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10 of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid’s Wisest Quotes to Live By

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He has been part of Dubai’s transformation from fishing village to sprawling metropolis, and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has picked up many pearls of wisdom along the way. The Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, who has published a number of books as well as delivered numerous speeches, can often be relied upon to provide an inspirational soundbite or two. Here, to celebrate his birthday which falls on July 15, we’ve rounded up some of his most insightful musings.

On leadership

“It is easy to rule through fear, but it takes a rare leader to rule through love.”

On women

“Our job is to provide an environment that unlocks women’s potential – one that protects their dignity and femininity, helps them create the necessary balance in their lives, and values their talents and potential. Given this environment, I am confident that women will perform nothing short of miracles.”

On tolerance

“Tolerance is no catchphrase, but a quality we must cherish and practice. It must be woven into the fabric of our society to safeguard our future and maintain the progress we have made.”

On the UAE

“What makes us proud of our nation is not the height of our buildings, the breadth of our streets, or the magnitude of our shopping malls, but rather the openness and tolerance of our nation. Our pride stems from the fact that we are a country where everyone thrives equally regardless of their differences.”

On staying motivated

“I don’t like to see someone who does not have a hobby, sport or passion in life. Idleness is not only an attitude towards work; it starts with the mind.”

On success

“We, in the UAE, have no such word as “impossible”; it does not exist in our lexicon. Such a word is used by the lazy and the weak, who fear challenges and progress. When one doubts his potential and capabilities as well as his confidence, he will lose the compass that leads him to success and excellence, thus failing to achieve his goal. I require you, youth, to insist on number one.”

On appreciating the best of life

“It is such a beautiful life, but many people spend it worrying, burdened and frowning. You can easily see the beauty of life in the laughter of a child, the tenderness of a mother, the smile of a friend or the love of a compassionate wife.”

On the value of life

“I live a simple life, my life away from leadership is very simple. I wake up early, clean up and pray. I have breakfast with my family. Sometimes I visit my friends, have a cup of coffee, or visit shopping malls and have lunch at a restaurant one of them recommends and see people. This simple life makes me happy.”

On dreaming big

“Everybody starts small. We all begin life as a single cell. Every business starts as one person with an idea. How fast you go, how far you get, is in your hands. The bigger your vision, the bigger your achievement will be. Will you stumble on the way? Perhaps, but we cannot let fear keep us small. We have to be brave to be big.”

On owning your achievements

“I once read an article in a foreign newspaper saying: luck smiles back at Dubai. I respond: when they want to diminish your achievements, they attribute them to luck.”

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