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Woman & Home
Emily Smith

32 of the best Princess Diana quotes, from inspirational words about motherhood to humourous quips

Princess Diana quotes - Diana looking with her pearl tiara .

Princess Diana will forever be remembered for her unwavering grace. From her many charitable endeavours to her down-to-earth humour, there's really no surprise she became known as the people's princess. Her warm personality always shone through during public events and interviews.

We will forever remember her for, it's her infectious kindness when meeting the public, travelling to promote charities and showing support when others didn't. From her work during the AIDS epidemic to her on-site advocacy against landmine usage, Diana proved time and time again that her compassion stretched far beyond the palace walls.

This genuine kindness and bravery is why there is no shortage of inspirational and endearing quotes from the Princess.

32 of the best Princess Diana quotes

While Princess Diana sported some best looks of the time, it's her kindness and compassion that we'll forever remember her for.

1. What she said about her leadership style

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"I do things differently because I don't go by a rule book, because I lead from the heart, not the head, and albeit that's got me into trouble in my work, I understand that."

When interviewed by Martin Bashir in the 1995 film An Interview with HRH The Princess of Wales, Princess Diana was asked about why she thought the Royal Family had doubts about her being Queen one day.

2. Her humanitarian stance

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"Nothing brings me more happiness than trying to help the most vulnerable people in society. It is a goal and an essential part of my life—a kind of destiny. Whoever is in distress can call on me. I will come running wherever they are."

Diana spoke these moving and inspiring words during a speech in 1997 at the Royal Geographical Society in London.

3. Her attitude towards motherhood

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"A mother's arms are more comforting than anyone else's."

One thing history will never forget about Princess Diana is her unwavering bond with her sons Prince William and Prince Harry and her relatable parenting style. Both carry on their mother's special gentle and involved parenting with their own children.

4. The random acts of kindness quote

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"Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you."

Princess Diana was always an advocate for kindness and she certainly left behind a compassionate legacy, filled with charitable activism, well-mannered public outings and down-to-earth conversations with people.

5. Her thoughts on the British people

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“I think the British people need someone in public life to give affection, to make them feel important, to support them, to give them light in their dark tunnels. I see it as a possibly unique role, and yes, I've had difficulties, as everybody has witnessed over the years, but let's now use the knowledge I've gathered to help other people in distress."

Diana always appreciated the support from the British people, there’s no doubt why she became known as the people’s princess.

6. The 'disease' of feeling unloved

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"I'm not a political animal but I think the biggest disease this world suffers from in this day and age is the disease of people feeling unloved, and I know that I can give love for a minute, for half an hour, for a day, for a month, but I can give—I'm very happy to do that, and I want to do that."

One of the many memorable quotes from Princess Diana came from her raw and heartbreaking interview for the 1995 BBC panorama programme she did with Martin Bashir.

7. How she raised her sons

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"I want my boys to have an understanding of people's emotions, their insecurities, people's distress, and their hopes and dreams."

Despite being perhaps the most famous woman in the world at the time, Diana was still a relatable and down-to-earth mother to Prince William and Prince Harry. She was known to make sure the boys had parts of a regular childhood despite being in the public eye.

8. Her outlook on love

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“If you find someone you love in your life, then hang on to that love. And if you were lucky enough to find someone who loves you, then one must protect it."

While Diana undoubtedly wore one of the best royal dresses and the televised ceremony was full of pomp and revellery, it's no secret that her marriage to Charles was difficult, even in the early days. During the infamous 1995 BBC interview, Diana recalls a time she spoke to a young Prince William at his school as the rumours of the then-Prince Charles’ adultery were circulating.

9. Her unwavering desire to help

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“Anywhere I see suffering, that is where I want to be, doing what I can.”

This is one of the many powerful quotes taken from recently unearthed 1991 recordings of Princess Diana where she detailed her early life and experiences after joining the Royal Family. These recordings were released as a National Geographic documentary on the 20th anniversary of her death in 2017.

10. Her experience of being a princess

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“Being a princess isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.”

It’s no secret that Diana’s life as a princess was extremely challenging and painful at times for her. Despite the scrutiny and lack of privacy from the press, Diana always led with compassion and respect even at the worst of times.

11. The most important role to her

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“Don’t call me an icon. I’m just a mother trying to help.”

Diana never saw herself in the ways the rest of the world did, instead, she stayed as grounded as possible and saw her most important role as that of a mother. She worked hard to give her sons a normal lifestyle, from public schooling to McDonald's trips, her children having a normal childhood was what mattered to her even if it meant defying royal tradition.

12. Speaking about her job

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"I knew what my job was; it was to go out and meet the people and love them.”

Princess Diana certainly succeeded at this as she was adored by nations around the world and still to this day remains in many people’s hearts.

13. Her free spirit

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"I like to be a free spirit. Some don't like that, but that's the way I am."

Although it unfortunately wasn’t received well by the Royal Family at times, her fun personality was admirable and helped people bond with the Princess. Whether that was taking her sons to the theme parks or simply enjoying herself on a boat at sea, Diana made happiness a priority.

14. Her independence

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“People think that, at the end of the day, a man is the only answer. Actually, a fulfilling job is better for me.”

In her 1995 interview with the BBC, Diana didn’t hold back on her feelings towards her relationships, especially her relationship with the then-Prince Charles. She spoke about how at the beginning of her marriage she knew she was ‘on her own’.

15. Her naturally maternal spirit

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"Hugs can do great amounts of good — especially for children."

