Power By Proximity


We are chameleons by default. It is our nature to mesh with our surroundings. We become accommodating of what is seen as the regular, and accepting of the things others are doing- oftentimes falling into the same habits and patterns ourselves. Problem is, our success is dependent on our habits. So, whether you’re mindful of it or not, the people around you can either build you up or tremendously set you back.

And it does not just stop there.

You may have heard before the quote: “You are the average of five people you spend the most time with,” by entrepreneur Jim Rohn. However, research suggests there is so much more to it than that. James Fowler and Nicholas Christakis, sociologists that have studied social networks, analyzed data from the Framingham Heart Study and found that if even a friend of a friend of a friend (who you personally did not know) became obese, then you are 10% more likely to become obese yourself. The way I see it, everyone you meet and form different types of relationships with are linked to others whose habits rub off on them. Eventually, these habits trickle down to you.

That is why it is so important to be intent when forming social networks.

A key thing to look for, prior to letting someone into your life, is consistency. I look for consistency because I value loyalty, and the best indicator of whether or not someone is going to remain loyal to you is whether or not they remain loyal to themselves. You know the people. The ones who swear up and down that their new diet is starting tomorrow. Yet, “tomorrow” becomes next week when you check up on them. Or the person who is always talking about how they’re going to start a business and make it big one day, but they haven’t taken a single step to make that happen. At the end of the day, if a person takes no aspect of their life seriously, then what makes you think they’ll take a relationship with you seriously? Even worse, what is going to prevent you from becoming like them? Now don’t get me wrong, from time to time we all fall into bad habits, and I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of the two previous examples. However, more likely than not, the ones who are going to either fuel or get you out of those cycles of bad habits are those in your social circle. On that note, one of the best ways to attract better people into your life is to switch up your personal habits for the better.

At the end of the day, you become what you accept. If you accept people in your life who are complacent and lazy then you too will become these things. Ultimately, you’ll enter into a self-fulfilling prophecy. In defining yourself as complacent and lazy you will continue to attract people who are, thereby fueling the cycle. The good news is, this logic can be applied in another direction. Firstly, in establishing successful habits yourself, you’ll attract successful people, who, in turn, will motivate and encourage you to be the absolute best that you can be.