Denis Waitley


Denis Waitley is  one of the most famous American motivational speakers, authors, keynote lecturers and productivity consultants; with over 10 million audio programs sold in 14 languages, Denis Waitley is probably the most-listened-to-voice on personal and career achievement.

Life and Career

Denis Waitley was born in 1933. He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, and holds a doctorate degree in human behavior.

His career as a professional motivational coach and productivity consultants began over 25 years ago, and includes working with multi-national corporations, world-class athletes and thousands of conventioneers. During the 1980’s, he served as Chairman of Psychology on the U. S. Olympic Committee’s Sports Medicine Council, which is responsible for performance enhancement of all U. S. Olympic athletes.

According to his official website, he has “studied and counseled winners in every field from Apollo astronauts to Superbowl champions, from sales achievers to government leaders and youth groups”.

He worked with returning Vietnam POW’s and Iranian hostages, as a motivator for Superbowl Champions, with students in in over 1,000 schools nationwide in “The Winning Generation” workshop, and with many more groups and individuals.

Waitley is a founding director of the National Council on Self-Esteem and the President’s Council on Vocational Education.

He lives in Ensenada, Mexico.

Teachings and Philosophy

Waitley says: “I attribute much of my own success to my internalization of The Law of Attraction, Thinking and Acting in a Certain Way, The Impression of Increase, and Gratitude” – which are the core values in Wallace Wattles‘ book, The Science of Getting Rich (1910) that Waitley greatly appreciates.

He believes that we have to be able to use our ability to visualize before we actually perform what we are about to do. In 1984 he began using his idea for creative visualization with Olympic athletes. He outlined how to form and really use visualization as a tool for success in his book, The Psychology of Winning, and this quote of his is a famous one:

When you visualize then you materialize. If you’ve been there in the mind you’ll go there in the body.

Here’s how he explains the process with the Olympic athletes:

We took Olympic athletes and had the run their event only in their mind, and then hooked them up to sophisticated biofeedback equipment. Incredibly, the same muscles fired in the same sequence when they were running the race in their mind as when they were running it on the track. How could this be? Because the mind can’t distinguish whether you’re really doing it or whether it’s just a practice. If you’ve been there in your mind you’ll go there in the body.

According to Waitley, a person should find alternatives in reaching his/her goal – instead of making constant excuses, we should be proactive in pursuing our goals. He believes that success starts in the mind, and those who believe that success is just on the end of their fingertips, find it in their hands very fast if they take action quickly.

And he lives what he preaches: he is well known for his actions and the initiative that he possesses, that eventually lead him to success.

He believes that failure is a great tool for success, and that it’s important that we persevere in our actions – to stay on the course and not be derailed, because sometimes when we are the closest to failing we are also on the threshold of success. That’s why successful people are comfortable with failure:

Failure is fertilizer – it stinks, but it surely grows green people!


Apart from his hundreds of audio lectures, Waitley is the author of 16 books:

  • The Psychology of Winning
  • Seeds of Greatness: The Ten Best-kept Secrets of Total Success
  • New Dynamics of Winning: Gain the Mind-Set of a Champion for Unlimited Success in Business and Life
  • The Dragon And The Eagle
  • Safari to the Soul
  • The Seeds of Greatness Treasury
  • The Psychology of Winning for Women
  • Being the Best
  • The Winners Edge: The Critical Attitude of Success
  • The Joy of Working
  • The New Dynamics of Goal Setting: Flextactics for a Fast-changing World
  • Psychology of Success: Developing Your Self-esteem
  • Quantum Fitness: Breakthrough to Excellence
  • Empires of the Mind: Lessons to Lead and Succeed in a Knowledge-based World


Change the changeable, accept the unchangeable, and remove yourself from the unacceptable.

Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.

There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them.

Virtually nothing on earth can stop a person with a positive attitude who has his goal clearly in sight.

In the short video below Denis Waitley is talking about why now is the best time to be alive in history:

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