- The books we read, and ...
- The people we associate with.
The types of people we associate with is also critical in how we think about ourselves and even where we end up in life. Take our income level, for example. Add up the annual salaries of your several closest friends and divide it by that number and you'll likely have your annual income. We are who we hang around.
What this means is that we generally gravitate toward five broad categories of thinking and living based on the books we read and the people we hang around. According to Steven Siebold (author of 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class), those categories are poverty, working, middle, upper, and world class thinking.
Those with a poverty or working class mentality talk about (and mostly grumble about) the past. They are constantly blaming others for their failures, for not getting ahead, for their bad breaks in life. Could be a boss, a parent, a teacher. They got screwed over by someone and that's why they are where they are at. It's a victim mindset.
Those with a middle class mentality talk about other people - comparing up or down and always trying to position themselves a little better than their peers. It's either keep up with the Joneses or it's bragging about their latest toy. The middle class have also deluded themselves into thinking that they are where they're at because of their hard work. Most middle class folks thought they hit a double when in fact they were born on second base.
Those with an upper, or better yet, world class mentality talk about ideas. They are always looking for ways to grow, increase, become better, build, influence more, impact more, do more, be more. And so they are reading books that help them think better. They associate with positive, excited people and avoid negative, limiting people.
Questions to Ponder:
- Are you focused on the past, other people, or big ideas?
- What books are you reading that support the direction you want to go?
- What people in your life do you need to limit your exposure to?
- When will you begin to implement the answers to these questions?