Who you surround yourself with is who you become
You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. — Jim Rohn
My Saturday morning fitness routine is trampoline practice at Trapeze School New York. The school has an open-level flying trapeze class at the same time.
This weekend marks my 15th anniversary of doing flying trapeze. In that time, I’ve observed hundreds (maybe thousands) of people try flying trapeze for the first time. When you see that many people do something, you begin to notice patterns.
What‘s Your Instinct When You Face Your Fears?
Last week a group of women were in the early morning trapeze class. They were friends celebrating a bachelorette party. By midway through the class, half of the women had dropped out. Once one woman decided to drop out, it gave implicit permission to others in the group to do the same.
Flying trapeze is hard. It also forces us to face big fears. It can be frustrating at times, especially when you feel like you’re not getting it. The temptation to quit is strong.
The dynamic that occurred with the bachelorette party is not uncommon, and it can be especially pronounced in a group where everyone knows each other.
Pressure to Continue
Contrast that dynamic with how my day played out last week:
After trampoline practice, my friend Derek showed me some new exercises that he learned from his personal trainer. He and I spent about 2 hours conditioning.
I was getting ready to leave when some other friends arrived. They were doing some new core exercises, and I felt inspired join them. We pushed each other in some intense core strength exercises before moving on to pull-ups.
One More Drink vs One More Pull-up
Have you ever had that experience of being out with friends and ready to leave, and everyone pleads with you to stay for “one more drink”? In the moment, you might be tempted to stay for one more drink. But the next morning, you’re hurting.
My experience last week was like that, except instead of “one more drink” it was “one more pull-up.”
The next morning, I was hurting, but in the best of ways. I felt the soreness of a great workout. I embodied the confidence that comes with knowing I pushed myself to my max. And I was swimming in fresh ideas, a gift from the muse for my long visit in her house — which sits at the intersection of fitness, friendship, and fun.
Peer Pressure Can Be Your Friend
Giving into the “peer pressure” in these cases strengthened my body and filled my reserve of ideas in a way that didn’t feel like work.
It is a lot different from how I used to feel in my 20s. One more drink never moved the needle toward realizing my dreams. One more pull-up builds strength that supports me beyond my physical body.
Who are the people in your neighborhood?
Environment is more potent than willpower.
A big component of your environment is the people in it.
If you surround yourself with people who make it easy for you to quit, you’ll condition the habit of quitting.
If you surround yourself with people who push you to test your limits, you will grow.
Those extra core exercises strengthened more than my abdominal muscles. They reached my spiritual core.
Life, like trapeze, can be hard. It forces us to face big fears. It can be frustrating at times, especially when you feel like you’re not making progress. Feeling like you want to quit is normal.
The people in your life can push you to grow or drag you down with them. They influence whether you give up or strengthen your resilience.
Peer Pressure: Friend or Foe?
I dove into this topic further in today’s episode of My Circus Life, which itself was a test of my resilience when my signal dropped out 3 times.
Watch the replay to see how I handled that frustration and other unexpected interruptions. There is value in the amusement factor as well as in the content.
You can watch the replay on my Vimeo channel at the link below.
Who you surround yourself with is who you become .
Who are you surrounding yourself with?
Who are you becoming?
I’d love to hear. Please share your responses in the comments.