We've all heard the phrase “you are the product of the five people you spend the most time with.” In many cases the advice that follows this sentence is to change your friends, think about your family and look to upgrade the people you spend time with if you're ambitious to push forward in life.
I can see where this advice is coming from and in many ways it does make sense. However, I have a slightly different take on this theory that might be worth considering before abandoning your friends and family..
Of course the people around you influence the way you think, the way you act and the things that you do. However, there may be a huge contextual element which can have a huge effect as well.
If you wish to push forward in work then surround yourself with successful, intelligent, forward thinking people who have achieved your goals or have similar aspirations while at work.
If you want to make yourself a better sportsman or woman it can work very well to surround yourself with people better than you at the particular sport you wish to play. Practice with them, train with them and learn from them as much as you can. This will certainly raise your game far beyond messing around with people who are no better than yourself.
If you wish to learn a language then surrounding yourself with people that speak that language will be a huge help. It's common knowledge that a great way to learn a language is to spend 6 months in a country that speaks that language because you're being surrounded by it all the time.
The other place to very easily spend time with highly successful influencers is by reading or listening to books. Every second you spend reading a best selling book is a moment you spend with a best selling author who is no doubt an expert on the subject they speak of. Your mind can be highly influenced by the information you consume in books and courses.
The friends I have today are people I've known for years, they're good people, fun people. Some of them are successful and building a great life for themselves, others struggle and have it a lot tougher, as many people do in life. My business goals and my life goals are not influenced by these people or by hanging out with them. My successes and failures are not because of them, I simply enjoy spending time with them.
The people we work with at PT Distinction are amazing, they are successful and at the very top of their respective fields. They help us push on and influence us to create bigger and better things for our trainers and your clients. These are the people who influence my mind when it comes to building our business and helping online personal trainers.
The point here is this, if you want to excel in any area in life it's definitely beneficial to spend time with people who are excelling in that same area in their lives and to do it in the right context and situations. However, there is no need to abandon your friends and family.
Great business minds will push you forward to do well in business, great musicians will help you improve your musical skills.
In life itself you can still spend time with the people you like being with regardless of their successes or failures. There is no need to stop talking to family members or friends just to push on in life. If you keep doing that and everyone else does the same it could get very lonely at the top.
Life is more fun when you push forward with the people you love by your side.