Best inspirational speakers

There’s nothing like sitting in an auditorium with hundreds of like-minded people, absorbing the words of a powerful speaker. If you’ve ever heard Tony Robbins speak in person at one of his events, you know what a profound experience it can be.

There are thousands of inspirational speakers in the world and you can learn from them through in-person symposiums or events as well as through podcasts, videos, and audiobooks.

Ready to take your business to the next level?

Download the 7 forces of Business Mastery
What is an inspirational speaker?

Though famous inspirational speakers travel the globe and have a profound effect on those who listen to them, they are not to be confused with motivational speakers. Motivational speakers make their living by talking to audiences about large-scale issues such as increasing sales, creating personal development plans or taking steps toward more effective leadership. Inspirational speakers are those who have learned life lessons through their careers or unique circumstances and want to pass that information on to others. The best inspirational speakers share their personal stories and then let the audience draw their own conclusions. Motivational speakers, on the other hand, layout plans for their listeners to incorporate change into their own lives.

Another key difference between motivational and inspirational speakers is the “call to action,” so to speak. Motivational speakers help their listeners change or improve upon a certain behavior while Inspirational speakers want to influence others by evoking feelings of awe and wonder. Inspiration leads to influence, and the best inspirational speakers are those who use empathy and other soft skills to affect listeners at their root: their thoughts and feelings. While a motivational speaker can help you develop successful habits or processes, an inspirational speaker can alter the way you perceive the world and those around you, leading to a lifelong change.

Both motivational and inspirational speakers play a part in feeding your mind with positive information. By listening to just 20-30 minutes of inspirational speaking a day and having some impactful inspirational speaker quotes at your disposal, you can increase your success and create a more fulfilling life. You can take that a step further by finding books by speakers you are especially touched by, attending their seminars or other events where they are featured or by learning more on their websites.

Here are some of Tony’s favorite inspirational speakers and what you can learn from them alongside some inspirational speaker quotes from each individual that you can use for a quick boost.

Brene Brown

A public speaker and renowned researcher on human behavior regarding shame, Brene Brown shook up the world when she gave her TED Talk on the power of vulnerability. Whether you want to harness the power of vulnerability in your personal relationships or in business, listening to Brene Brown’s authentic and heartfelt presentations are well worth the time investment. Her humor and down-to-earth Texas mannerisms paired with her unique research on shame make her one of the best inspirational speakers for those who want to forge deeper connections with those they have close relationships with.

Brene Brown inspirational speakers

Brene Brown quotes:

“You either walk inside your story and own it or you stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness.”

“I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness – it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude.”

“Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome.”

Siri Lindley

Siri Lindley inspirational speakers

Siri Lindley is a former triathlete and a current triathlon coach. She uses her experiences in the sports world to speak to others about living a big life and getting clear on their goals so they can achieve their dreams. In addition to speaking about training herself and others to compete in world-class events, she also shares her very personal stories of fear and feelings of not being good enough. In a podcast with Tony Robbins, she explains how she finally came to the conclusion that being a human was far more important than being an athlete and how this changed her entire mindset. She is one of the famous inspirational speakers Tony often works with and she never fails to ignite an audience.


Siri Lindley quotes:

“My philosophy is that your biggest competitor is yourself. I will never ask the impossible. But I will come close.” 

“It’s hard (and usually uncomfortable) work breaking through old barriers and self-defeating thought patterns to see meaningful progress, and fear is an absolutely natural response, but you can’t let it become a limiter.”

“Don’t let your shame or embarrassment outweigh your goals and your dreams.”

Joseph McClendon III

Another one of Tony’s favorite inspirational speakers that he often works with, Joseph McClendon III is a powerful coach and motivator with extensive experience in the neurosciences and how people process information. His story includes seven years of teaching neuroscience at UCLA where he came up with his unique brand of teaching and coaching, “Tell, Show, Do.” His electrifying talks help listeners create rapid personal change and growth and find ways they can go further faster in their personal and professional lives.


Joseph McClendon III inspirational speakers

Joseph McClendon III quotes:

“Without one’s health, well-being and happiness, there is no real quality of life.”

“Fortune favors the bold and life is exactly what you dare to make it. So, let’s boldly dare to make your life magnificent!” 

“The fact of the matter is anything that is more than the average that is worth attaining will usually carry with it a level of discomfort in terms of hard work or discipline.” 

Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai inspirational speakers

A Pakistani activist for young women and the youngest person to ever receive the Nobel Peace Prize, Malala Yousafzai is one of the most famous inspirational speakers in the world. After writing a blog anonymously about living under Taliban rule, she was shot on a bus in a failed assassination attempt. She survived the attempt and became an international inspirational speaker and was dubbed the “most famous teenager in the world.” Though the main topic she speaks about is promoting education for young girls, everyone can learn something from this truly remarkable person.


Malala Yousafzai quotes:

“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.”

“When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.”

“Kindness can only be repaid with kindness. It can’t be repaid with expressions like ‘thank you.’”

