The company we keep has a profound affect on who we become.
If we are unhappy, unproductive, and unsuccessful, in whatever way we define these things, there is a good chance that, if we look at the people around us, we will see the same in them.
Conversely, if we are content, progress driven, and accomplished in our lives, there is a high likelihood that the same is true with the people around us.
It stands to reason, then, that we should actively avoid people whose attitudes, lives, and behaviors we do not want to emulate.
And, we should, therefore, actively seek out the people who we most want to be like.
This does not mean we should cease being ourselves, but it does mean that some of our traits are much more mutable than we may like to think and that the company we keep helps to shape who we will eventually become.
Obviously, a lot of effort is required on our part.
We do not transform overnight through association alone.
But, right association does help to get us started in the proper direction.
Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.
Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Kogen Dojo Self Defense Academy where he teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Photo by Ana.*
*Robert Van Valkenburgh’s black and white photography can be seen at My Darkness To Light
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