From the time we are born until we die most of us are surrounded by stimuli. Be it parents, peers, colleagues, friends, relatives, neighbours or employers, we are always within a circle of influence. Early in life it may not be possible to choose who we spend time with, for how long and at what level. We can hardly choose our parents or where we were born for instance. We have no control over siblings or relatives. Teachers in school are a given. However as we grow, we learn to recognise that we can actually choose the people we associate with and who therefore influence us.
If we are lucky, we may have more than one mother! By this what I mean is that older women of influence may come into our lives. It may be an aunt, grandmother, friend’s mother and so on. I was very lucky to be associated with some very strong women from a very young age. The alpha-women in my youth probably shaped a large part of what I am today. What I took away from each of them is special and selective. My relationship with them has also changed as I age as equations transform and the connection needs to be re-defined.
One may for instance admire and appreciate the kindness or large heartedness of a maternal aunt or the driven passion of a friend’s mother. We can imbibe both if we so wish to. We can actually choose our influences.
Friends tend to be a significant influence in most peoples lives. Choosing ones friends carefully is crucial. With time, we may even need to step back from certain relationships as we come to terms with their fruitlessness. We’ve all been there. We recognise that a certain relationship is not good for us and may struggle for a while contemplating what to do. This does not necessarily mean one is being heartless. We must do what is best for ourselves and also what brings out the best in our own personality (and surely better for the other as well).
Draining, toxic relationships are not constructive. There’s really no time to waste in this short life on such angst. We have to find better use for our time & energy
We do not move through the world alone. Being aware of things & people we allow into our lives is important. It’s a mark of wisdom to choose to spend time in those places that inspire & energise us and associate with those people that uplift us. Whether at work or in our personal lives these positive influences will inspire us to be our greatest selves and lead our largest lives.
Here’s what I believe – If we seek and receive empowerment from another, we have to “give” in return. This may not necessarily be related to that very person, but, I think we have to complete the circle of giving! That’s the law of nature. We may choose to inspire, support or benefit someone else. The opportunity will always present itself. We just need to be open to it.
Dr. Sheela Nambiar MD. Obgyn
Fitness & Lifestyle Consultant NAFC (USA)
Author – Get Size Wise, Gain To Lose