Recently, my friend Kyle Wilson invited me to join an inmate group in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., and spend two days with the effervescent Dr. Denis Waitley.

This experience has been the highlight of the year for me. Dr. Waitley is 89 years young and the author of the best-selling book, The Psychology of Winning. He attended the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md., and is the former chairman of psychology for the United States Olympic Committee’s Sports Medicine Council.

In this photo with me is Dr. Denis Waitley and Kyle Wilson.

I feverishly took notes as wisdom flowed out of him like a running facet.

  1. Take care of your family. Make them a priority above business, hobbies, and friends. They are the wind beneath your wings.
  2. Chase passion instead of chasing cash flow. If you pursue what makes you come alive, then money will chase you. Yes, it’s counterintuitive but pays off tremendous dividends in the future.
  3. Treat everyone with equal respect. Today people are judged by ethnicity, sexual orientation, religious preference, political affiliation, and gender. When treated with respect they are seen as a human being. Their life matters the same as your life.
  4. Focus on the recipient. Whenever you are talking to someone, make them the most important person in the room. Dr. Denis had the uncanny ability to make me feel as if I was the only person in the room when he talked with me.
  5. Investigate before you motivate. Read the tea leaves. Listen more and talk less. What is the current emotional temperature in any environment? Your words may just be the healing balm that is needed.
  6. Check the source. Just because it’s on the internet doesn’t mean it’s necessarily true. One of the most popular courses being taught in universities is Media Literacy.
  7. Be a personal example. People learn how to lead based on how they have been led. What do you model in e-mails, phone calls, virtual meetings, and face-to-face meetings? In the words of speaker and consultant Dennis Snow, everything speaks.

While I was at this extraordinary gathering, I received a gift from my good friend Wagner Nolasco. It was a simple T-shirt with a powerful statement – TAKE ACTION.

Dr. Denis Waitley and Wagner Nolasco

Today, I invite you to take action on one of Dr. Denis Waitley’s insights.