Top 7 Influencers To Follow If You Need a Life Reset in 2018

By Ann Sharpsteen

Contemplating a life reset or wanting to make an important change in your life can sometimes be overwhelming, especially when you don't know how or where to begin.  

So, to inspire you on your journey moving forward, regardless of what your reset looks like, here are (in my opinion) the top 7 influencers you should be following if you want to affect positive change in your life in 2018.  These are the people who have had the most influence on me in the past few years.  I promise you, you will be inspired if you check out what they have to say.  And, (added bonus!) a lot of their material is free online (I'll share where to find the best free stuff), so you can get a taste of what they offer before buying any of their books, etc.



I can't get enough of Brene Brown, can I just say that?  She writes and speaks on topics of vulnerability, courage, authenticity, and shame - huge topics of healing and self-improvement in my own life in the last couple years.  Every Ted talk I've watched of hers, every book of hers I've read, and every video I've seen in which she has spoken have all resonated with me on so many levels.  Quite simply, she's the cool-headed friend who makes the messy and complicated seem easy to navigate and she inspires me to live life fearlessly.

I loved hearing the story of her very first Ted talk (it's a must watch, by the way - check it out here: TEDxHouston "The Power of Vulnerability").  She did the talk and then later worried aloud to a friend how embarrassed she was with her performance and how scared she was that her talk might possibly be uploaded online to where “up to 500 people” might see it - ha!  Well, the video WAS uploaded and it went viral. Today more than 32 million people have watched it.  

Definitely check out her Ted talks on YouTube (links below), as well as interviews with Oprah on YouTube (I love all of those - you will, too!).  And, connect with her on Twitter (@BreneBrown),  Facebook (, and on her website ( but by far you will get the most from her books!  I recommend starting with Rising Strong.  By the way, if you make any purchases of books or products by clicking through one of the links in this post, I earn a commission just so you know.

Brene's must-watch Ted talks:
TEDxHouston: The Power of Vulnerability
TED2012: Listening to Shame

Her best books:

My favorite Brene Brown quotes:

"The middle is messy, but it's also where the magic happens." ~ Brene Brown

"Vulnerability is about showing up and being seen. It's tough to do that when we're terrified about what people might see or think." ~ Brene Brown



You surely have been living under a rock or have zero interest in self-improvement if you've never heard of Tony Robbins.  He's the best... really, really fantastic if you're looking to work on yourself.  I can't tell you how many hours I have spent mowing and exercising, driving, cooking, cleaning and more while listening to his audio CDs.  A few years ago I spent a crazy amount of money buying as many of his self-improvement audio courses that I could, and I have since devoured them again and again.  They are THAT good.  He simply has the best advice and outlook on making changes in your life.  

He's an author, entrepreneur, and life coach who is known for his self-help books and seminars.  They say something like 50 million people have benefited from his teachings. I consider him to THE rockstar top-dog motivational speaker of all (although he shuns the label, "motivational speaker").   I also had the honor of working with him and interviewing him a few years ago, too.  I will never forget what I learned from him during that time... amazing man!

So, what you need to know about Tony is he's a "Why" guy.  WHY do you do what you do?  Why do you do what you DON'T want to do?  Why does your partner DO what he/she does?  He takes a serious deep dive into human decision-making and how we can make changes to better our lives through changing our actions.  It might sound a little woo-woo at a high level to some, but his courses and programs are fantastic!  

If you subscribe to NETFLIX, check out his special available on Netflix called "I Am Not Your Guru - Tony Robbins." That will give you a flavor of what he offers.  Also, there are tons of (free) Tony Robbins videos on YouTube... simply go to YouTube and search "Tony Robbins."  There are hours and hours of videos to watch... great stuff.

You can also subscribe to his free podcast... link below.  I don't listen to the podcast myself.  I prefer to listen to his courses that I have uploaded on my iTunes (Lessons in Mastery & Live With Passion), and the course I'm working on now is this one (a 10-day audio course called "Creating Lasting Change"): 

My favorite Tony Robbins quotes:

“The path to success is to take massive, determined action.” ~ Tony Robbins

“Nothing has any power over me other than that which I give it through my conscious thoughts.” ~ Tony Robbins



If you haven't heard of Cliff Ravenscraft yet and you're into self-improvement, trust me you will be hearing a lot about this man in 2018.  He's quickly becoming the most sought-after personal improvement & business coach out there.  I have to admit he has done more to inspire me in  making positive change in my life this past year than probably all of the influencers in this article combined... in areas of health & wellness, my business, personal growth, all of it.

