Why is it important to surround yourself with people who encourage you?

So, I’ve been away for a long time. I guess some are saying, Thank GOD for that! 🙂

I’ve been wondering about something about human nature that puzzles me big time. Many of us, myself included, know that something is good for us – and yet, we do not follow that. Be it an exercise regime, or a proper healthy lifestyle, or behaviours – many times we do not follow it – knowing full well that we are doing ourselves a disservice.

So, is it laziness, or do we revel in wallowing in the mess that we are in? Or is it plain inertia?

I was doing some more thinking and then came across something I had read a long time ago. This is called the FEED principle. For mastering any new skill / behaviour, we need to follow and apply FEED:

F – Focus

E – Effort / Energy

E – Effortlessness / Efficiency

D – Determination.

What FEED says is simple:

For any new skill or behaviour, we need to first have Focus. We need to focus on the things that we need to do, on a regular basis. We need to identify all the actions that we need to perform, thoughts we need to think and so on.

Once we have identified the things that we need to Focus on, we need to expend Effort / Energy. It is as simple as when we learnt to walk! When we started walking, we were all very unsteady and fell down quite easily and often. However, since this was a skill we truly wanted to master (and maybe we were quite eager and energetic, as a child, to learn) we kept at it. While we were at this stage, we also kept focus on the manner in which we walked, impediments that we had to navigate around and the like.

However, once we went past the conscious walking stage, we became Efficient and the action of walking became Effortless. We then moved on to doing all kinds of stunts and improve on the initial “walking” – such as running, skipping, jumping and the like.

However, the one attribute that we displayed right through this process is that of Determination. We did not give up when we fell down. We kept at it, with the greatest Determination till we mastered the skill.

It is also probably a telling truth that people around us, were extremely encouraging of our efforts. When we fell down the first time, people around us encouraged us and helped us to attempt it again. This gave us the necessary impetus to keep at it, until we succeeded.

How is it that parents who are so supportive and encouraging when it comes to teaching their children to walk or to talk (both exceptionally hard skills to teach to a being that does not even communicate properly), become extremely critical or impatient with their offspring in other areas of life?

How is it that as children we are ever eager and curious to learn new things, and that when we grow up, we do not have the same energy or inclination to learn?

It is therefore very important that we remain “childlike” in our quest for knowledge and for learning new skills. As a friend of mine, Raj Sharma, would say – “One must always be child like, and never childish” – I guess this just about sums up the attitude that is needed for constant and appropriate learning to take place.

So, this brings me to the point – it is extremely necessary to surround ourselves with people who encourage us in our achievement of goals. Be it a small goal restricted to one’s own behaviour, or one that looks at changing the world, it is paramount to have people around us, who will encourage us.

So, if you want to succeed in inculcating a new (good) habit, or to learn and master a new skill, find those people who will support you through encouragement. Those who are mediocre, will always attempt to pull down the one that wants to break free of mediocrity and move into excellence.

And with that, I shall say, more power to you! And may you succeed in all your endeavors! And yes, thanks for stopping by!





2 thoughts on “Why is it important to surround yourself with people who encourage you?

  1. GS Sir excellent post. This is so very true and i have a question, how do we build a ensouraging group if peers in a organization. one of the issues i have is distraction, i get distracted very fast and try to do too many things at once. even though i know its not going to work to my advantage but not able to over come it. Please guide me how can i over come this.


  2. Good thoughts, Cheenu. Mostly “common sense” – we all know the French Philosopher, Voltaire’s quotation that “Common sense is not so common 🙂 Nevertheless, you have cogently collected these ideas and articulated it well. One thing to consider is to “break the mold” – taking your analogy, what if the kid wants to fly after walking, running, skipping and jumping. My point is that there are limitations and it is best to have the maturity to recognize them.

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