Top Lessons from Great Motivational Speakers

pennyLEADERSHIP, Productivity

top lessons from great motivational speakers

When we learn life-changing lessons from great motivational speakers, it inspires and drives us to make a difference in our lives.

Life is filled with ups and downs and we all know that no single person has all the knowledge and insights we need to navigate this bumpy journey. Each motivational speaker has a unique message, a unique way of bringing their lessons to their audiences. Each motivational speaker tells their story to entertain and educate at the same time. Some stories are funny, some are insightful, some are sad but all touch our hearts and have us reflect on the trajectory of our story and how we will write the next chapter.

We realize that motivation can drive us to see things from a different perspective in our personal and professional lives. I speak about the power of perspective often. It is key to our personal growth, healthy relationships, faster problem solving and living happier more meaningful lives. Great motivational speakers have great wisdom to share from their personal experiences, research, and experimentations.

In this article, we will talk about the top lessons from a few motivational speakers, whose messages resonated powerfully in my heart, and made a notable impact in my life.

These words are inspirational and memorable and can help you make notable changes across different aspects of your life.

Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek great motivational speakersSimon Sinek is a visionary and brilliant motivational speaker with rare intellect. He is also a bestselling author of over five books, including Leaders Eat Last, Find Your Why, The Infinite Game, Together is Better, and Start with Why.

One of Simon’s fundamental principles is optimism and how harnessing the power of positive thinking can change the way we perceive our obstacles.

Here’s one of his famous motivational quotes that best depicts this sentiment;

 “I find, when you’re an optimist, life has a funny way of looking after you.”

His TEDTalk, ‘How Great Leaders Inspire Action,” is also a truly inspiring speech and one of the most-watched presentations around the world. Simon Sinek is known for his incredible belief in people, positivity, and strong leadership skills.  I have read all of his books and they are all outstanding. with and great stories, science, and valuable frameworks. All through his years as a keynote speaker, he has explored and uncovered the tenets of outstanding leadership.

Another particular lesson that has inspired me is his teachings around the power of  ‘Why’ in everything you do, especially in building a brand and leading people. I have seen this first hand. People want to work with a company that has a higher purpose. Although many companies might have a higher purpose beyond profit – they don’t involve their people. Without being in our hearts, business is just a transaction.

Learning why you do what you do is the motivation that stays with you even when things get tough. This is important for an individual and also as leaders bringing the team through difficult times. COVID19 has made the power of why more obvious. They call this time the great resignation. People are feeling disconnected and don’t feel connected to the organization and their higher purpose so they leave to find more meaning in their lives. Check out his book Start with Why.


Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins keynote speakerTony Robbins has over forty years of experience as a great motivational speaker. Some say he created this industry. He will tell you he is not a motivational speaker, he is the why guy and a life coach. Nonetheless, he is arguably one of the most famous professional speakers (and one of my greatest influences), delivering motivational speeches, coaching, and hosting seminars to help business leaders and entrepreneurs overcome personal and professional barriers to success. Tony has been driven to better understand why we do what we do. Here is his TED talk on that topic.

There are too many lessons to list here from all that I have learned from Tony. One powerful lesson that has created a heightened awareness in everything I do and is part of me showing up at my best even at the most challenging times is knowing I have control over my thoughts, feelings, and actions. I am motivated also to push past fear that can be at the root of self-sabotage.

As Tony Robbins says, “The one common denominator of all successful people is their hunger to push through their fears. Think of the most influential people in the world, the best athletes, and titans of industry. Are they the smartest people in the world? Not necessarily, but because of their extra self-motivation, they perform in the top percentile of their field.” 

Tony says “success leaves clues” one of the best ways to see success in any area of your life is to follow the example of others. Who do you follow? What have you learned from them in your chosen field and how do you put what you have learned into practice? So here, Tony Robbins teaches you how to create rituals and change your story to be at your best.

I set a goal to work with Tony Robbins and 3 years after I set that goal, I had the great pleasure to be one of his business coaches with Business Breakthroughs (a joint venture he had years ago with Chet Holmes – author of the all-time best-seller The Ultimate Sales Machine.

Check out Tony’s Books Life Force, Awaken The Ginat Within, Money, Unshakable Unlimited Power, and Notes From a Friend. Check out his great motivational speeches on Youtube or better yet attend one live-I promise you will be glad you did.

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela great motivational speakersNelson Mandela is arguably one of the greatest leaders and Top Motivational speakers with peaches that have positively impacted the world over. I reference a story about him in my TEDx that embodies who he is and what he stood for and his empowering presence.

Nelson Mandela was an outspoken critic of apartheid rule in South Africa, politically mobilizing against the inhumane rule which led to his arrest. He spent 27 years in prison as a result.

Upon his release, he helped end apartheid and became the country’s first president in 1990.

Although Mandela died in 2013, his words of wisdom still resonate within us. Many individuals, leaders, and entrepreneurs draw motivation and inspiration from Mandela’s quotes.

Across different countries and languages, Mandela’s motivational words shine a beacon of hope to the downtrodden; his story serves as an inspiration to freedom fighters and marginalized groups and a reminder to the oppressed that the impossible does not exist.

Like Gandhi before him, Mandela was a true advocate of equal rights and a believer that people of all backgrounds should be allowed to maximize their full potential. His story of courage and strong opposition in the face of oppression shows us to date how perseverance can change the world.

One of his most powerful lessons, which reminds me that adversities will always come and it’s up to me to do differently, is this famous words:

Difficulties break some men but make others. No ax is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end”. 