Scott Harris

Known as the “Millionaire Mentor,” Scott Harris is a renowned inspirational speaker who hails from Australia. He speaks on topics such as creating massive shifts in people, instigating lasting change and improving health and wellness. A former elite ironman with a wide range of experience and interests, Scott is a lifelong learner who has coached others around the world for over 20 years. Scott has been an audience favorite every time he’s appeared with Tony and remains one of the best inspirational speakers Tony has ever partnered with.


Scott Harris inspirational speakers

Scott Harris quotes:

“Look to be not ordinary, but extraordinary!”

“Practice doesn’t make perfect – it makes permanent. What makes perfect is perfect practice. Going out and buying golf clubs, and then going to a golf course, is the most stupid thing someone can do. Unless you have some lessons first, you could be perfecting for six months how to swing the club badly every time – this is not a good outcome and will ensure you give up.”

“Live deliberately, live on purpose and live like it matters”

Mark Divine

Mark Divine inspirational speakers

When it comes to famous inspirational speakers, it’s hard to do better than learning from one of the most successful Navy SEALS in history. Mark Divine, who retired from the SEALS in 2011, has coached elite soldiers, built multi-million dollar companies and created unparalleled training systems. He speaks on team building, physical fitness and how to have an unbeatable mind. He uses his experiences in active and reserve duty with the military to illustrate how laughter and intuition are often the most powerful tools at your disposal and how they can lead to deep bonds and unprecedented perseverance.


Mark Divine quotes:

“To live an uncommon life, one needs to learn uncommon disciplines.”

“When you bring your full attention to each moment, a day is a complete lifetime of living and learning.”

“For every mountain you climb and plateau you rest at, there will be another and more interesting view ahead.”

Seth Godin

Seth is a former dot-com entrepreneur and the highly successful author of marketing books such as The Purple Cow and Linchpin. His theories on how ideas are spread and how to gain the respect of your clients and customers are groundbreaking and have made him one of the most entertaining and famous inspirational speakers in the nation. Though his information is more useful for business owners and entrepreneurs who want to take marketing to the next level and increase profits, his talks are still highly engaging, educational and have plenty of “ah-ha!” moments.

Inspirational speakers

Seth Godin quotes:

“How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy to be remarkable?”

“The easiest thing is to react. The second easiest thing is to respond. But the hardest thing is to initiate.”

“The art of moving forward lies in understanding what to leave behind.”

Cloe Madanes

Cloe Madanes inspirational speakers

Cloe is an inspirational speaker who has teamed up with Tony since 2002 to develop strategic interventions for families and communities experiencing conflict or violence. She is the co-founder of the Council for the Human Rights of Children and speaks on raising healthy children and creating cohesive families. Not only is she one of the most famous inspirational speakers in the area of child development, she is also the author of eight books and has successfully counseled thousands of people with her patented strategic family therapy approach.


Cloe Madanes quotes:

“Psychotherapy is the art of finding the angel of hope in the midst of terror, despair and madness.”

“And most of all, you must be brave enough to provide the spark that bridges the gap between limitations and possibilities, knowing that there’s a great deal to human beings, so a great deal can be made out of them.”

“The more complicated the problem the simpler the solution you want to use.”

Les Brown

Born into poverty, given up for adoption and taken in by a single mother, Les Brown was declared “educably mentally retarded” when he was in grade school. That didn’t stop him from exploring his full potential and becoming one of the most famous inspirational speakers on the topics of believing in yourself and not allowing others to determine who you are or what you will be. He advocates setting high goals and achieving them by being bold and having supreme self-confidence.


Les Brown inspirational speakers

Les Brown quotes:

“Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you become your reality.”

“We must look for ways to be an active force in our own lives. We must take charge of our own destinies, design a life of substance and truly begin to live our dreams.”

“The only limits to the possibilities of tomorrow are the buts you use today.”

Nick Vujicic

Born with no arms and no legs, it would have been easy for Nick Vujucic to become bitter. Instead, he chose to live in absolute abundance and has become one of the most inspiring speakers in the world. Nick founded a non-profit organization called Life Without Limbs and speaks on gratitude and focusing on what you can control. He travels around the world and has spoken to students, business professionals and church congregations of all sizes. In addition to being a renowned speaker, he is also a passionate author, musician and actor and spends his free time fishing, painting and swimming. His message of resilience and positivity resonates with all who hear it.


Nick Vujicic inspirational speakers

Nick Vujicic quotes:

“If you can’t get a miracle, become one.”

“I never met a bitter person who was thankful. Or a thankful person who was bitter.”

“I encourage you to accept that you may not be able to see a path right now, but that doesn’t mean it’s not there.”

If listening is one of your top learning styles, hearing famous inspirational speakers either in person or on a recording is incredibly valuable. It can help drive you to learn more and increase your knowledge about topics you are interested in. Tony works with a number of inspirational speakers and often features them on his podcasts. This is a great way to discover new speakers and find out which ones touch your heart and encourage you to live an inspired life.

Ready to take your business to unreached levels?

Discover how to conquer inspirational speaking with Tony Robbins’ 7 Forces of Business Mastery free content series.