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When reading about the friends you should keep for the best results in life – I found that depending on whether it was from a self-development guru or a financial guru complete opposite suggestions would be given. That’s why here, we will take a quick look at what I call the close friends paradox.
“Don’t make friends who are comfortable to be with. Make friends who will force you to lever yourself up.”
– Thomas J. Watson
You are the average of the five people you spent the most time with. Sound familiar? This is a very common concept if you wish to develop yourself to be the best you want to be. In this scenario, your closest friends should be “higher” or at least not “below” you, in order to push yourself to match their life style.
The people you spent the most time with are causing you to “keep up with the Joneses”. Similar here is that you try to mimic those around you, but in the financial sense this could be dangerous. Therefore, in this scenario, your closest friends should be “lower” than you, or at most equal.
Let’s have a look whether these life view can be merged.
- Development focus = skills & goals
- Financial focus = earning & spending
Earning and goals can come together and this is where the paradox would lie. IF you would want to become a higher earner, one would need to surround themselves with people who earn more to learn how to also earn more.
However, it might lead to overspending before reaching the actual high earnings goal, due to also following a spending pattern of those who earn more (“keeping up with the Joneses”). BUT this follows only if high income equals high spending, reality suggests that this could be highly plausible.
What follows is that surrounding you with people that have obtained the results you wish to mimic might indeed create positive habits, but also unintended negative habits! Therefore, Personal – and/or career development can be detrimental for your financial progression if life style inflation is not warded off in advance.
What kind of friends do you have? Are they the best you could wish for? Let them know by sharing this article with them right away!
Let me know if you want to hear more about this topic and I might expand on it in the future!
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2 thoughts on “Which wolfpack should you hang out with?”
I thought we should be friends with anyone regardless how much they earn.. But I got your point. I spent my wages just to eat with my friend who earned more than me. So I never got to save any money. But a good friend should know that you are at the moment saving so exclude you to eat out with her.
I also feel that it shouldn’t matter how much your friends earn. For me the lesson here is that you should be aware of the influence your friends (or colleagues) can have on you. But also the influence you can have on them!
When you say spending time with your friend means losing all opportunity to save, find ways to spend time at a lower expense – cook at home or have a picnic with food from home. While it allows you to save, you’ll also help your friend save money in the process!
Key in any relationship is communication – they might not know your struggle, as you also don’t know theirs (even if you think you do). Just be open on your limitations and your goals.