(Unless you’re Jen Gresham, who fired her father, or Jay-Z who drew a line with his friend.)
***Shitty friends’ll crush dreams faster than anything else I can think of – and they won’t even realize they’re doing it.
TVs influential, books are influential… but your friends? Your friends are insanely influential.
And some of them – oh watch out – some of them will say allll the right things. They’ll manipulate you with emotional words that could trick a lawyer.
Am I trying to blame your friends or ‘ruin your social life?’ Well, you can see it that way if you want.
Is it more likely that I want you to have the tough but powerful conversations that people avoid?
Is it more likely that I want every human being to be surrounded by people who match them truly and ryze together?
There exists some people close to you, who just want to keep you around, ’cause you’re positive and success-focused, and they’re not, and neither are their friends.
Some ‘friends’ want your value, but they don’t wanna match it.
It’s bullshit, and you deserve better.
Stop settling for people who don’t even intend to change, and want to repeat the same manipulative patterns over and over.
Surround yourself with awesome friends.
I repeat: surround yourself with awesome friends.
And hey… if you need a friend, someone who cares, connect with me at Ryze. Post a comment, use the contact form, add me on twitter, whatever.
I’ve yet to find someone who dreams bigger and loves deeper, (though I’m more about co-operation than competition.)
And there you have it, the cold hard truth delivered with all the warmth, passion, and realness I can summon.
Rock on and ryze up guys.
J felt soooo popular. He felt so loved. Maybe you’ve been there. You’ve got friends, family, support systems. You know that no one’s actively out to get you, and you’re ‘safe’ from the world. But what if the people around you were a slow-poison? What if you were a frog and the water was gradually getting hotter? See, J was like… super-smart. Beyond smart. He was genius. He “got” things, and got them fast – as long as he was paying attention. He was also extremely generous. He delivered excellent art, writing, and insight to any project anyone was doing, unprompted and enthusiastically. Now that’s giving. So what’d the school population think of this? They f***ing loved it. They loved him at their parties. They loved him in their group work. They loved him everywhere. Music hall kids, jocks, tech-geeks, philosophers, goths, skaters… even the teachers loved him. Who wouldn’t? “Hey check out the generous smart guy, let’s hang with him!” So he was very popular, people loved him, but for all the wrong reasons. And he was making it worse every day. Until… To be continued.
Real friends value you, a lot.You gotta value your time. I’m talking every. single. second. Value it. Every moment’s precious. Value it. How? I’m glad you asked. You value your time by NOT spending it with people who give you their minimum effort. I’m not kidding– if I catch you spending time with a single human being who disrespects your value– I’m coming to where you are and slapping you. Hard. Spend time with people who truly value you. Now, this is tricky to do if you aren’t clear & comfortable on what you’re worth. Dunno what you’re worth? Well, make it your number one priority. Don’t go and stuff your face. Don’t go nap. Don’t surf another window – Figure out what you’re worth, because no one else will do it for you. Claim your value or you’ll be treated poorly by default, ’cause people don’t just randomly worship someone who doesn’t know what they’re worth. Let’s say you feel your time is worth $100.00/hr, and you hang with people who expect you to travel to them, split the bill, and to “pick your brain” & benefit from your presence at zero cost to them – and without them bringing a clear, powerful form of value to the table for you… That’s you… being de-valued... again. Check it. You probably have about 150 ‘active’ connections, and let’s say… 15 ‘close’ friends + family. How may of those friends and family actually, truly, deeply respect you and value your time at $100.00/hr? Do they treat you with the same respect they use to treat $100.00 concert tickets? Do they treat you with the same respect that they treat an appointment with a $100.00/hr lawyer? Or do they treat you like chump change? And a better question… do you let them?
For example, I’m easily worth the $500.00 an hour I charge (at time of writing), and I’ve no problem being clear and comfortable about that. I consider that a deal. It’s real, it’s me, and that rate will go up like it always has. Why? Because a rare consultation with me will blow the doors wide open for you on tons of taboo topics you wish someone would explain. I’m unique, I’m deep, and there’s no competition for what I bring to the table. I’m a rockstar urban shaman, a wise man for a digital world, and people are happy to pay for what I offer. My testimonials speak volumes.D’you see how I express about myself? D’you see how I naturally know who I am and what I’m about? I know my value. You may not be where I am yet, but do you wanna be? Because you can. It’s easy. And yes, it was scary the first time I claimed my value. And that’s okay.
Supportive friends head your direction.Let’s say you want to be rich and famous, master your own destiny, and rock life and all your friends want to settle for ‘whatever job’ they can get, stay as comfortably numb as they can and marry whatever wife/husband likes them first — what support are they really gonna offer you? Chances are for some relationships, your directions in life are totally different. I know you wanna believe they’re not. Go ahead then. Believe you’re going the same direction when you’re really not. I wish you luck with that. They’re heading west toward Settle-Down-Lane and you’re heading east toward A Life Of Options. Be honest:
- When things get tough are your people gonna share their deep, personal stories where they faced death and realized their dreams, inspiring you further, or are they gonna keep the conversation shallow?
