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Friends As Motivators


In Hugh MacLeod's book "Ignore Everybody" he talks about how new ideas alter the power balance in our relationships. A few years ago I was bouncing an idea off a friend.  I could hardly contain my excitement as I laid out an overview of where I felt this project was headed over the next few years.  My friend sat quietly.

Soon, he interrupted, asking me why I thought I had the right to do something like that.  I was taken aback.   He continued, saying I had no experience in that area and besides, I was just a redneck from Georgia.  He wrapped it up by saying I was doing just fine right now.  Then my friend changed the subject. 

It took me a while to understand what happened that day.   Your friends have a view of you, and that view has served them well.  They’ve built their life around you being a certain way.  Making drastic changes will shatter their beliefs, upset the norm, and impact their world.  Like it or not, you play a role in their lives and your new crazy plans will screw things up. 

So the next time you get a lukewarm reception with your new idea, just smile and understand all they heard you say was “I’m changing” and they don’t like it.