Published: 25th July 2020
Canteen Fundas: How friends, good and bad, can have a major impact on your life
Pro Tip: Your close friends have a big impact on your life. Convert or drop ‘accomplices’ who hold you back, and add ‘friends’ who help your growth
Rahul’s busy having fun, bhaiyya,’ said Rinku. ‘He’s got new friends.’
‘What’s life without friends, bhaiyya?’ laughed Rahul.
‘True,’ said Rakesh. ‘You know, studies show that people who have got close friends live longer, healthier and happier lives.’
‘See, Rinku,’ said Rahul. ‘Have more friends. You’ll live longer and be happier.’
‘Nope,’ said Rinku. ‘I prefer fewer friends who are there for me.’
‘Arre, you don’t choose friends because they’re useful to you,’ said Rahul. ‘Friends are for fun.’
‘Not so simple, Rahul,’ smiled Rakesh. ‘There’s a saying by Jim Rohn that we’re the average of the five people we meet the most. Tell me, how are your five closest friends affecting you?’
‘My new friends and I mainly hang out at coffee shops,’ said Rahul. ‘Then there’s Rinku and you. Do friends really affect us, bhaiyya?’
‘Yes,’ said Rakesh. ‘We unconsciously start acting like the people we surround ourselves with. So it’s important to choose your close squad of friends carefully. Surround yourself with people better than you — and you get better.’
‘Should we abandon friends who are struggling?’ asked Rahul.
‘Not really,’ said Rakesh. ‘Help them, but not at your own cost. Friendships should make both parties grow.’
‘So how do good friendships work, bhaiyya?’ asked Rinku.
‘Good friendships enable an equal, safe and secure space to confide,’ said Rakesh. ‘They act as a safety net. How do your friendships compare?’
‘My close friends are good, bhaiyya,’ said Rinku.
‘Errr, couple of my friends are unreliable, bhaiyya,’ said Rahul. ‘What do I do, bhaiyya?’
‘The book Change Anything offers a nice solution,’ said Rakesh. ‘It suggests that you convert your ‘accomplices’ — those who are holding you back in your current pattern — into ‘friends’ who support your aspirations.’
‘Wow,’ said Rinku. ‘And bhaiyya, whom should we avoid?’
‘Those who make you feel lesser,’ said Rakesh. ‘Those who betray, insult, lie, abuse, push you to take unnecessary risks, are negative, dependent, they don’t listen, meddle and break promises.’