Day #785:You are the Average of the 5 People You Spend Your Time With!

I am sure you have heard this sentence several times, ‘you are the average of the top 5 people you spend your time with’. Whether you believe it or not, the people you spend your time with, whom you listen to and who influence your life define who you become. More importantly the music, books, movies you listen to, read, watch feed into your subconscious.

I have always wanted to be a spy (that’s a story for another day), I realize this happens because I grew up reading a lot of spy novels and watching a lot of spy movies, my heros where spies and I developed a peculiar paranoia and always thinking there’s an angle to every just like spies. Okay maybe this is not a really strong example. But have you ever felt like any time you listen to really depressing music consistently, you start to feel depressed? Even if you had no reason to be depressed?Psychologist call this priming. Priming is an implicit memory effect in which exposure to one stimulus influences the response to another stimulus. In a study, subjects were implicitly primed with words related to the stereotype of elderly people (example: Florida, forgetful, wrinkle). While the words did not explicitly mention speed or slowness, those who were primed with these words walked more slowly upon exiting the testing booth than those who were primed with neutral stimuli.

So the people you talk to a lot everyday in the office or at home: your co-workers, friends or spouse have a great effect on what you think about consciously, how you see yourself and how you challenge yourself to move towards having an extra ordinary life. If your friends don’t like to read, they only want to party and have fun and they think reading is boring, you invariably start to succumb to that social pressure. You start thinking at some point perhaps reading is too stressful and should have a little fun.  Bottom line, choose the people you associate with carefully because they have far reaching influence on your life more than you can see right now.

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