b. Gathering associates
There are on the other hand people who have a positive influence on us. Such people encourage us to do what is good or discourage us from doing things that have a negative impact on us. If you want to be like someone then you need to spend time with them. They on the other hand will not find it easy to accept you unless you start changing to be like them.
Remember the TV programme One Foot in the Grave about the pensioner who was always complaining. The main character managed to get into a variety of strange situations that somehow only ever happened to him. It was as if his constant complaining attracted bad things to him. This programme was an exaggerated and funny version of what seems to happen to some people who somehow find things go wrong around them because of their attitudes. One person might find that they are never made redundant in their working life even the prevailing economic conditions has no effect on them. Others are made redundant 4 or 5 years on average, no matter what the prevailing economic conditions. Unless their attitudes change then there is a risk of you being infected by their attitudes if you associate with them.
Talking about television, what sort of programmes do we watch? Do we watch programs that feature achievers like athletes who talk positively about what they have achieved and what they expect to achieve? Do we watch programmes that help us learn how to improve our skills? Do we watch programmes that make us feel as though we are incapable because they feature people who can answer quiz questions that we do not even understand? Do we watch programmes where people are treated in a positive way or do we enjoy watching programmes where some people are criticised or treated in a negative way? Remember our choices of what we watch and listen to affect or infect us in the same way as spending time with real people.
Some people talk about developing an inner circle of associates who encourage us to make improvements. People who help us keep our feet on the ground. People who we are accountable to for different aspects of our life. People who help us to achieve all that we should be doing.