Tough Guy Sayings and Quotes

Below you will find our collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous old tough guy quotes, tough guy sayings, and tough guy proverbs, collected over the years from a variety of sources.

I'm tough when I have to be, tender when I should be. When you find a really tough guy, he's not a predator. He doesn't have to prove himself. Guys who have to pretend to be tough, they ain't. I'm tough.      

Mr. T

The bravest sight in the world is to see a great man struggling against adversity.     

Seneca The Younger

I detest bullies for their cowardice, and despise them for their cruelty. I never knew a tough man who preyed on the weak. Tough men hate bullies almost as much as bullies hate tough men.      

Gregory David Roberts

A man who is strong and tough never needs to show it in his dress or the way he cuts his hair. Toughness is a quality of the mind, like bravery or honesty or ambition; it has nothing whatever to do with muscles.     

E.R. Braithwaite

Toughness is a good thing, yet it is considered good only in men. When a woman is tough, men can't stand it. I like being tough and smart.      

Lillian Vernon

Every tough man has a tough past and an even tougher future.     


It's easy to be a tough guy when no one's going to come knocking on your door.     

Pete Hamill

My father was a very tough guy with me and my brothers. He wanted to teach us a lot of discipline and life philosophy. As I became more interested in martial arts, he started teaching a lot of fighting philosophy and karate philosophy. While he was a tough father, he also knew when to be sweet and show a softer side.      

Lyoto Machida

A tough guy, to me, stands for something, and he's not afraid to get a beating.      

Frank Grillo

When you're playing a tough guy, all the other guys want to be tough right back at you and it amps them up.     

David Hayter

I'm a tough guy, but I'm a good guy. I'm durable because when you play football they want you being tough, not just because you sprain your ankle crying 'Mama, mama!"     

Mr. T

I'm not trying to say I'm a big tough guy... I'm a typical American-waist deep in this violent culture.     

Henry Rollins

My mom used to say that I became a fighter and a scrapper and a tough guy to protect who I am at my core.      

Vin Diesel

By the time a man is 35 he knows that the images of the right man, the tough man, the true man which he received in high school do not work in life.     

Robert Bly

It's a very hard thing to resist, real goodness, in a tough man.      

Gregory David Roberts

A tough man, usually ends up in prison, but a strong-minded man, will own the prison.     

Anthony Liccione

I play tough guys in movies and behaved like one in front of the press because I thought that was what a man did.      

Tom Sizemore

I'm a pretty tough guy, you know. I'm a pretty hard man. I've got a lot of compassion, but I don't waste time with people.      

Anthony Hopkins

A weak man's always in a hurry to punish somebody, so he can show how tough he is.      

Robert Ferrigno

If you think tough men are dangerous, wait until you see what weak men are capable of.     

Jordan Peterson

Behind every tough man, is a soft boy, who has vowed to be strong and unbreakable, against all odds.     

Nuel E Dominics

A tough man always enjoys his thug life.     

Aanand Tamizh

For the choke, there are no 'Tough guys'. With an arm lock he can be tough and resist the pain. With the choke he just passes out, goes to sleep.     

Helio Gracie

I'm not a tough guy. I'm just delivering the truth and only the truth and if you can't deal with it, too bad.      

Kevin O'Leary

Without discipline, no matter how good you are, you are nothing! One day, and I might not be around; you're going to meet a tough guy who takes your best shot. He'll keep coming because he's tough. Don't get discouraged. That's when the discipline comes in.     

Mike Tyson

Cowboy boots with a suit? You're a rough, tough businessman. Chaps with a bow tie? You're in the rough, tough man business.     

Dana Gould

I am a tough guy / With a soft heart / That's why people / Hurt me internally / Not externally     


If they didn't call you a tough guy, then what else would they call you? Something worse than that? I'm playing parts, and if they call you that, it's because I played the part right.      

Ray Winstone