- When you have a new entrepreneurial idea, are they gonna engage you on the topic and dig deep to help you sort out the details, or are they gonna change the subject?
- When you need someone to believe in you, stand firm, and extend a true hand, free of pressure, are they gonna step up and do that, or tell you “they’re sorry”?
Your team travels at your speed.Okay, so maybe a lot of your friends and fam have similar dreams and goals as you – awesome! They even value your time, so you’re golden right? Hah. Then why are you still reading this post? I thought so. See, it’s not enough for them to value you and have same aims. There’s something else that’s vital. Life’s a journey (everyone gets this, right?) and on that journey you need people who travel at a similar speed. Quick! Take a breath. Right now! Feels good right? Well, if you hang with people who aren’t truly comfortable with your pace in life, then they’re never really ‘breathing,’ they’re always “trying hard” to keep up with you (or slow down for you). That’s not good for them, or for you. If you’ve gotta keep taking your foot off the gas to babysit someone who’s scared to move quickly around the turns, you’re gonna a) not get as far as you’d like in life b) be miserable and c) keep your peeps settling because you never inspire them to ‘catch up’. You can’t inspire them to catch up, if you’re always slowing down to go beside them. If you wanna inspire people, you need to do everything you can to put your pedal to your personal ‘floor’, and stop worrying if your friends’ cars & driving skills are up to the pace. That’s their business. I know because I’ve been there. I’m a trailblazing game-changer but I spent years of my life hoping, praying, wishing, waiting, encouraging, praising, appreciating and having faith that my ‘friends’ and ‘family’ would join me on my journey. Nope. They wanted 9-to-5. They wanted picket fences. They wanted shallow conversations, gossip, and settling. They wanted to avoid skipping sleep. Ever. They wanted to avoid creating something and then watching the market reject it. They wanted to avoid failure. They wanted Mommy. These are fully grown people I’m talking about, y’know? They wanted to “save up” for “a single vacation”, they wanted to “make 10k more a year”, they wanted to stay with their shitty friends, and they wanted me to stay with them. These people are all capable of SO much more, and they aim so damn low it hurts. I wanted to triumph over sleep, milk more joy out of life, and build empires. I wanted to talk about bigger things, express myself and impact the world through legendary contribution. So… they happily gave me ‘a bit’ of money, ‘a bit’ of support, invitations, ‘love’, etc. so long as I played small and stuck to the life we were all used to. Please. When I wanted to experiment with ballsy ideas, when I was homeless, when I hung around with entrepreneurs and people “outside of retail”, they stopped even trying to meet me or connect with me, and that’s fine. We didn’t really have much to talk about. We had different hopes, dreams and beliefs. In fact, that’s awesome– that’s the way it should be. Because you don’t want shitty friends + family anywhere near you. You really don’t.
Let ‘Em GoSo, back to the shocking conclusion to our story.
You may be wondering what J did with all his popularity? He realized it was all fake. It was a trick. It was holding him back. It was people who were happy to suck his value, but only if they didn’t have to grow or contribute more than the bare minimum. That’s not the kind of popularity he needed. He threw it all away. Over the next 7 years, he trimmed out every needy, clingy, half-assed ‘supporter’ out of his life. And he did it in a very magical way. He didn’t want conflict. He didn’t want pressure. He liked smoothness. He liked harmony. And he wanted these people to either jump whole-heartedly on board, as real badass friends, or for them to just be gone from his life. He knew he might end up alone, and he made peace with that. Hopefully not, but he faced the truth and admitted it was a possibility. And he did end up alone — not what you wanted to hear, right? Well, almost. There was one real, true soul, who extended tons of support, who believed in him. He found his real friends, and he used a trick that helped so much. The trick was “Principles, not people.” He decided that he’d adopt some principles and stand for them. He made sure that they were powerful and beautiful, and one’s he’d be proud to have. Then he expressed them to each of his friends and the next time they connected , as best as he could and he let them decide if they fit his principles, or not. He paid attention to their actions and responses and their lives, because when you believe in principles, you live them. They’re impossible to hide.
And he was proud of those principles, and so he checked to see if people’s actions told him what they were about, and anyone who didn’t feel clearly aligned with those principles, he gently let go. And letting them go set him free. It looked like he had no support systems, and no friends. It looked like he lost it all. Looks are often deceiving, don’t you agree? Because instead of losing it all, he gained himself, and found out who really believed in him. He found out who’d bet on him and have faith in him. And gaining yourself is worth more than all your fears combined.
- He decided to hang with people who had consistent passion and didn’t allow time/money issues to hold them back.
- He decided to focus on harmony + contribution in his relationships, and to hang with others who did the same with consistent action.
- He decided to hang with people who were focused on mastering their lives with consistent action instead of being victims making excuses.
- He decided to hang with consistently positive people, instead of complainers.
- He decided to hang with people who consistently had a “do what it takes” attitude instead of “do the bare minimum attitude.”
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