I cast a “knowing” smile as I passed a local bar overspilling onto the pavement, a few rowdy yet good-spirited lads clearly well under the influence.
I don’t miss those days.
I don’t regret them either.
After all, if I didn’t know what it was like to be lost, how could I know what it’s like to be found?
You see, back then I drank profusely to escape the not-knowing of myself. I didn’t know it at the time of course. I was “lost” to myself. The alcohol numbed the “pain” of self-denial and masked the vacuous nature of my inner world.
Today I don’t drink alcohol for several reasons, the biggest of all being I don’t enjoy the feeling of not being myself. It’s the same reason I don’t take any other substances for recreational purposes. Today I like being me. I don’t need to escape myself because I know myself.
Ain’t nothing better than an energised body and a clear mind. I like to think. And anything getting in the way of that process, anything dulling or numbing my consciousness or negatively impacting my mind’s ability to function effectively, gets eliminated from my life.
For some, that makes Christian a very dull boy.
Which is somewhat ironic, considering what I’m describing is the outer effects of inner enlightenment.
As monumental as this change has been, it’s only taken place in just over the last quarter of my life. And in the numerous transformations within that period, the most obvious has been the shift in the people I’m surrounded by.
Latterly, that’s become a much more deliberate shift. In the last few years I’ve been very intentional about who I interact with on a personal and professional basis.
But I can’t claim to have always been conscious in the act. The landscape was changing way before I was deliberate about it.
And that’s because you attract what you are in life.
Birds of a feather flock together. There’s much more wisdom in that old, well-used axiom than most people realise.
What’s any of this got to do with you?
Oh, just everything.
Because who you associate with on a regular basis has a MASSIVE bearing on your level of success in life.
It’s an irrefutable truth. It’s a subtle and silent shaper of conditions and circumstances and most people are oblivious to it.
The “average” person doesn’t give a second thought to who they associate with….which is why “average” people get what every other “average” person gets…
In truth, there are no “average” people, only people living unconsciously into average lives.
Like it or not we are ALL, without exception, a product of our environment.
And yet we are ALL at choice. No one is denied the free will card. The question is, do we play our card effectively in the most critical areas of our lives?
Sadly, as statistics continually reveal, too few do.
Not playing the free will card is a choice in and of itself.
Jim Rohn, broke at 25, a millionaire by 30, shared one of the biggest lessons of his life when he said: “you are the average of the 5 people you associate with the most.”
Now you can read Jim’s insightful words, intellectually grasp the wisdom in them and continue to go about your everyday life as you’ve always done.
Nothing will change for you.
Alternatively, you can make a choice to be, do and have more in your life by choosing to be around people who choose to be, do and have more in their lives.
I’m not suggesting you fall out with or ignore your friends, family, colleagues and business associates. I am suggesting, very strongly, with every cell of my being, that you wake up to the implication of NOT being intentional about every person who occupies your inner circle and how they serve you.
Do they encourage you to be, do and have more in your life? Do they model success in their own lives? Are they a forward-thinking, growth-orientated person? Are they supportive and encouraging when you speak into your dreams, goals and aspirations? Do they stretch you, challenge you and inspire you to greater things in your personal and professional life?
Be ruthlessly honest in your assessment because I can promise you this; self-denial is a very costly business.
This is not about judging others. This is about observation and implication. It’s not about casting certain people aside in your life, it is about being mindful of who serves you and your growth and managing the time you invest in with those who don’t.
If you fail to be intentional about the quality of your inner circle, the lack of quality in your inner circle will determine a lack of quality in the life you lead.
It took a number of years for this irrefutable truth to dawn on me. Much of the shift in my inner circle happened organically over a period of time because as I grew and those in my inner circle didn’t, they naturally fell out of my life.
If you choose success in your life it’ll happen to you anyway but know this; by not being intentional about who occupied my inner circle and by not understanding the implication, I was not only held back from significant progress in my life, it cost me the most precious resource of all – time.
Christian Simpson is the UK’s leading coach and mentor to business owners and entrepreneurs. For COMPLIMENTARY ACCESS to tried, tested and proven entrepreneurial success strategies, click here