter’s or sculptor’s work; for what is the having to do with dead canvas or dead marble, compared with having to do with the living body, the temple of God’s spirit? It is one of the Fine Arts: I had almost said, the finest of Fine Arts.”

Florence Nightingale

4.     “A nurse will always give us hope, an angel with a stethoscope.”

Carrie Latet

Praising Nurses

You could say it’s easy to take nurses for granted. And for nurses, it’s easy to get used to the structure of the day and not realize what type of impact is made.

These quotes touch on the praise that nurses deserve:

5.     “It would not be possible to praises nurses too highly.”

Stephen Ambrose

6.     “The nurses were all angels in my eyes.”

Randy Castillo

7.     ”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

Advice to Nurses

Our next group of quotes is specifically for the nurses. How should you approach each day and integrate the values that led you to this profession?

These quotes touch on this important aspect—and the final quote brings up something that will change you in your time as a nurse:

8.     “Be the one who nurtures and builds. Be the one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart one who looks for the best in people. Leave people better than you found them.”

Marvin Ashton

9.     “As a nurse, we have the opportunity to heal the heart, mind, soul and body of our patients, their families and ourselves. They may not remember your name but they will never forget the way you made them feel.”

Maya Angelou

10. “There is always that one special patient that you will remember forever.”


Other Nursing Quotes

The last grouping of quotes is also inspirational and touches on the nursing profession:

11. “Unless we are making progress in our nursing every year, every month, every week, take my word for it we are going back.”

Florence Nightingale

12. “Nurses have come a long way in a few short decades. In the past our attention focused on physical, mental and emotional healing. Now we talk of healing your life, healing the environment, and healing the planet.”

Lynn Keegan

13. “Nurses are there when the last breath is taken and nurses are there when the first breath is taken. Although it is more enjoyable to celebrate the birth, it is just as important to comfort in death.”

Christine Bell

14. “Bound by paperwork, short on hands, sleep, and energy… nurses are rarely short on caring.”

Sharon Hudacek

15. “Nurses: one of the few blessings of being ill.”

Sara Moss-Wolfe


As we look at these powerful quotes, it’s important to remember the heart of nursing—which is captured in the dedication to quality care, a passion for people and a heart for improving others’ quality of life, and ultimately, happiness.

Whether you know a nurse, are a nurse or simply appreciate the way that nurses go above and beyond, it’s easy to understand how these quotes capture sentiments we all share.

At Notre Dame College, we’re honored to train nurses with our online degree options. If you’re a nurse and interested in furthering your career, you should consider our online RN to BSN and online MSN degree programs.