Choose Those Who Make You Happy


     As humans, we like to think of ourselves as individuals who are in full control of who we become. But there is a factor that we may not realize has such a crucial role in contributing to the bits and pieces that make us who we actually are. It’s those people that we surround ourselves with who have such a large impact on our character.

     “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with,” says American entrepreneur and motivational speaker Jim Rohn.

     When I read this, the first thought that plopped into my reflection zone was, “Who are those people in my life?” The second thought to arrive there was whether or not those people have traits that I’m okay with adopting.  We all have those friends or coworkers that have viewpoints fully capable of making you cringe and nod your head to avoid conflict. We generally stand by and don’t see this behavior as harmful, because we are not the ones directly dispersing those energies into the world. But when you think about it, the more that we are exposed to those negative things, the more desensitized we become to them—thus the more likely we are to continue to engage in behaviors we don’t necessarily agree with.

    So what our job should be is to become the hiring managers of our social circles. In some cases, I’m thinking becoming the firing manager may be the way that this process will need to begin. In other words, in order to keep your garden fruitful, you need to weed out the plants that are detrimental its growth first.

     There are many groups of people who have already caught on to this positivity domino effect. They have chosen to slide head first into communities that weed out the bad before it can even start to root itself. CrossFit EP and PL are a perfect example of this. The “Work Hard, Be Nice Project,” was able to thrive so quickly because it was an obvious choice for a gym motto where everyone involved could truly relate and stand behind it.

     This is just one example of how choosing to place yourself around those who lift you up and motivate you to be better for yourself and for your community can allow you to grow. The reality is, we will never be able to escape the negative people that we encounter on a day-to-day basis, but what we can control is whom we let into our world when we are enjoying our free time. Seeing someone digress because of a toxic relationship is truly heartbreaking and it’s even harder when that person is you.

     Challenge yourself to break away from comfort zones and gravitate towards people who you would be more than happy to let it rub off on you. Because after all, there are enough negative influences in this world, and there is only one you. So make your choices wisely.

Hayley Headshot.JPG

Written By: Hayley Sutherland

Posted on August 29, 2017 .

Do It With Passion or Not At All

      Finding your passion. Realistically what does that even mean? For some of us it’s a flavor of gum that tickles our tongue with mango and other exotic fruits. For others it’s the feeling you get when your partner inspires you to connect with them in the moment of intimacy. But the truest form of passion is the one that is hardest to come by. This can be realized very quickly when someone asks you the infamous question, “So what do you like to do for fun?”

      You stand there and frantically wrack your brain to find just one little nugget that will make you seem like an exciting human being. And while we all may be able to rattle off some hobbies, what sets those things apart are the details we want to expand on even further. A topic that can make your pupils dilate and your heart squeeze a little faster just knowing that you get to share it with someone else. What truly makes you feel connected with your inner self and the outer world?

      I think what makes this concept hard to dive into, is the reality of what actually takes up our time because it is financially crucial or obligatory. We are all busy in our own ways and I sometimes feel as if I am an ant working within an anthill. Running around alongside my community members and building until the product is either complete or squashed by a giant sneaker. Now this may be a stretch, but it’s an image that we can visualize.

      When I was a younger version of myself, I had this passion for storytelling. My family would say that I was technically a bit of a fibber, but this is my side of the tale so I can label it as I please. But it would get me into binds with teachers from speaking out of turn, get me landed on the “maybe” list for a competitive soccer team because I was distracting other players—you name it. But that’s how I know it is something hard wired into my system. It was the version of word vomit before “Mean Girls” came onto the screen & I have concluded it has more of a positive effect rather than the few negative setbacks it caused as an adolescent. As I matured, I understood the concept that there is a time and a place for everything. And as I talked about in my last post, it is now my time and my place to evolve as a storyteller.

      There are so many fantastic qualities that we all possess, whether or not we are given the time of day to show them off. But what is so neat about life is that sometimes you can push past those boundaries and say screw it. As long as there is good intention and a little passion behind what you are expressing—no one can stop you from feeling satisfied about it. Whatever it is, start drawing more, dancing even if your mama gave you absolutely no rhythm and make some room for the things that move you.

Written By: Hayley Sutherland

Posted on August 6, 2017 .