What I love about Cliff is he is real and authentic and while he is all about results and making hard progress and making hard changes, he is completely relatable.  He offers practical advice on "doing life" and growing and improving, but he doesn't do it in a Tony Robbins Mach-3 level "attack at 5000-RPM" kind of approach.  Some days I don’t want to examine the reasons WHY people do what they do, or how my life conditions don't match my blueprint, or what new "empowering alternatives" I can create for myself.  I'm just trying to make it through the day... baby steps.  Sometimes I want a bag of Double Milanos, a blanket and my pillow.  I want balance. Something tells me if I told Cliff I was having that kind of day, he wouldn't crucify me.  He feels infinitely more relatable than Tony Robbins on those days (sorry, Tony).  Quite simply, Cliff inspires me to be a better person, mom, friend, and business owner and enjoy the journey along the way (sigh). :-)

To get a taste of what he's all about, check out Cliff Ravenscraft's YouTube channel.  You will hear his take on how to deal with self doubt, staying focused, saying "no" and lots of other topics.  He used to focus on helping people launch their own podcasts (hence his nickname, the "Podcast Answer Man"), but has since made the decided shift to helping people take their lives to the next levels (and growing their businesses). 

Also, mark your calendar for an upcoming "Free the Dream" self-improvement conference he will be hosting in Nashville TN September 7th, 8th & 9th 2018.  Sign up here to receive more info on that, as it becomes available.  I will be there, for sure.

My favorite Cliff Ravenscraft quotes:

"I don't need easy. I just need worth it." ~ Cliff Ravenscraft
"Do something or be someone worth talking about." ~ Cliff Ravenscraft



Simply said, Hal Elrod's  book,The Miracle Morning, will kickstart your life.  Get it, read it, establish a new morning routine and get on with your life.  (I will add, I think it's also important to have an evening routine... as the thoughts and things you do before bed set you up for a good night's rest, or a not-so-good night's rest!) 

My favorite Hal Elrod quotes:

“Remember, the moment you accept total responsibility for everything in your life is the moment you claim the power to change anything in your life.” ~ Hal Elrod

“How you wake up each day and your morning routine (or lack thereof) dramatically affects your levels of success in every single area of your life. Focused, productive, successful mornings generate focused, productive, successful days—which inevitably create a successful life—in the same way that unfocused, unproductive, and mediocre mornings generate unfocused, unproductive, and mediocre days, and ultimately a mediocre quality of life.” ~ Hal Elrod

#5 - WAYNE DYER (1940-2015)


Wayne Dyer has taught me most everything I know about how our thoughts control our lives and manifest what we want (and don't want) in our lives.  If I were you, I would subscribe today to his podcast and start listening.  And, listen to anything you can find on YouTube of him speaking or his PBS specials.  He's wonderful, and although he passed two years ago I'm grateful we still have his talks to listen to. 

My favorite Wayne Dyer quotes:

"If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." ~ Wayne Dyer

"Abundance is not something we acquire. It is something we tune into." ~ Wayne Dyer



My favorite Ted talk of all time is hands-down Anita Moorjani's talk at TEDxBayArea "Dying to Be Me."  After I watched this Ted talk, I started following Anita on Facebook and elsewhere and read her book by the same name, Dying to Be Me.  I love the lessons that she teaches:  we are all connected to one another, we are all love, our internal life & dialogue are the keys to happiness, the outer world is distracting and not something we should react to, and if we are at peace, then the world will reflect that back to us.

Be sure to watch the Ted talk and hear her story of almost dying, seeing the "other side" and coming back to share what she learned.  Everyone I have shared this link with has loved it.

My favorite Anita Moorjani quotes:

"Transform your world by transforming your internal state. Start by learning to let go of negative self judgment, and replace it with positive and loving thoughts about yourself. Be kind to yourself, and watch your external world change." ~ Anita Moorjani

"Your only purpose is to be yourself, otherwise you deprive the universe of who you came here to be." ~ Anita Moorjani



Honestly, Billy Graham should #1 at the top of this list of influencers, now that I think about it. :-)

You know how when you're hurting and sick and need nourishing comfort food, rest and an assurance that you're doing the right thing?  That's what Billy Graham has always been to me.  When I need healing, am at loss as to what to do, or am feeling hopeless, he's always been my go-to source for trustworthy, wholesome nourishing sustenance.  Even as a parent, I remember one occasion with my son (when he was probably about 10 years old) and sitting him down in front of my laptop and playing a Billy Graham sermon for him after he misbehaved.  Billy Graham was my last resort that day - ha!

As we all know, Billy Graham has preached the message of Christ’s forgiveness and redemption for years and he's known for being a kind and non-judgmental man. We need more men like that. My best advice for getting some BG wisdom quickly is to simply go to YouTube and search "Billy Graham sermons"... hours of good stuff!

Some of my favorite Billy Graham quotes:

"Being a Christian is more than just an instantaneous conversion - it is a daily process whereby you grow to be more and more like Christ." ~ Billy Graham

"God will prepare everything for our perfect happiness in heaven, and if it takes my dog being there, I believe he'll be there." ~ Billy Graham


Ann Sharpsteen