Awards season is here once again! As the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences rolls out the red carpet to celebrate Hollywood’s finest, all eyes turn to this year’s Oscar nominees. Sure, the bright lights and big stages make for an exciting scene, but strip away the glitz and the glamour and what’s left?

More important than a gorgeous gown or top notch tuxedo are the people behind the art being honored. Each year, the list of Oscar nominees is a collection of some of the most creative and successful people in the world. Their words transcend the business of making movies, and have inspired countless individuals across the globe to reach for success in their own careers. 

If you’re looking for a boost of positive energy to fuel your next career decision, consider these quotes from Oscar nominees:

“I tend to think you’re fearless when you recognize why you should be scared of things, but do them anyway.” – Christian Bale

“Perfect isn’t normal, nor is it interesting.” – Amy Adams

“You’re a human being; you live once and life is wonderful, so eat the damn red velvet cupcake.” – Emma Stone

“I’d tell myself to listen to my heart. Listen to that little voice that says, ‘Mmm, I don’t think so.’ Because when you override that, you basically override who you are.” – Glenn Close, on what she would tell her younger self.

“Social media has colonized what was once a sacred space occupied by emptiness: the space reserved for thought and creativity.” – Mahershala Ali

“I think if anyone tells you the odds are slim, just keep walking. Just do whatever the hell you want to do, because they don’t know what they’re talking about. When you love something, and you work really really hard at it, you can do it.” – Melissa McCarthy

“Nothing is funnier than confidently doing the wrong thing.” – Adam McKay

“I believe in destiny. But I also believe that you can’t just sit back and let destiny happen. A lot of times, an opportunity might fall into your lap, but you have to be ready for that opportunity.” – Spike Lee

“Sometimes in life you don’t always feel like a winner, but that doesn’t mean you’re not a winner.” – Lady Gaga

We couldn’t have said it any better ourselves, Ms. Gaga! Win or lose on the big night, these nominees have all given us powerful quotes (oh, and movies) to consider. What are your favorite quotes from Oscar nominees that have inspired your career choices? Join the conversation in the comments below!