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There are a lot of misconceptions out there about success. Really, when it comes down to it, I don’t think there are many hard and fast rules that apply to everyone. But, one thing you should keep in mind is that those who you surround yourself with will impact your success. Success means something different to everyone, but the same general principles still apply.

Forbes says there are five people you need in your life: the facilitator, the playmaker, the encourager, the bruiser, and the rock. I like their descriptions, but what it all comes down to is one simple rule:surround yourself with good people, people who are doing things with their lives, who are not unmoving and unchanging chess pieces. It’s easy to become comfortable when you’re around mediocrity, especially if it makes you look better, but you reap what you sow.

Just like it’s okay to end friendships if they aren’t bringing you happiness, it’s okay to remove yourself from individuals who are not helping you reach your success. One of my closest friends frequently reminds me that friends are a direct link to success; I brushed this off until this summer. I was worried it would make me a cold person to not be friends with someone just because they didn’t have aspirations similar to mine. But it doesn’t mean that I love them any less as humans, just that we don’t offer what the other needs at this point in time. My oh-so-wise friend has encouraged me, without intentionally doing so, to start working out, to eat healthier, and to love myself more. With both of us working so hard on ourselves, we have been able to achieve our short term goals on the way to our long term goals in ways that our other friends have been unable to because they have no personal vested interest in what we are working toward.

So, find the people you want to be like. Find the people who are positive and persevere in the face of adversity and obstacles. These are the individuals who will make all the difference in reaching your goals and crushing them. Accountability is a powerful thing, and it won’t always be smiles and laughter, but having those people who you can rely on will make a world of difference and separate greatness from averageness.

Darby is a Gettysburg College class of 2020 student who is majoring in psychology and studio art, minoring in neuroscience, and doing a pre-med track.  She enjoys anything related to Disney, shopping, reading, Navy football, art, and music, as well as spending time with her family, friends, and church community. 
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