” You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” – Jim Rohn
Although now I’m a personal trainer with healthier eating and exercising habits than most people, it wasn’t always this way for me. When I was in my late teens and early twenties, I did what a lot of people that age still do: I drank a lot of alcohol, I regularly ate fast food, and I didn’t exercise that much. And even though my body felt like crap and I knew it wasn’t healthy for me, I still had a great time hanging out with my friends and doing all that stuff.
In fact, it wasn’t until I became a personal trainer (literally a few days after my 22 birthday) that my lifestyle started to change. As I started out in my new profession in the Eden Roc spa in Miami Beach, I became surrounded by like-minded people, either fitness/nutrition professionals, athletes or exercise enthusiasts, who were all supporting each other and interested in common goals: to look good, be in shape and to be healthy. I credit being immersed in this environment for a lot of the “healthy” habits I now have today. Undoubtedly, the people who you surround yourself with have a huge effect on you as a person.
And this brings us to to this post’s topic:
Your Social Network!
Most people don’t think about how their friends affect their behaviors but there’s some exciting new research that shows that who you are friends with, and even their friends and their friends’ friends, have a profound impact on on everything from your weight to your happiness. In the video below, researcher Dr. Nicholas Christakis shows data on how you have a 45% higher chance of being obese if your friends are obese, and that even who you ultimately are as a person is affected by who you associate with:
Now that I’ve got you thinking about your friends and how they affect you, I want you to think about who is supportive of your exercise and nutrition goals and who isn’t. Do you have friends that encourage you to go to the gym and to eat more healthy? Or do you have friends that mostly try to talk to out of going to the gym and eating right saying that you need to “lighten up” and “have some fun” and that you need to “live a little”?
What I want you to realize is that if you are trying to make a big change in your life, whether that change is to exercise and eat better or to make more money or to go back to school or any other big change, you might might need to change who you hang out with. Reaching your goal may require more than just hard work; you might have to end some friendships that weren’t supportive to your new goals or, on a more positive note, make some new supportive friends along the way!
Did this information help you? I want to hear from you. SHOW ME THAT YOU’RE ALIVE and leave a comment below. Thanks!