She told me she has great plans for herself….Yet life seems to pass by and she never gets much done. Despite a supportive family, she never seemed to find the motivation or the will-power to follow her dreams. Every time she thought about starting her own business, self-doubt would creep in quietly and destroy all her grand intentions. Every time she thought of doing something new, she’d think how impossible it all was and how hopeless it all seemed.
‘Tell me about your friends’ I said.
‘What’s that got to do with it?’ she asked, puzzled.
‘Oh, a lot!’ I smiled.
She was lost in thought for a few moments as though weighing all her different friendships. And then her brow cleared as she started seeing a pattern. It turned out that she spent most of her time with people who either complained about everything in life or criticised everyone around them.
‘What do you talk about when you have your coffee catch-ups?’ I asked.
She considered my question carefully. ‘Now that you ask, Nim, I think it’s mainly gossip. A bit of ‘did you know so-and-so did this or that. I’ve tried introducing new and interesting topics, things that’ll make us use our grey cells a little, you know. But no one seems interested. And when I talk about starting my own business, they tell me it’s a waste of time and that I’m too old for things like that.’
This little story sums up why many of us, without realising it, are struggling to get out of the rut we’re stuck in. Of course there are multiple reasons why people don’t manage to achieve their goals. But it does help to assess from time to time how the company we keep is influencing our choices and decisions. If you’re surrounded by people who are not only afraid to dream big but also think that dreaming big is a waste of time, you’ll start thinking the same. But if you have even one or two friends in your circle who bring out the best in you, who remind you that failing at something isn’t the end of the world, who encourage you to try new things…then the sky is the limit.
The Greek philosopher Epictetus once said: ‘The key is to keep company only with people who uplift you; whose presence calls forth your best.’
Nim Gholkar, 2018
PS: Tune in every Sunday at 4 pm (Sydney) / 11.30 am (India) for my Facebook Live Talk Show ‘SUNDAY CHATS WITH NIM’ where each week, I bring you a topic to help you get ahead personally & professionally.
Copyright Nim Gholkar 2018 All Rights Reserved