He embodies the passion of the “Why” Simon Sinek talked about with the control over his fear and emotions to bring out the best in himself and those around him, even after his death. Here he carefully explains that obstacles will always be a part of life. It’s up to us to choose how we want to work with them – either by becoming defeated or pushing forward.


Mel Robbins 

Mel Robbins great motivational speakersMel Robbins is a video blogger, CNN commentator, author, entrepreneur, and one of the best motivational speakers across the globe.

Her bestselling book titled 5 Second Rule and High five Habit deeply evaluates the need to push fear aside and take bold, decisive actions instead of dueling on hesitation and overthinking.

When she discovered her ‘5 Second Rule’ strategy, it transformed her life, and she’s now sharing these secrets with millions of people globally. Her story, one that rose from suffering ADD, anxiety, and depression, is incredibly fascinating.

Mel is all about owning and embracing your fears and flaws as they make an essential part of your authentic self. She talks about not pushing them under the carpet, and her personal success story can literally show that she is on the right path. She is so down to earth and shares her own emotional challenges with family, friends, and business.

Here are some of her great motivational quotes to keep you motivated even when nothing else does the job for you:

Start now. Start where you are. Start with fear. Start with pain. Start with doubt. Start with your hands shaking. Just start.” 

“Knowing what you need to do to improve your life takes wisdom. Pushing yourself to do it takes courage.” 

“Pushing yourself to take simple actions creates a chain reaction in your confidence and your productivity.” 

Mel is uplifting while addressing the stress, frustration, and chaos we often have in our lives. She has some simple yet effective strategies to cope regardless of the situation or status in life.

Steve Farber 

Steve Farber great motivational speakersSteve Farber is a business strategy expert, popular keynote speaker, and Inc’s Top 50 Leadership and Management Experts. He is also a friend and fellow faculty member at CEO Space, One of Forbes #5 Business Conferences for many years running.

He is the author of the best-selling books Love is Just Damn Good Business, Greater Than Yourself, The Radical Edge, and The Radical Leap: A Personal Lesson in Extreme Leadership.

His leadership framework, called the ‘LEAP model,’ incredibly detailed in his first book, The Radical Leap, has inspired entrepreneurs across the countries to bring their dreams to reality.

The LEAP model is actually an acronym that stands for “Love,” “Energy,” “Audacity,” and “Proof.”

Therefore, this leadership framework comes from the fact that he sees leadership as more than a label but a personal choice and commitment to change the nature of things while working with others.

One of his famous words that offer a brief overview of this framework is this:

“Leadership is the art of mobilizing others to want to struggle for shared aspirations.”

He talks about remaining conscious of the environment you create and the people you influence while ensuring that you stay true to the values, morals, experiences, and principles that define you. I

n a nutshell, Steve Farber inspires us to value love as a part of leadership. Yes- LOVE. When we show love to ourselves and others -we do great work. His motivational speeches share great stories about great leaders of businesses of all sizes, he shares his personal story and even plays his guitar. He is all heart.

If you want to learn more about Steve Farber’s leadership principles, you can also check our podcast episode with Steve Farber discussing Good leadership.

Brene Brown

Brene Brown motivational speakersBrene Brown is a New York Times best-selling author with over 20+ years as a psychologist, training individuals, entrepreneurs, business leaders, and large audiences the secrets to authenticity, courage, shame, empathy, and vulnerability. She is also a research professor at the University of Houston, Texas, where she spent the past ten years studying courage, shame, authenticity, and vulnerability.

She has over the years discovered fast insights from data, through which she now helps people live fuller and authentic lives.

Her TED Talk, The power of ‘Vulnerability,’ is one of the most viewed motivational talks; it has been viewed 35 million times.  This renowned keynote speech primarily provides important lessons about becoming self-aware, facing our fears, and seeking excellence, instead of perfection.

Here are some other great motivational quotes from Brene Brown that can inspire and drive you to become a better and authentic you.

 “Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we’re all in this together.”

“You are imperfect, you are wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.”

“What’s the greater risk? Letting go of what people think – of letting go of how I feel, what I believe, and who I am?”

I follow her podcasts, they always inspire me with knowledge and insight around topics of psychology and mindset, leadership, and personal growth. She is authentic, personal, and really has a deep curiosity that is infectious.

Read Brenes books: Daring Greatly, Dare to LeadThe Gifts of ImperfectionBraving the Wilderness, Rising Strong, and her newest book Atlas of the Heart

Penny Zenker 

Penny Zenker top motivational speakers in time managementNow that you have seen some of the great speakers who have inspired me, allow me to introduce myself as a motivational speaker.

As a FOCUSOLOGIST, professional female motivational speaker, and author of the best-selling book The Productivity Zone: Stop the Tug of War with Time, I help people see new perspectives; re-focus priorities, reset objectives, reduce stress, and communicate more effectively, enhancing overall performance and productivity.

I teach people how to be a focusologist. Focus is so much more than attention. It’s aligning our intention, attention, and the strategies we use to get there. Focus is the very source of the energy of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and when we learn to control and direct that focus towards a positive meaningful result- we will be happier, healthier, and more resilient and as a byproduct even more productive. Productivity to me is NOT doing more or getting things done -Productivity is doing the right things at the right time.

My goal is to help you create heightened awareness about your focus AND to think act and be more strategic by controlling and directing the energy of your thoughts towards what is most important. I help you see the obstacles more clearly and breakthrough them and the unproductive habits and be your best self in every area of your life.

Check out my website.  Check out my podcast: Take Back Time

“Progress is Perfection” , 

“We are not seeking balance in our lives, we are seeking meaning and when we find it”

“Time never was and never will be a driver of productivity”, “

The secret to our happiness and productivity is in the art of letting go”

“The first available solution isn’t always the best solution”



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