Surround Yourself with Positive Influences

Surround Yourself with Positive Influences

Have you ever considered the impact the people around you have on who YOU are?

Entrepreneur, motivational speaker, and author Jim Rohn once said, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.”

Another popular expression of this idea is, “Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future”.

These statements suggest that our lives as an individual are heavily influenced by our relationships with others. When you think about it, it’s not really that surprising.

And we’re not just talking about what you do with your free time or where you go.

Your habits, the way you think, your confidence, your goals, and your motivations. While these might seem like this is all based on you, who you spend your time with impacts these significantly.

As a follower of this page, it’s likely you’re the kind of person that wants to grow and develop, becoming the best version of yourself. If the people around you are doing the same, that’s massive for motivation, strategy, and positive reinforcement.     

But what if they’re not? What if you have a couple of friends from your past that have no interest in growth. What if they put you down and hold you back? Are they the type of people that sit around and criticise others?

Perhaps their habits don’t align with yours. Did you know you are 61% more likely to smoke if your best friend smokes? Data has also shown that if your friend gets obese, you are 45% more likely to gain weight over the next 2 years(1,2).

While this isn’t the be all and end all for who you are, the influence others have over you is multifaceted and undeniable.

Your friends can make you powerful. Energised. Driven. Happy. Confident.

They can also make you more negative. Exhausted. Unhappy. Unhealthy. Insecure.

So think about it. Here’s some ideas to consider.

How are you spending your time, and who are you spending it with? Seek out people who inspire you and motivate you. Are these people living the life that you want to live?

Could you be spending less time with people that hold you back? Are these people living a life you don’t want?

Are you exposing yourself to other positive influences? That might be podcasts, reading or other forms of educational material.
Remember, it’s not only about the people you're friends with, but the information you are regularly exposed to.

So, take stock of your own life and consider the power relationships and a supportive environment have when allocating your time.

Christakis, N. and Fowler, J., 2007. The Spread of Obesity in a Large Social Network over 32 Years. New England Journal of Medicine, 357(4), pp.370-379.
Christakis, N. and Fowler, J., 2008. The Collective Dynamics of Smoking in a Large Social Network. New England Journal of Medicine, 358(21), pp.2249-2258.

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