We’ve all heard the saying “we’re the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with”. Most of us in our heart of hearts know it’s true, but are we being intentional about our environment? Being deliberate about the people we spend the most time with? If you haven’t, then lets discover why this is one of the best life changing decisions you can ever make on your road to success.
First let’s talk about why our environment and especially the people we choose to be surrounded by, matter so much. Our minds are like a computer and the things we put in our minds are like the programs that run our computer. So our inputs (such as TV, Radio, Social Media, Conversations & Internet), are what we put in our minds, will determine our thoughts and what we think about most. Our THOUGHTS will then cause our ACTIONS and our actions will then produce our EVENTS. These events will then produces our RESULTS and the results we produce will then determine whether we succeed or fail in life (stay with me here). So if we put a program with a virus in our computer then our computer won't function the way it is supposed to. Another way to look at it is if a tree is contaminated, you won’t start by treating the branches, you start by treating the roots. In the same way our minds are our roots so we must start from there. Our environment will determine our inputs and the people we surround ourselves with will determine the conversations we have. If we have bad stuff dumped into our minds then we won’t function the way we’re supposed to. We must be deliberate about who we allow to enter our lives and intentionally choose the environment we’re in. So take a look at the people you’re around, listen to the conversations you’re having and ask yourself these questions.
· What are the people I’m surrounded by have me saying?
· What do they have me thinking?
· What do they have me watching?
· What is our conversation about?
Let’s explore this some more. We’ve all been guilty of hanging with our friends and after some time spent with them, we unconsciously take on their language. Come on, you know what I mean. The longer you spend with someone the more likely you’ll take on their phrases, their slangs and their sense of humor. You’re also likely to hear yourself talking like them. In the same sense, your friends are likely to take on your language, phrases, slang and humor as well. Typically it’ll be a blend of humor between the two. So unconsciously we have taken on their thoughts and language. This is why choosing our environment is essential to controlling our destiny. You want to take on the characteristics or language of the people you intentionally allow in your life. People who are hopefully playing at a higher level then you.
Side note: Its been said that the wealthy talk about ideas and the poor talk about people.
This brings me to another point, if you choose to be surrounded by people playing at the same level as you or below, then you will never feel the need to grow. You will feel comfortable where you’re at because the people you’re surrounded by are doing the same as you. In some cases you might even feel better because you might be doing better than the people you’re surrounded by. This of course is a horrible way of thinking, if you are doing better or the same as those around you, then you will never feel the need to stretch.
Now let’s imagine the opposite, lets imagine that you’re surrounded by people doing much better than you. That would cause you intense pain since you’re not playing at the same level as them and as a result force you to step up. A basketball player for instance, must play with players better than them if they want to improve their game and play at a higher level; and the same is true in life! Another reason to step up when surrounded by people playing at a higher level, is that if we don’t step up, they might not even want to be around us! This forces you to do better and stretch.
Another factor to consider is Motivation. When surrounded by people playing at a higher level in life, you will eventually think to yourself “we’re friends, if they can do it why can't I?”.
As we close, I hope this article pushes you in the direction to intentionally choose your environment; it could be the single best decision you ever make. Don’t worry if you don’t have the connections now, work on it bit by bit, weed out the friends that aren’t moving you in the right direction and allow new ones to enter.
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