The more I learn, the more I have come to realize the importance of surrounding oneself with the highest quality people possible (however you choose to personally define “quality”). For good reason, there is the cliche that “you are the average of the people you surround yourself with”
 
An odd quirk of mine, that I’ve discussed with my performance psychologist, is that I more heavily weigh a person’s values and morals than most people and am unable to get past it if our values don’t align. So often I’ve seen friends readily admit “What X did was wrong, but X didn’t do it to me so I’m still cool with X.”  The issue though is I think most of those friendships end up souring in the long-term because if X readily treated their friend like that and you disapproved but let it pass, it’s only a matter of time until it happens to you. It’s like the person who starts hooking up with someone who is cheating on their partner, enters a relationship with that person, then is shocked and heartbroken when it ends with them having been cheated on.
 
I’ve always been disciplined in judging people not just by how they treat me, but also as to how they treat others as well as with their values. If a person is selfish or doesn’t reciprocate or flakes on plans, I’ve never once regretted  ended the friendship but many times have regretted not ending them sooner. There are probably relationships that come to mind right now where they’re always the source of interpersonal drama, of stress, of tension. Will that relationship really be different or will that person really change in the coming years? If not, why continue to burden yourself with it?
 
Last year, I made a new friend “IB” through my network as we were doing due diligence on a large business deal. “IB” is immensely intelligent and also extremely opinionated in his views on ethics. Small infractions that I overlook, he views as utterly inexcusable dealbreakers. When “IB” goes on his rants regarding those with weak moral character and the importance of who we surround ourself with, I can’t help but smile at his extremism. Yet the more and more I reflect on my own life experiences, the more I realize that I think he is closer to the optimal point on the spectrum than I am.
 
What “friends” are you making excuses for and wrongfully keeping in your life?
 
What is the type of business partner or spouse or employer you want to “get in bed” with?
 
What is the identity you want to have and who are the people that will bring you closer to it if you surround yourself with them?

Post Tags: life

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