“It’s not necessarily that you’re arrogant Ryan, it’s just that you’re too damn critical of other people.”
I let the words sink in as I hung up the phone. It wasn’t that I touted my own accomplishments; in fact I like to think of myself as a fairly humble (though self-assured) person. It was that I judged others for their lack of accomplishments, for their lack of ambition. Was my disdain causing others to view me as arrogant?
I mean, if your friends can make you fat then certainly they can make you apathetic, content, etc. (or successful, rich, fit.) Research everywhere will confirm your social circle affects your behavior. My logic is sound right?
I have a hard time understanding why people are content with “C’s,” being overweight, smoking weed, and slew of other things that to me signify laziness and apathy. That’s just my disposition I suppose. (I get that there are extenuating circumstances. I also get that those C’s probably won’t matter in the ‘real world.’)
In the scheme of things, I have accomplished jack shit, but there’s so many things I want to accomplish, that I’m working for, that I’d like to think I’m laying the foundation of right now. I don’t even compare myself to people my age. I try to interact and learn from people older, wiser and more experienced than me, so that I can achieve great things by the time I’m their age.
I love my friends dearly, and honestly, most of my good friends are all doing big things. It’s other people’s friends I get in trouble with. It’s no coincidence I’ve surrounded myself with ambitious people striving for something more than enough money to buy a bag of schwag for the weekend.
I’ve also pruned the people who try to bring me ‘back down.’ See, I have plenty of crazy ideas, and a friend once told me that someone ‘had to bring me back down.’ At the time I thought she was right, but the more I thought about it, the more that was blasphemy. I wanted people who supported my ridiculous ideas, who would help me, against all odds, find a way to make them a reality.
I guess subconsciously I’ve concluded that my lifeline had to be made of people who would push me and challenge me to achieve the things I desired. It’s a well-known fact that when people have your back it is easier to stay on course, easier to stay motivated.
If all your friends were stuck on 50 course hours after 5 years, lived for partying on the weekends, and apathetic about bettering themselves could you still scratch and fight and claw your way to success? You’re damn right you could, but I think it’s easier if your friends are in the same boat you’re in. So as far as I’m concerned, at least in some capacity, the answer to the title of this post is a resounding YES.
What do you think? Am I just trying to justify being a shallow asshole? Do the people you surround yourself with have an impact on where you end up? What do your friends say about the type of person you are?
Photo Credit: M.V. Jantzen
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