Updated: July 27, 2023
We are social creatures.
Even if you believe you’re a loner or an introvert, I bet there are still people whom you choose to talk or spend time with more often than others.
In addition, we normally hang out with people whom we share similar interests with; and try to avoid those whom we find uninteresting or whose character is not aligned with our principles.
Now, take a moment to think about your social circle.
I dare you to list down all the names of your family, friends, and colleagues whom you get to spend time, or even just talk to online, at least two hours each week.
Go ahead, do it now.
Done with the list? Great!
You should know that you are the average of all these people.
Yes, if you can quantify, sum up and divide the passion, drive, and level of success of all the people you constantly interact with in your social network (both offline and online), the result will be your own passion, drive, and level of success.
Try to imagine, analyze and see if I am correct in this assumption.
Am I right to say that you are the average of all the people you regularly spend time with?
If so, then it means that if you want to be successful, then you have to spend more time with people who have greater passions, higher drives, and better levels of success than you.
Qualify Your Social Circle
Go back to your list, and encircle the names of those who give you inspiration. The people who provide optimism and supply you with motivation to follow your dreams. They are your “heroes” that provide you with the aspiration to become better.
Now, put an X-mark beside the names of those who give you more negativity than positive energy. These are people who complain a lot, who always see the “half-empty” glass, and who rarely give encouragement to you. They are your “vampires” that slowly drain the life out of you.
The remaining people are the “bystanders.” They are the ones who watch you on the sidelines. They may be ready to help and support you but would probably never initiate any action unless you ask them to.
Once you’re done with this, you can now proceed to the most difficult part of this exercise.
Move Up Your Average
Resolve to spend more time with your heroes and less time with your vampires; better if you can totally avoid them.
No, I’m not telling you to ditch your friends who are going through a rough time in their life and whom you may be supplying “energy” to. Most vampires, whom I’m telling you to avoid, are the fair-weathered friends, relatives, and acquaintances who give you nothing but a false sense of relationship. I know, you know, who I mean.
Next, seek out more heroes and forge new friendships in your life. These people are everywhere and are actually easy to find. Start with your own heroes, and ask them to introduce you to their friends. But also go out, network, and meet new people.
As you add more people with “higher scores” than you and take out those who drag you down – expect your own average to increase, along with the quality of your life.
If you can do it, then I guarantee that you’ll have a better attitude towards work, have a deeper motivation to succeed, and encounter more opportunities in your life.
Yes, success will be within your reach.
Paying It Forward
Now, remember your bystanders?
Yes, they’re still there – most probably just watching and cheering you on for your success. Do them a huge favor and invite them to “join the parade.” In short, pay it forward and be the hero they need.
In the grand scheme of things, transforming your bystanders to become heroes themselves will increase your own average as well.
And in the end, not only were you able to change and improve your life, but you also became a hero and helped others to change theirs for the better as well.
Who are your heroes? Your vampires? Your bystanders?
More importantly, to the people that matter to you most, are you their hero? Their vampire? Or just a bystander to them?
This post is part of the series “On Money, Friends and Family”