You Are The Average Of The 5 People You Spend Your Time With … Here Is Why …
It was the motivational speaker Jim Rohn who said that we are all the average of the five people we spend the most time with. He didn’t quantify it, and it’s certainly not scientifically verified, yet most people claim that the statement is true. But why?
What Does The Quote Mean?
In a nutshell, saying that you are the average of the 5 people you spend most of your time with is the same as saying that these people have a massive influence on your life now, and in the future.
We are all social chameleons who are easily influenced – especially when there are 5 people influencing us! But we aren’t just singling you out here; indeed, we are all social chameleons who are subject to the whims, likes, hates, desires and so on on of the people we hang out with the most.
We subconsciously pick up on other peoples’ habits, habits which go on to shape us and what we become. We are influenced by those closest to us, from their sayings to their actions. And sometimes we even mimic the way they walk! Whether you are creating goals, replacing old ones and gravitating towards a specific dream, the life you live might not be your life, but the life sculpted by those around you.
The upshot of this? You need to be careful who you hang out with!
Let’s Take A Look At Why Any Of This Really Matters
Think your destiny is in your own hands? Maybe. But first you need to control who you’re friends with.
If you hang out with successful people who are smart, funny, rich, generous and intelligent, you will try to match their heights. If, however, you hang out with negative folk who make you the butt of their jokes, and who prefer to laze around, rather than get things done, your future is in their hands. Doesn’t sound so cool, does it?!
Whatever the dimension and outlook of your “inner circle”, you are pretty much guaranteed to be shaped by it. So, you need to decide what you want from life.
Do you want to be smart? Start hanging out with smart guys!
Do you want to be sarcastic? Start hanging out with people who are sarcastic and make jokes about everything!
Do you want to be a success, perhaps? Start hanging out with successful people!
It’s that simple.
But How Do You Break Off Relationships?
If you have decided that you actually dislike your inner circle and really don’t want your life and outlook to reflect it, this means that you’re going to take a hold of your life by breaking off certain relationships. Tricky.
See, when we were younger and more carefree/careless, we just fell into friendships. We didn’t choose who we hung out with, and this is an important point. Sure, we gravitate to people who are kinda like us, but how much did we really know about ourselves at that age? Were we really aware of what we wanted to be?
So, what happened was that you fell into friendships that are perhaps now beginning to grate. And what could be happening now is that your friends are starting to bring you down with their negativity.
You don’t have to automatically end the friendship. You could confront your friends and talk things through, tell them how you feel and so on. You could also just spend less time with them and gradually put distance between the two of you.
There are tough choices ahead, particularly if a friendship is floundering and impacting your life in a negative way. But you need to bear in mind at all times that change will be good for you. It will benefit you a whole lot. And you really do need to look after yourself here.
And This Actually Isn’t So Harsh
You might think that all of this sounds a tad superficial. You might think that choosing to swap your friends for new ones sounds cold, shallow and heartless.
You need to ask yourself whether or not you want to grow. Do you want to achieve something in life? Do you want to reach YOUR goals? This is life. Relationships come, and relationships go. Some people change, some stay the same. But you need to remember that, because your friends have the power to influence you so much, you need to retain the right to move on if necessary. If it is YOU that is going to become the average of the 5 people you hang out with most, it is your choice to make a break.
After all, we are not all meant for each other. Just because your friend has been your friend since you both studied hair dressing when you were 17, it doesn’t mean that you are destined to be friends for life. You were friends in college!
Naturally, you need to be careful how to swap your friends. Dumping poor ones for rich ones IS superficial. Searching for “perfect” friends IS shallow.
But what you need are supportive friends with similar values to yours. If you’re trying to give up alcohol but your current friends won’t let you, they are not being supportive. They are being cruel, and it is time to move on. You and they are not the same anymore.
The most important thing to take into consideration when choosing a new inner circle is your future. What do you want from your future? What are your goals and dreams? What are your values, and what direction are you moving in?
Answering these questions will help you to select the right friends. It will give you some framework to work with, and it will ensure that your inner circle is tight and reflects you and your values. Once you have got your inner circle, your life will change with it; it will start to move in the right direction, and you will know that you have carved your own destiny.