For many years, I lived by the belief that how smart and talented I was, would be the single, most important factor in determining my level of success in life.
The grades I thought I had to achieve through sacrificing nights, weekends and holidays for. Having to consistently be regarded as one of the top performers in my class. And, how there had to be mastery of all subjects studied, regardless of interest.
Now, I’m not saying that these accomplishments were of no use at all. In fact, I’m incredibly grateful for all the opportunities and lessons, which I’ve received from the pursuit of academic excellence.
From entering adolescence, to hunting down my first job while at university, it has allowed me to understand that hard work and perseverance are essential ingredients to getting what you want out of life. They are the catalysts that help turn visions into reality.
What hit me over time however, and particularly in the last few years, is the fact that our success in life more often than not comes down to the people we choose to spend our time with.
How smart you are.
How talented you are.
Where you were born.
The family environment you grew up in.
These may all play some role as to how successful you will be in life, but in comparison to the impact of surrounding yourself with people who can lift you higher, it doesn’t compare.
An individual maybe born into riches but live an unhappy life, while someone from more humble beginnings maybe able to manifest their dreams in record breaking time. All because of the company they keep, which influences their way of thinking and thus resulting in a mindset for success.
Our habits determine the person we become. Environment optimisation is an important one that can have a profound impact on your well-being.
Want to be successful? Surround yourself with successful people.
Want to be happy? Surround yourself with happy people.
Want to be healthy? Surround yourself with healthy people.
Want to become more confident? Surround yourself with confident people.
In essence, we become more like the people we hang out with.
It’s like what Jim Rohn tells us: “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
Take a moment to reflect on the following: Who are the people you spend most time with? Do they elevate you or bring you down? Are they proactive go-getters exhibiting qualities that you admire or people who just sit and criticise? Do they motivate or drain you?
The awesome thing about being around positive minded individuals, who have a habit of chasing their dreams and believe in taking responsibility for their lives, is that you’ll be inclined to grow in a positive direction as well.
They will have an impact on your thinking and consequently your behaviour. They will support you on your journey and move you towards inspired action.
Maximise the amount of time you spend with these people!
“Associate only with positive, focused people who you can learn from and who will not drain your valuable energy with uninspiring attitudes. By developing relationships with those committed to constant improvement and the pursuit of the best that life has to offer, you will have plenty of company on your path to the top of whatever mountain you seek to climb.” – Robin Sharma
The amazing thing about where we are today in terms of technology, means that you can literally surround yourself with inspiring people (e.g. through Twitter, Facebook and audio books). As a result, I’ve put together a few ideas including these more modern methods, on how you can begin creating a more optimal environment for your personal growth and success:
- Attend events in your local town/city that appeal to your interests, can help you learn something useful, or arouse your curiosity. Make sure to bring your business cards with you!
- Seek out people who have skills/qualities that you admire and learn from them. Never assume that they have nothing to learn from you. We can always learn something from someone, regardless of where they are in their own life.
- Minimise the time you spend hanging out with the wrong crowd and unhealthy influences, e.g. pessimists and those that can hurt your chances of achieving success.
- Read more. Books, blogs, etc. You will be exposed to inspiring success stories, expand your library of knowledge and nurture your creative thinking.
- Listen to audiobooks/podcasts when you are commuting and/or relaxing.
- Follow inspirational people and those who you can learn from on social media channels.
- Subscribe to newsletters, which will add value to your life and help you towards your goals in life.
- Keep perspective. While it’s important to spend your time with those who are more successful than you, it is also great for your development to be around those who are at the same stage as you (so ideas and the journey can be shared) and those below you, who you can inspire and share your wisdom with.
- Spend less time in front of the TV and your smartphone, and more time getting out there and connecting with people. You just never know what it might lead to!
As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the above and how you’ve benefited from both the power of relationships and a supportive environment.
Have your say
I’ve a small confession to make. Running machines and I have never been the best of friends! In fact, I used to...
Sometimes we don’t know how we’re going to get to where we want to be. Sometimes we don’t know...