Copy of Your Inner Circle
“We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.“
– Jim Rohn
As leaders of our own lives and in the workplace, you are the average of the five people you spend most time with, listen to, mentor and spend your energy with.
These are the people who you are choosing to allow to influence you, tap into your energy, your thinking, your behaviour, to impact you, your reputation and personal brand.
It’s these 5 people – these relationships – that will directly impact your happiness and success.
A group of Harvard researchers launched the Harvard Grant Study in 1938. This unique study collected data on 268 male Harvard undergraduates during 75 years and followed the men’s lives through surveys and interviews. They looked at all aspects, including relationships, politics and religion, coping strategies and alcohol use. The most important finding was astonishing:
Relationships are the only things that matter in life.
Your Inner Circle, Relationships & Happiness
Healthy, supportive, and loving relationships are the backbone of happiness.
With all the money in the world, the career success, the good health you still won’t have happiness without connection and relationships.
True connections give you a platform of certainty to take risks outside your comfort zone.
And happiness drives your success.
Think of your current group of friends.
Who energises you? Who challenges you? Who triggers you? Who makes you laugh or frustrated? Who lets you down? Who builds you up? Who inspires you? Who helped you? Who made you feel good? Who made you feel used?
The people you allow into your personal inner circle have a tremendous impact on your psyche, your health, your map of the world, your version of reality, what’s normal and what’s not.
If you surround yourself with successful people, you will learn and grow from them.
If you surround yourself with those who are just comfortable staying within their comfort zone, that’s where you’ll stay.
The need to fit in is powerful. The need to connect is one of our core human needs.
It’s only when we decide that we want something more that we rely on our own motivation, determination and tenacity to go looking – to go searching – for what we don’t know.
The same applies in leadership or business ownership. Your inner circle will impact your strategic decision making, your ability to think clearly, and your ability to lead yourself and others.
So, What Is An Inner Circle?
It is the circle within a circle – it’s the closest circle to the centre.
We generally have 3 levels of friends.
The outer circle is those people we catch up for a social occasion, to play sport, to go to the movies or shopping. They could be work colleagues and acquaintances. This is quite a superficial relationship and that’s ok.
Then the middle level – where you connect on a deeper level, sharing some values & beliefs, attitudes and standards.
Then the inner circle – that handful of people that you can trust no matter what – that get you – that you can share anything with and know they will support and love you. This is the deepest friendship you can have.
I think sometimes we feel that we should have a large group within our inner circle. But actually it’s the opposite. Those outer circle relationships are important – to have fun and to connect. We only need a handful of the right people in our inner circle to thrive.
Who Do You Need In Your Inner Circle?
We need to bring intention to our inner circle. It’s not enough to like people or be comfortable with them. You need to give thought to what you want to accomplish – your goals – your non-negotiables, your values.
There are certain types of people that you would benefit from having in your inner circle:
1. Mentors – Those that have achieved what you want – have walked the journey. They have reached the goals you want to achieve.
2. Builders – People that motivate you and build you up. They are real. They will give you feedback and be honest.
3. Connectors -They connect you with other people that share similar interests or goals to you.
4. Boosters – They energise and boost you up. You can call on them to cheer you up when you are down.
5. Companions – They are always there for you. They are the first people you call with news. They are the shoulder you cry on and celebrate with.
“Surround yourself with people who are only going to lift you higher.”
~ Oprah Winfrey
You Are The CEO Of Your Life
You are the CEO of your life. Step up and surround yourself with people who are going to take you forward towards your dreams and goals, so you can achieve your potential.
And yes, you may have to leave some old friends behind. Those ones you used to turn to, but don’t make you feel great. The ones that keep drawing you back into the ‘pack’ – the comfort zone.
You know deep inside that relationship isn’t good for you, but out of obligation, loyalty or whatever it is, you keep going back.
Is it time to choose you? To put yourself first?
To be functionally selfish and go and find those people who are like you, you are heading in the same direction, winning and achieving.
Let’s do another exercise together.
Download the workbook from the ‘Materials’ tab at the top of this page.
Let’s explore who is in your inner circle now. Are they supporting you in your journey towards reaching your potential or are they holding you back? Who do you need in your inner circle?