Why You Are The Company You Keep
When we were younger, we were most likely warned by our parents to be careful of whom we choose to spend our time with. They said this in reference to the way others would judge us in accordance to our friends, in addition to the influence our friends would have upon us.
We have all heard the saying that birds of a feather flock together, meaning that the company you keep reflects your personality. A smart person surrounds himself with other smart people. If you hang out with trash, you will be perceived as trash.
“Surround yourself with the dreamers and the doers, the believers and thinkers, but most all, surround yourself with those who see greatness within you, even when you don't see it yourself.”
You really are only as good as the company you keep. As you go through life, you begin to realize how important having true friends really is. Navigating your 20s is a difficult and confusing time and one better traveled with wholesome, close friends by your side. Unfortunately as we go through this time, we realize the people we once counted on are no longer the people we once thought they were.
The type of people you surround yourself with speaks of your values and what you stand for. We have all heard of the concept of being guilty by association, the act of people associating your behaviors and thoughts with the people you hang out with. If one of your friends acts in a negative way, you will be lumped in with him or her. Despite if this is true or not, it is all based on perception. Regardless if you believe yourself to be an altruistic person, a time may come when your bad company starts to influence your good behavior.
“It is better to be alone than in the wrong company. Tell me who your best friends are and I will tell you who you are. If you run with wolves, you will learn how to howl but if you associate with eagles you will learn how to soar to great heights.”
People perceive you based on the actions the people closest to you display. They make the assumption that people who are similar will spend time together. While you may be better than the company you keep, it does send a signal to those who do not know you well enough to make their our judgments. If you spend time with people who treat you poorly, this gives off the impression that you lack self-respect. Whether you like it or not, you will be judged for the people you associate with.
People are quick to judge and therefore it is a warning to choose your friends and companions carefully. If a person has a bad company of bad friends, the people around him or her will avoid them because of the image that is portrayed by the bad company. Our personalities become molded by different situations and environment. Our company, whether it is our parents, friends or colleagues, all influence our minds and us. This is why your friends and associates are a reflection of you.
“A mirror reflects a man’s face but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friends he chooses. The simple but true fact of life is that you become like those with whom you closely associate for the good and the bad.”
Your beliefs and goals are constantly changing in your 20s and you need people around you that will help you and not detract from your life. We must associate with others that bring out the best in us.
When you surround yourself with other people on a constant basis, you are exposed to their personal values and ideals so it should come as no surprise that you may end up taking on some of their mentality as well. This is why it is so important to remain aware of the people you surround yourself with.
Photo via WENN
Subscribe to Elite Daily's official newsletter, The Edge, for more stories you don't want to miss.