Before becoming a working royal, Diana worked as a nanny, children’s dance coach and nursery teacher’s assistant. She was always very fond of children and took every opportunity to share her maternal side with the people she would meet.

16. Her sarcastic sense of humour

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"They say it is better to be poor and happy than rich and miserable, but how about a compromise like moderately rich and just moody?"

It’s not just Diana’s parenting style and casual looks that made her relatable to many, but also her quick wit and self-awareness. Despite owning some of the best royal gowns and showstopping jewellery, money and possessions didn't bring her true happiness. 

17. The need to care for each other and ourselves

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"Every one of us needs to show how much we care for each other and, in the process, care for ourselves."

Princess Diana famously opened up about her mental health struggles both after having a baby and due to being in the public eye. She then went on to work with charities that helped women through similar difficult times and situations.

18. Her ability to be queen

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"I'd like to be a queen in people's hearts but I don't see myself being queen of this country."

There’s a reason her interview with the BBC in 1995 will be forever remembered and it’s because of quotes like this one. Princess Diana was very open about the doubts many had for her when it came to her ability to ever be queen, however, she also wasn’t interested in being the type of queen that was expected.

19. Her powerful involvement during the AIDs epidemic

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"HIV does not make people dangerous to know, so you can shake their hands and give them a hug: Heaven knows they need it."

One of Princess Diana's most iconic legacies is her involvement with the HIV/AIDs epidemic in the 80s. In 1987, Diana opened the UK’s first HIV/AIDs clinic in London and met with several patients there. More controversially, she hugged and shook the hands of patients without gloves - a bold and stigma-shattering action at the time, as many falsely believed the illness was passed by touch. 

20. Her mischevious streak

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"If men had to have babies, they would only ever have one each."

This particularly daring and controversial comment was printed in the Observer in 1984. Another example of Diana’s wit and mischievous sense of humour.

21. Her feelings around divorce

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"I think like any marriage, especially when you’ve had divorced parents like myself, you want to try even harder to make it work.”

After experiencing a challenging and tumultuous divorce from her own parents, Diana openly discussed how she truly didn’t want her marriage to end in divorce and was deeply saddened that it did.

22. The confusion she felt around the public's interest in her

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"It took a long time to understand why people were so interested in me."

On several occasions, Diana expressed her confusion and surprise regarding the public and media’s infatuation with her. Being only 20 when she started courting with the then-Prince Charles she was still very young and had insecurities like most young people do. This confusion continued for a while as the paparazzi only got more intrusive and obsessed with Charles and Diana's relationship.

23. Her spirituality

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"I’m aware that people I have loved and have died and are in the spirit world looking after me."

Although she never explicitly spoke about her religious views, Diana was raised a Christian so it’s no surprise she would believe in the afterlife and find comfort in her loved ones remaining nearby.

24. Her feminine instincts

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"I have a woman’s instinct and it’s always a good one."

As well as being humble and down to earth, Princess Diana wasn’t afraid of discussing her strengths too. She spoke about how people were often intimidated by her strong personality and of course, the way she had trustworthy instincts.

25. The way she couldn't live without her sons

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"I live for my sons. I would be lost without them."

By now we know how close the bond between Diana and Prince William and Prince Harry really was but her parenting style was truly unusual for the royals at the time. Even the way she would publicly hug her sons and hold their hands was unusual for the family, with Prince Harry recalling that his father only ever really got a handshake from his mother, Queen Elizabeth II.

26. Her 'destiny' in life

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“Nothing brings me more happiness than trying to help the most vulnerable people in society. It is a good and essential part of my life, a kind of destiny."

Sharing her thoughts with Martin Bashir in the iconic 1995 BBC TV interview, she shared her need to help those less fortunate. This is the reason behind her working with over 100 charities and attending event after event for every cause she could.

27. Her philosphical quote

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"You can’t comfort the afflicted with afflicting the comfortable."

Princess Diana wasn't just relatable and compassionate, she was also very wise and would often impart these inspiring nuggets of wisdom during speeches and interviews. 

28. Her desire to be loved

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"I don’t want expensive gifts; I don’t want to be bought. I have everything I want. I just want someone to be there for me, to make me feel safe and secure."

If there's one thing we know about Princess Diana it's that her priorities were far from material things, she cared more for her relationships and helping people. 

29. The importance of physical connection

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"I touch people. I think everyone needs that. Placing a hand on a friend’s face means making contact."

The Princess was often open about intimacy and wasn't worried about showing her love towards her family through touch and physical means. Whether that was cuddling her sons, kissing her then-husband or even meeting strangers, the love and care she felt for others could always be seen. 

30. Her views on others

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"Everyone needs to be valued. Everyone has the potential to give something back."

Being a naturally charitable and compassionate person herself, Princess Diana was an advocate for influencing others to be the same and help others. This desire to promote helping others is perhaps where the idea for the Diana Award came from, a charitable legacy to Diana whose mission is to 'foster, develop and inspire positive change in the lives of young people.' 

31. The way she refused to stand still

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"I want to do, not just to be."

From the very beginning of her introduction to the Royal Family, Diana never stopped working and even after having her sons she would take them along across the globe with her to complete her royal duties. She was associated with around 100 charities and was consistently in attendance at fundraiser dinners or charity balls. 

32. The way she wanted to be needed

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"I want to walk into a room, be it a hospital for the dying or a hospital for the sick children, and feel that I am needed."

Before she became an official member of the royal family, Diana worked with children a lot and as she started her royal work she continued to help with children and also those suffering from illnesses. It was clear she wanted to use her power and abilities to help those less fortunate. 

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