5 Motivational Instagram Post Design Ideas

Motivational quotes are social media darlings — and it’s not hard to understand why. When our current times are weird, difficult, anxious, or just plain heartbreaking, sharing a kind, encouraging message can go a long way — and travel a long social distance.

More than just words on a square, a well-thought out, appropriately-timed motivational Instagram post can be both uplifting and aesthetically gorgeous. Consider your audience when posting, especially in times when a lot of people are hurting, and ask yourself if this post is truly a message of hope, or could it be interpreted as trite or self-serving? Speak what you know to be truth in your heart, and it will be hard to go wrong!

Small businesses can also share these messages with their customers and followers, because behind every great brand is a real human.

1. Post a bold message of unity or action

Browse more Instagram post templates to customize.

Using graphics, colors, and curved text a powerful quote can become a work of art. The hands in this post are from the All You Need is Love graphics set, and we curved the text in sections to match the curve of the background graphic to add some fluidity and motion for the eye to travel over the post.

Employ a bit of design know-how by choosing a font that calls up the same emotion as your words. Think scripty or handwriting fonts for gentle encouragement (“You are amazing”) and bolder, blocky fonts for more direct, no-nonsense messages ("Silence is violence").

2. Black & white & read all over

This is a template! Customize it with your own words or graphics.

Going for a strong and simple look? You can't miss with black text on a white background. For added atmosphere, we added a graphic from the Shadows and Light set. Doesn't it look like lying in bed in the morning, the sun streaming onto your walls while you think good thoughts to get yourself revved up for the day?

3. Encouragement in good times & bad

Like this template? Make it yours by customizing the look.

Give a double dose of motivation by pairing a favorite quote with an inspiring picture. Use one you snapped yourself, or peruse the options available in PicMonkey's stock photo libraries and see what speaks to you. And if you wanna get a little more designy with it, give a paper graphic a try to add a neat 3D effect.

4. Elevate simple reminders with text effects

Sometimes all it takes to lift someone's spirits is a single word: focus, breathe, cocktails... But if your message isn't quite visually poppin’ enough, try adding a text effect like drop shadow or outline (or both!) on your words to make them stand out. Pair your simple message with a simple background — but it doesn't have to be a solid color. Try using the Ombre effect on a colored square, or apply a Color Gradient texture to the post's background.

5. Subtle use of graphics = big feels

Another oft-used tactic in motivational quote image design is the gorgeous graphic (or two) + inspiring word combo.

You can customize this template! To the Stars and Back

Sure you can slap a smiley face graphic on your post, and ain't nothing wrong with that! But you can also use graphics in an unexpected way to add mood, depth, and subtlety. For this post we combined a little heart graphic with a splatter graphic stretched out over the whole image to give the illusion of a starry sky. Heavenly!

If you’re creating while you’re on-the-go, head to Graphics in the mobile app. Then size, customize, and layer until you love it.

Word searching

If all these motivational quote image design ideas have you super motivated to make a few, but you can’t find the right words, take a gander at some of these beloved phrases.

  • “You will never have this day again, so make it count.”

  • “You didn’t come this far to only come this far.”

  • “When you feel like quitting, think about why you started.”

  • “Don’t look back, you’re not going that way.”

  • “Actually, I can.”

  • “In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take.”

  • “The best way to get things done is simply to begin.”

Word-filled websites like The Quotations Page organize their uplifting tidbits by author, and the ever-popular BrainyQuote lets you search by author, popular authors, authors celebrating a birthday that day, and authors trending in the news. Books are also treasure troves of great quotes, and then there’s the internet’s ultimate inspiration catalog, Pinterest.

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This article was written by PicMonkey Staff, a multicellular organism of hive-minded sub-parts who just wanna get you the ideas and information you crave, so you can make powerful images that level up your business.