“If you want to be better, then you have to surround yourself with people that are BETTER than you.”


People with self-esteem and a desire to succeed in life are never daunted in the presence of geniuses, beauty queens, billionaires or champions. All the while, the winner is thinking in the back of his mind, “What can I learn from these people? How can I network with these people to boost my own career? What common ground do we have that puts us in the same league? Can I envision the success that these people enjoy for my own life?”


If I want to be a successful business entrepreneur, I’m not going to hang out with weirdoes and drug addicts. You ARE the company you keep! If I want to be happy, I’m not going to sit in a round robin with a group of self-ascribed pessimists and manic depressives. If I want to win a marathon, I’m going to hang out with like-minded marathon runners, not a bunch of McCouchPotatoes. You see where I’m going with this?


Here’s a star example: Heavyweight Champion Boxer Mike Tyson was once at the top of his game. “Iron Mike” won 50 out of 58 fights, including 44 knock-outs. To date, he holds the record for the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF world heavyweight titles. Even after he was convicted of rape and sent to prison for three years, people were willing to forgive his indiscretions because he was, simply put, “the baddest man on the planet.” Over the course of his career, Tyson earned $300 million – which would be comfortable money for most Americans to live off.


Yet, Tyson declared bankruptcy in 2003 and wound up living on the streets. Mike’s problem was that he didn’t surround himself with a good support network. If Mike hung out in the company of wise money-savvy millionaires, even they would tell him that a guy who takes a limo and body guards wherever he goes – even if it’s just for a joy ride around town to pick up some hookers – will eventually run out of money. “You can’t eat filet mignon, lobster and $10,000 bottles of Champagne every night. That lifestyle is just not sustainable for a retired boxer.”


Mike’s problem was that, instead of hanging out with other professional boxers, trainers and winners, he was busy PAYING PEOPLE to follow him around and continuously compliment him with “You’re The MAN, Mike!” Instead of all this lavish bullshit praise, what the man really needed was someone fierce, someone competitive, someone who would constantly push him to be better. When his career ended, Mike wanted to hang out with people who were beneath him so he could be the king. He hung out with losers because “The drug dealers sympathize with me,” as he told ESPN in 2004.

Insecure girls choose unattractive friends to make themselves look better. Insecure people choose to date others who are less intelligent to appear smarter. Stop and take a look at your inner circle. Do you keep them around because they praise you and make you look better? Or do you keep them around because they are engaging equals who make you a better person with their intelligence, wit and similar drive for success? Here’s my advice: Lose the lackeys now before their loser mentality becomes contagious. If you get out while you still can, it will never come to the day where you have to bite someone’s ear off to prove your mightiness.