Are you being held back by those around you in pursuit of your goals? Does people around you make you feel negative and seem to discourage or limit your potential? If yes, then probably it’s wise to consider carefully the people that you spend most of your time with. Because when it comes to pursuing personal goals or professional growth, we all need people to help us see and think outside of our perspectives. For which, it is important that you must surround yourself with people who can make you grow and build you up and not otherwise. In short, your success on the path to self mastery depends on the people you choose to surround yourself throughout your pursuits.
“Everyday you must unlearn the ways that hold you back. You must rid yourself of negativity, so you can learn to fly.”— Leon BrownTweet
Whom you surround yourself with makes a difference
We get exposed to an array of people with different beliefs, characters and social backgrounds on a daily basis. More than the people, it is their attitude what makes a big difference in your life, whether it is positive or negative. As it is famously said, ‘we are the company we keep’. Our environment influences our dreams, attitudes, decisions, beliefs, and choices.
Whether we realise it or not we become like the people we spend the most of our time with. We start behaving like them, think or act like them, or even make decisions based on what we think they would want us to do. So, when you are working towards achieving your goals, people with a positive attitude can better understand your potential. Support you in your endeavours rather than naysayers who hold you back with their negativity, fear or judgment.
Hanging out with wrong people can influence you negatively. However, there are some situations where you can’t help the people who you are around the most. May be he or she is a family member or a coworker or the toxic workplace environment. Being self-aware enough to see and recognise if it is affecting you negatively can itself help you make necessary changes. And if your natural instinct is to be a people pleaser and you end up being susceptible to following the crowd, then you’ve got to be more aware of who you surround yourself with.
For instance, if you are among those who see everything as a competition and take others down, you are more or less likely to adopt that approach. On the other, if you are with those who choose to be compassionate over competition, you are sure to rub off some of their positivity in the way that you go about achieving yours.
“People inspire you, or they drain you – pick them wisely.”Hans F. Hansen
Why avoid naysayers
If you are looking to grow and improve, surrounding yourself with people who lack that ambition means limiting your potential. Because people you surround yourself with directly or indirectly influence how you think, act, and feel, they either inspire you, or they might discourage and drain you. Consider a conversation you have with people who are always judgmental and critical. Chances are that such discussions probably would have left you drained at some level, either lowered your morale, made you pessimistic or unpleasant.
Constantly being surrounded by naysayers can prove counterproductive. The negative people never support your ideas, undermine your efforts and are always there to tell you why it’s not worth pursuing some of your dreams. They even discourage you by saying there is no point going on the road of improvement. It’s more about the negative influence they can have on your thoughts, actions and motivation. No matter how mentally strong you are in withstanding their negative talk and behaviour, they invariably drain the energy out of you.
Toxic people often try to belittle others’ ambitions as it highlights their own feelings of inadequacies. Since it is difficult for them to see anything good or positive, they discourage others from pursuing theirs by saying things like, “it can’t be done”, “it’s not possible”, “you aren’t good enough “, “you will most likely to fail”. Some of them might even have wrong motives or get jealous of your success and would want to tear you down to build themselves up. You can come across them as chronic complainers, negative thinkers or those who are stubborn about their beliefs or opinions.
Their negative attitudes can often be contagious and have long term impact on your health and happiness. Investing your time and resources with naysayers will only result in negative outcomes and lowers your productivity. Eventually, you might come to realise your standards slipping, expectations lowering and self-doubt seeping in your personal or professional endeavours.
Why surround yourself with right people
- Positive people often enhance your decision-making, mindset and your motivation.
- They bring the best in you and encourage you to go after your dreams, and are there to celebrate your success, and support you as you move past your challenges.
- Spending time with them will undoubtedly make you feel invigorated, motivated and happy. They help keep your motivation and morale high and can help success come more naturally.
- Right kind of people will always guide and inspire you to achieve your goals with their expertise and experience and can be a source of encouragement and support in your goal pursuits.
- People with positive attitude raise your standards and help you to set realistic expectations of self. They consciously challenge you to reach your true potential and show you how you can go about achieving your goals.
So, what to look for in people you choose to surround yourself with
The company you keep is essential since it can either make or break you. If your goal is to improve, win or achieve your dreams, it is important to choose those who is better than you in certain ways, so you will be motivated to work harder, stretch your thinking and learn. In short, your dreams will become achievable only with right people around. This holds true even for your personal and career goals. It’s not always that the people you hold close personally are the same you rely on a professional or a business relationship.
For instance, in business, it is important to have a support system of people you trust who will help you get through tough times, people who are not afraid to tell the truth and also those who celebrate your successes. Similarly in work, with those who give a constructive feedback, share ideas, and offer guidance or those who enhance you skills to help you grow. And when it comes to personal relationships, if your goal is to improve, surround yourself with those who are good influences so you can learn from their experience and expertise. This however doesn’t mean they should be professionally successful and famous. It is more about people who inspire you to take on new challenges.
