When my children were growing up and building friendships with their peers, I used to tell them to not be taken by friends who brought negative influences into their lives. I reminded them that while some of these friendships were temporary, the consequences of negative influences and wrong decision making could potentially affect them for years to come. Chances were these friends would no longer be around to help pick up the pieces when life became real.

In whom we invest is important. Sometimes we have to be the person who walks the road less traveled so that distractions and negative influences do not hinder our growth and progress in life. It’s very easy to go with the crowd and do the mundane. What’s not easy is maintaining discipline and consistency toward goals that lead to our hopes and dreams.  What if every day were lived with purpose or taking steps to achieve a goal, even a small one, what a difference this could make!

Two lessons we can learn:

  • Choose your influences wisely – sometimes it’s necessary to walk away from relationships that consistently bring negative influence. It’s good to evaluate whether a relationship is one that moves you forward or one that holds you back. Keep in mind that misery really does love company and some relationships do not encourage positive change.
  • Be a person of good influence – be the person who works hard at rising above while exemplifying encouragement to others. Work hard at not falling short of doing good; you will reap what you sow. Keep in mind that cream rises to the top and this takes effort. Live life with intention so that your path is clear not only for yourself, but to also help others along the way. You can’t help others out of the mire if you’re stuck there yourself.

Sometimes loneliness accompanies walking this journey but that’s not always a bad thing. Better to journey alone for a short time then to look back and wish time were still on your side. Every day is an opportunity for growth and choices are important. Make the best of the time you have and don’t settle. Life is built on moments and there will always be a new chapter to write.

 Ana Leonardy, CPLC