There is a famous quote that says “you will be the same person in five years as you are today, except for 2 things: the people you meet and the books you read.” I couldn’t agree more with this saying. In fact, the books you read and the people you meet directly determine who you will be. It is crazy to me how many people never pick up a book after high school or college, nor meet anyone outside their circle of friends. Yet, these same people complain about where they are in life. Seems like a simple solution to me. Pick up a book and meet some people. All kidding aside, this is how you get better, but let’s talk about why.
How Books Make You Better
Obviously, reading books is a way to gain more knowledge about a certain subject or discipline. This goes without saying. However, what most don’t realize is that reading changes the way you think. When you change the way you think, you change the way you see the world. Life is about perspective and seeing things through the noise created by society. If we do not challenge our mind to grow by reading, our perspective never changes. We live in tunnel of seeing things one way and one way only. This is no way to live.
However, when you begin to read on a consistent basis and expand your mind, opportunities appear. These opportunities may have been there all along, you just now have the perspective to see them. I look at my own life and see the truth in this. I was always a reader, but I really began to get serious about it in my early thirties, devouring book after book on every kind of topic. Personal development, business, real estate, you name it. The more I read, the more opportunities I saw. My perspective changed and therefore, so did my life. All from simply reading books.
How People Make You Better
Aside from the books you read, the people you meet directly impact your life. Expanding your circle expands your life. It boggles my mind how many people are ok with staying within the circle of friends and acquaintances they have had for years. They don’t like change. In situations like this, you find that most people in that group think the same and are around the same socioeconomic status. Groupthink takes over and people get comfortable in their circle.
But when you expand that circle, you again expand your perspective. The more people you meet, the more viewpoints you experience. When you see different viewpoints of the world, we challenge our mind to expand to higher levels. As we grow our circles of influence, we also grow our opportunities. Again, looking at my life, this is evident. The more people I meet and network with, the more opportunities present themselves to me. I have been given many wonderful opportunities over the past 5 years just from expanding my circle of friends. Now, this does not mean that I got rid of y closest friends; it just means that the role they play in life changes as we expand as people.
So, if you want to be better in 5 years, start picking up books and meeting new people. Both of these things are easy to do, but also easy not to do. Therein lies the problem.