How Your Friends Influence Your Success
You can tell a lot about a person by the company that they keep. There’s a saying that goes something like: You become the average of the six people that you spend the most time with.
If you look at your company — the other co-workers, colleagues, business owners and industry professionals that you most often interact with — who are they, what do they stand for and what do they say about you?
How is your circle influencing you?
Where do you stand among your professional peers? Are you always the leader of the pack or are you making sure to surround yourself with people who will push you to be your best?
When you play tennis, the best way to improve your own game is to play with someone superior to you. This allows you to rise to the challenge of bringing your play up to the other player’s level, rather than holding back. Even if you are evenly matched with a competitor, it can be hard for you to improve.
Strong-willed friends can increase your self-control.A 2013 study published in Psychological Science reports that when people are running low on self-control, they often seek out self-disciplined people to boost their willpower.
Since self-control is vital to reaching long-term goals, befriending people with willpower could be the secret to success.
Too many social media connections can increase your stress level. A report from the University of Edinburgh Business School says that more Facebook friends means more stress. Researchers linked an abundance of social media connections to increased anxiety about offending people.
So before you begin adding people to your social circle, remember the potential downside to having too many friends on Facebook .
Close friends could be the secret to longevity. According to a 2005 study conducted by Australia’s Flinders University ,people with a large network of friends outlived their counterparts by 22 percent.
Other studies touting the health benefits of friendship have shown that friends lower the risk of disease by reducing blood pressure, heart rate, and cholesterol. So having close friends can be one of the best things you can do for your health.
Fewer friends increases the likelihood you’ll take financial risks. When people lack adequate social interaction, they’re more likely to take bigger risks with money, according to a study published in the June 2013 issue of Journal of Consumer Research.
Uncomfortable emotions can increase the chances that you’ll behave recklessly, which may have a negative impact on your bank account.
Getting to the next level.
Can the people around you provide you with the opportunities you are looking for and get you to the next level? If you are only networking, masterminding and interacting with those at your level who have the same types of contacts, they may not be able to push you to step up to the next level, and they will unlikely be able to refer you to those next level opportunities that you seek.
Paying it forward.
You can’t always be the student, so when you can, remember that there are others than can benefit from your guidance. As you improve your tennis skills, let a novice play with you from time to time to get exposure. Pay it forward, as there will always be more to learn and more to give.