Passionate and committed. If you are on the path of constant improvement, and always strive to do better, you need to surround yourself with those who are the same. While it’s not healthy to measure one’s progress or success against other, one can always measure their level of motivation with that of another’s who are striving to work hard so as to push themselves to go about achieving their goals.
Positive attitude. People with positive outlook and attitude see obstacles as opportunities unlike those who see them as unsurmountable roadblocks. They support and encourage your happiness and development as opposed to trying to sabotage it. And push you to work hard and help keep your motivation and morale high. They can even provide a different angle on an issue or idea you want to pursue or help you make more sense of the world.
Active listeners. There are very few such people who are wanting to know more about you, your work and want to help you improve. They ask a lot better questions and listen to what you say. And genuinely get interested in what you do without judging your actions or that what you say. Listening provides space where you can freely express, and being heard takes you a long way in striving for what you desire.
Motivated and driven. Inspiration comes in different forms like books, movies, music, conferences, seminars or workshops. But in real time, you get more inspired by people who have achieved something, overcoming obstacles, and motivate you to live a better life. Motivated people spend their time wisely, building upon their ideas, working on their business, and always seem to be productive in ways you aren’t. Associating with them keeps you too motivated at making your dreams a reality.
Those who are creative. You are the sum total of who you spend your time with. If you think you are the smartest among those whom you are hanging out with, you are probably limiting your potential. Surround yourself with those who have greater skill than you. Seek out those who are creative and out of the box thinkers. They not only are willing to look at all possible solutions, but also guide you in troubleshooting, and could lead you to some creative solutions you might never have thought of otherwise.
Those who are honest. It’s easy to surround yourself with people who tell you what you want to hear, but that is not helpful in the long run. Instead you need to connect with those who will be honest and push you to be better. They will be the ones who tell you when your ideas aren’t right or when you aren’t being accountable to yourself. Surrounding yourself with those who always go along with what you say, are going to get you in trouble eventually. It is healthy to have disagreements or come up with different perspectives, and it is not healthy if someone isn’t being honest with you.
How to surround yourself with right people
- Identify the naysayers or toxic people in your personal or professional relationships. For this, you must first gain clarity about what your goals are to understand who/what is/isn’t good for you in order to make a conscious decision to let go of them. Sometimes it can be hard thing to walk away from friends or certain relationships that aren’t serving you in any way. But it almost always is worth making that change to create more space and time to be around people that help you grow as a person.
- Stay away from naysayers. Step away from chronic complainers, or those who emotionally drain you, and those who limit your potential. Choose wisely with whom you associate with regularly. Minimise your interactions with friends, family members, and coworkers who are negative, discouraging and bitter. This you can figure out based on your previous experiences and conversations. Stop participating in meaningless conversations or limit how much you share with them.
- Connect with like minded or ones who have the same goals as you. Cultivate real life relationships with people who have already accomplished their goals or those who can help you get there. Such kind not only are willing to share what it takes to make things happen, but also help you learn from the mistakes they have made along the way. Being with those who achieved the things you want to achieve is inspiring and it will motivate you to work harder. Get around people who support your vision and share same values.
- Make choices and set boundaries. Take a stock of who you are spending time with in life and online. Be aware of whether or not they are negatively impacting you. Establish healthy boundaries and make them known. You can set boundaries, but if you don’t enforce them, then they are of no use. You don’t have to be mean to exclude someone or cut people out, but once you become aware of where those boundaries need to be, you need to set them and stick to them.
Question for self-reflection
Whom do you spend most of your time with and how positively they influence you?
The people you surround yourself with help you grow in someway Or Are you being discouraged or held back by them?
How supportive are they in encouraging your ideas, dreams and goals you’ve set out to achieve?
How often do you give into negative views of those around you?
What are some of your ways to do away with naysayers or toxic people in your life?
Which areas of your life you can improve by letting go of negative people?
We are all product of our environment and are a true reflection of who we surround ourselves with. And it is also equally true that each of us have a choice in deciding whom we would want to be surrounded with. However, nothing good comes easy, as there will always be naysayers and obstacles in pursuit of your goals. It takes a conscious effort on your part to make sure you are with right people to follow your goals. Or those who can provide emotional support in times of need, right guidance when you are stuck and motivate you when you are down and out.
So, if you think you are not surrounded by the people who motivate and support, then it’s time to make some changes and find right people to bring the best in you and inspire you to succeed. Detoxing your life from naysayers and toxic influencers will allow you to become the person you truly want.