Managing the Company You Keep

As an entrepreneur, the people around you can infuse you with energy and motivation, or they can suck it out of you.


Editor’s note: This is the fifth installment of an eight part series entitled “Self-Awareness for the Emerging Entrepreneur” part 1 Refining the Art of Saying Yes or No, part 2: 4 Tips to Achieve Positive Habits, part 3 three: 4 Language Shifts for Success, part 4: Identifying Patterns in Self Talk- 3 Scenarios

Stepping into the New Year is the perfect time to re-asses what is working for you, and where you can better manage your energies. As an Entrepreneur you are giving your all to your business. That means that every ounce of energy you give to all facets of your life – your business, your family, fun- all of it – needs to be serving you best way possible. One of the areas that is critical for Entrepreneurs to manage is the company you keep. The people around you can infuse you with energy and motivation, or they can suck it out of you.

Take note of three groups of people you want to be around:

People Who Will Lift You Higher

One of my favorite quotes is Oprah’s “Surround yourself with only people who will lift you higher.”

This is a must as an Entrepreneur!

This means is that you will keep people around you who will support your effort, determination and flight on wild ideas. Those people who will stay up with you burning the midnight oil to hit the next level. It also means that you will keep people around you who are courageous enough to challenge you when and where you need it.

Those who are courageous enough to have uncomfortable conversations with you that are needed periodically. Those who will remind you to eat when you’ve been working 9 hours non-stop. And those who will remind you that while the Entrepreneur life does demand a selfish tint, you still must remember to celebrate others’ successes and milestones.

People Who Know The Life You Are Living As an Entrepreneur

In graduate school one of my professors taught me about Secret Sharers. Secret Sharers are those friends or colleagues who are in similar positions of leadership in their companies as you are, and with whom you can share the excitement and the woes of being in your position. When they are from a different company they can provide a more objective perspective, or listening ear. Because, it really does get lonely at the top.

As much as family and friends love you and support your journey, if they are not Entrepreneurs themselves, there will be moments they just don’t understand. Find a Secret Sharer or find a group for Entrepreneurs who meet regularly.

People Who Have Achieved What You Aim to Achieve

This category is important because there is a difference between understanding things intellectually and knowing how to embody them. People who have earned revenues in the millions will embody success and wealth differently than those who are still working on that goal.

Those who have been in business for over ten years will embody longevity as a business owner differently than someone who has been in business for only three years. What do you want to achieve and who has already achieved it?

Now put yourself where you can watch their interactions, observe their thought processes, or learn from their mistakes.

It’s a new year. Surround yourself with Champs.

In my next post of this series “Self-Awareness for the Emerging Entrepreneur,” I talk about getting past the Imposter Syndrome. Until then, Stay Limitless!

Related articles:

Identifying Patterns in Self Talk- 3 Scenarios

Self-Awareness for the Emerging Entrepreneur

Work Hard? Take Time to Thank Yourself

Liz Garcia
Liz is a Speaker, Life Coach and Leadership Trainer with Stay Limitless, which she founded in 2011. Liz has been coaching and developing leaders for over 12 years, 10 of those working in the educational non-profit arena. She has guided and overseen the development of over 1,000 leaders. Liz recently served as a Group Facilitator for the Latina Global Executive Leadership Program founded by negotiation expert Dr. Yasmin Davidds and run in partnership with the USC Marshall School of Business. Liz is a former member of the Boards of Directors for the California Latino Caucus Institute’s Madrinas Padrinos Leadership Program and the National Latina Business Women Association – LA Chapter. Liz has a Bachelors in Sociology from San Jose State University and a Masters in Education from Harvard University. You can find more about Liz and sign up for her free newsletter.

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