Whether we realize it or not, parents, family members and even friends have such a strong ever-lasting impact on our lives, such a powerful impact that we sometimes undervalue it or just don’t acknowledge the effect the people in our surrounding have on us.
Remember the famous quote “You’re the average of the five people you hang out with”? While only five may be taking it a little too far, the essence of the statement is still there. Think about it. We’re born into a family with distinctive personalities and beliefs, forcing an influence on us at all stages. Some are born into an extremely careless family with an environment so negative, it brings out the worst in them. Some are born into supportive and caring families, that are there with them throughout their journey. But as we grow up, (hopefully) becoming more independent and driven, we are bound to leave the nest to find ourselves looking for new characters to influence our lives.
Friends who are there for you when your family isn’t. People who you tell secrets and concerns to and most importantly, intimate people you get inspired from. These are the people who you can tell anything to, things you can’t discuss with your Mom or Dad. These people, who serve as a critical piece in building you up, are the ones who will probably help you through the bad and the good.
But we filter these potential friends. We categorize them, analyzing if we genuinely like them or casually hate them. Either way, we make up our minds and move on. We have all had to make these decisions. But see, most of us don’t really know how to distinguish between a friend and a real friend. Between a friend and an acquaintance.
I remember sitting beside this guy during college, a genuinely cool kid, nothing wrong with him, well except for the fact that he was a “me” man – a man who always thought he was right and never doubted his idea because they were simply genius…
If these are the people you call friends, if these are the people you surround yourself with, then you’re committing suicide by interacting with toxic human-beings who don’t benefit you in any way. Think I’m wrong? Think of any of your “friends” who fits the description above. Could you see yourself telling them that he or she is in fact acting like a complete assh*le when they’re being one?
Your friends are supposed to keep you in check, criticize you and motivate you to take the right decisions. They distant you from your bad-sides, preventing you for becoming a complete dick. Acquaintances on the other hand don’t mind you messing up, in fact, they don’t really care.
Personally, I always surround myself with the right people who I know will benefit me, and vice versa. These are people who demand respect and respect others – people who have boundaries and understand that we, as a group, are only as good as our weakest member.
If you’re just now realizing that, shit, nobody of my friends has ever questioned or put me in check – ever, then you might want to take a step back and rethink who you’re hanging out with. And save me the BS about how your friends don’t have to benefit you in anyway – snap out of it.
Now I’m not saying that true friends should be doing you favors and cleaning up after you, no. Im saying that they should by all means bring something significant to the table. People who can motivate and inspire you, increasing your peak performance to establish a newer better you! Don’t chose an insecure friend who you can walk all over and call them a friend – that’s not it (and if you do, seek help).
Another immature point we have to bring up is the “quality over quantity” rule. I don’t care if you’ve got 3000 friends on Facebook, I really don’t. Understand that two qualitative, supportive and beneficial friends are much better than a thousand “buddies”. Your friends will either kill you slowly or slowly build you.
Picture Credit: NBC/Friends