Surround Yourself With Greatness

Apr 19, 2022

Whomever you hang around with, directly reflects who you are and what you value.  How so?  When you are growing up, you are surrounded by your parents and other immediate family members and friends.  You begin picking up on their habits and values and begin establishing between right and wrong.  Once you go to school, you are opened to classmates and teachers, whom most likely live differently than you.  You begin to notice their values and begin adopting a new perspective, and occasionally, a new “word.” You know what I’m talking about. We’ve been accustomed to how are parents act, that when we see someone else acting different, we either establish it as wrong or we like it and add it to our personality.  

This phenomena happens throughout your lifetime, not just when you are younger and developing at a rapid pace.  Once you are an adult, you are still developing.  The difference is, you have more control over who is in your life and who is not.  You decide who surrounds you and who is in your inner circle, which is a direct reflection of you.

Think about who you have in your inner circle right now.  Who are your 5 closest friends or family?  What do they value?  Do you value the same thing?

The best inner circles have a way of helping you level up and become the best version of you.  This isn’t done by comparing each other, but you all add value to one another.  

Consider this

You are working on improving your fitness and you have been targeting your cardio.  You are currently running a 24 minute pace, but your goal is 18 minutes.  Who would you rather hang around: People who are running 26 minutes and you’re the fastest, or 20 minute runners and you’re the slowest?  The slower group may make you feel good in the moment, but the faster group is what’s going to help you reach your goal.  

These are the choices you get to make.  Who are you surrounded with?

Imagine you aspire to be professional at all times and you believe that words mean things.  You go to work and the people you work with don’t share those values, in fact they want you to change those habits and values that you hold so dear.  They begin pushing your buttons, hoping you’ll slip.  Is that who you want to hang around with?  Change is inevitable, but you want that to be forward change, not backward.

If you hang around people who go to the mall regularly to spend money they don’t have and you are always with them,  then you might pick up similar spending habits.  If you are around people who invest in the stock market or crypto currency, then, again, you may pick up their savings habits.  If you hang around 5 other millionaires, then you will be the 6th.  If you hang around 5 negative people, then you will be the 6th.

Sometimes it can be very difficult to find that person or that group that helps you take it to the next level of greatness.  If you are someone who wants to get involved in real estate, there’s a good chance that your immediate circle doesn’t have the answers to help you on the journey.  That doesn’t mean throw your circle away or kick people out, it means that you need to find someone to add.  Find a mentor, a coach or a group that could help you.  

In 1936, a psychologist named Kurt Lewin came up with a well-known equation that explains this phenomenon: B= f (P,E).  This means behavior is a function of the person, which includes their history, personality and motivation and their environment to include both physical and social environment. (Lewin's Behavior Equation: A Simple Model of Human Behavior).

For example, when my family and went to Japan, I immediately immersed myself in the culture to include talking with an accent any time I talked to the Japanese taxi driver.  I didn’t realize this until my wife pointed it out.  I didn’t mean to do that.  My behavior changed because of who was in my environment. 

There are a lot of people out there that have similar mindsets as you, you just need to look for them.  

But it’s a symbiotic relationship.  You can find ways to spread your knowledge and your value to other people.  Network.  Networking was one of the first important words I learned as a young leader.  You will not know the answer to every question, but you need to know where to find it or who can help.  Who’s a subject matter expert in a field you want to get involved with.  What are you a subject matter expert in?

What if I don't have anyone?

Here’s some more food for thought:  what if you were surrounded by…no one?  What if you were isolated from most people and because of that, you don’t have an inner circle?

This is a very different situation, but it is still very important to address.  

It’s great to be able to have some alone time and focus on yourself and understand your thoughts; however, you shouldn’t be alone for great periods of time.  

Research has shown that lack of social interactions for extended periods of time have negative effects on mental health by increasing chances of suicide, depression and has also lowered mortality.  (Frontiers in Psychology)

Even if you are an introvert, human interaction is a must.  You can find many social groups that can help you level up and share the same values as you.

Look at who you surround yourself with and make the changes as necessary.  It can be difficult to remove people from your life, but sometimes it’s what’s missing from taking the next step forward.  

Who do you want to surround yourself with?

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