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hotwired 06-06-2008 06:01 AM

In business and in life, you are who you associate with. Depending on your upbringing, moral fiber and your placement on the "follower to leader" scale, you will tend to take on some of the characteristics and habits of those you surround yourself with. Hang with folks who are just a little further up the road than you and they will beckon you forward. Surround yourself with only those you are superior to and your growth as a human being will slowly come to a halt, and most likely even backslide to the "mean". Meanwhile, those you are "lording over" may improve, having you in their lives, and then move on as you settle down to their level. This observation is confirmed by most of the relevant and credible business and personal development books available on the market, both new and classic. So what about being of service? Isn't this idea elitist?

This is one of those ideas that has a high potential for "the words getting in the way". We're not talking about snubbing those who are beneath you. We're talking about having the BULK of your associations, both personal and business, be of a higher caliber than you in whatever area you're pursuing. If being a great dad and husband is important to you, surround yourselves with successful fathers and husbands. Those who display traits you want. Don't go drinking with the guy in the office who flirts with the secretary or misses his daughter's dance recital because of work or other commitments. You will seek the mean. This "means" that you will either grow or shrink in proportion to the average quality of those you associate and spend time with.

One thing that makes it EASY to hang with those who are a "mile back" and HARD to hitch your wagon to the "man of the year" is the Ego. The ego would MUCH rather be "king of the little people", "big fish in a small pond" or the "success amidst a group of failures". Hanging with the specimen who's never missed a single one of his son's 23 ball games, raves about his wife to everyone he talks to, never drinks more than a glass of wine at a meal, and takes time to exercise and meditate every day can be a humbling and ego diminishing experience. In a word; "uncomfortable". However, with discomfort comes growth. This is true in personal, business and in fact every area of life. Armed with this one fact, you can accelerate your growth as a business man, leader, father, husband, brother and human being.

quickcleanlawn 06-06-2008 08:45 AM

Thats Awsome. well said Ken.

Steve 06-06-2008 01:32 PM

Thank you for the post Ken.

This kind of reminds me when I read about Malcolm Forbes Father, who started Forbes Magazine. He also said if you want to be successful, you need to surround yourself with successful people. And I can't remember exactly how the entire story went, but he spent quite a bit of time going up and down in elevators of a building where wealthy people lived. He did this to meet and talk to successful people that would lead him to find his own success.

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