The Average of Five

A quote shared by my friend Beth inspired this post today: (check out her blog here)

“You are the average of the five people you associate with most, so do not underestimate the effects of your pessimistic, unambitious, or disorganized friends. If someone isn’t making you stronger, they’re making you weaker.”
― Timothy Ferriss, The 4 Hour Workweek

Doesn’t that quote make you step back and think?

Think about who you work near and interact with the most.  Think about who challenges you, inspires you, motivates or aggravates you.  Think about family members, neighbors and friends.  Think about it all and then ask yourself this: Who’s on your Board of Directors? Is it time for a re-org?

Categories: Animals, Faith, Family, Life, Thoughts, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

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27 thoughts on “The Average of Five

  1. Excellent!

  2. Gosh, isn’t that the truth! Important to remember.

  3. Wow. That really puts things in perspective, doesn’t it? (Sadly, we can’t re-org family members… or in-laws….!) I have a feeling I’ll be thinking of that Average of Five for awhile; that’s something to remember. Thanks! Have a good one, MJ!
    Oh – and PS – thanks for the Thumbelina comment. It’s an optical illusion: I won’t tell you what size shoes they are!!! 😉

    • I know, although I can tell you that we can’t re-org family but we can step away – we can let them “own” their own stuff. It’s not up to us to manage the difficult ones … when we do, it becomes our burden, at least that’s what I’ve found.

      I’m still thinking Thumbelina!

  4. Thanks for sharing MJ ~ It truly is one of my golden rules that I live, learn and love by. While it was tough being highly selective years ago, today it has made all the difference in my life. Glad to have you in my circle! Beth

    • Thank you for inspiring me with your thoughts, as you always do. We are do for a phone call; I have lots to catch you up on! Love the new green wheels – snazzy!

  5. *sigh* I’m surrounded by two young kids, two dogs, and a husband. I think while feeling weaker, I’m becoming stronger. Nah. I’m just tired. 🙂
    Working from home has it’s perks, though I often miss the ‘office’ relationships.

    • You know, when I worked from home for a year, it was great for the family but not so great for me. I missed the office interactions and I missed getting out of the house; school holidays couldn’t be beat but it was definitely a trade-off.


  6. Profound when you think about it. Thanks for encouraging us to take a little deeper look at who we are and how the people around us affect that.

    • Absolutely! It made me more conscious of who I allow “in” and who I give to as well … profound is the word! Thanks, Renee.

  7. I am surrounded by some amazing people at work, but the one who works nearest me is not so amazing. I try to deal with things as best I can, but it’s a challenge on many days. Your post makes me feel good about the fact that I had a discussion with my boss today about the seating arrangements when we move to a new location in January!

    • Being around a bunch of good people but one really not-so-great is kind of like having a great day except for the jerk says something snarky. We remember the snark and the good stuff gets pushed to the bottom. I am hoping that, when you move, she gets relocated … a couple of miles away! 🙂


  8. I surround myself with positive people and cleaned out the toxic ones about a year before I moved overseas… I typically follow my intuition on people and circumstances and lean towards people who encourage empowerment of others 🙂

    • I try to do the same, Sandi, and I Lysolled the heck out of my friendship cupboard about 2 years ago. Like you, I definitely follow my gut on people and trust my instincts. But like Dianna said, there are some we can’t exorcise quite so easily … those I just keep a steady distance from!
      Great to hear from you, hope you are feeling stronger and snappier every day 🙂 MJ

  9. I saw something about this recently…didn’t know this book, but the title makes me want to check it out! Interesting thought, that we each have a “board of directors.” ~ Sheila

    • I want to check out the book, also! It was Beth who introduced me to the “Board of Directors” concept — great idea, and I might need a re-org on mine 🙂 MJ

  10. Reminds me of letting go of relationships that no longer serve me well. Love the post.

    • Indeed. You know how we see the quotes or clips we need to see most at just the “right” time? This was one of those for me. Bests to you!

  11. Sob!!! I have Ghandi’s quote I keep in front of me: Be the change you want to see in the world.
    But this quote makes me realize, I’m not particularly someone who brightens the room I’m in right now. Time for a change. Thanks for the wake up.

    • Well … it made you re-examine things and that’s exactly why it was meant to be shared. I don’t think it just “chance” that I saw it when I did or that, after reading it, it took me less than 2 minutes to write this post… often what we need to see is placed in front of us, it’s up to us to see it. Bests to you, Barb.


  12. That’s powerful 🙂

  13. Great quote! Is it ok to re-post this on my blog?

  14. Reblogged this on My thoughts, pics and personal opinions and commented:
    Interesting theory about how we’re affected by those around us.

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