This post is a response to Leo’s great article; ‘The people you spend time with‘. Skim read it if you haven’t, but the premise is simple:
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.
– Jim Rohn
It appears true, however it ignores the recent communication miracle that is the internet. Jim Rohn was born in 1930 – and as such only a small proportion of his life was spent with the internet.
Prior to the internet the information available to us was limited to the, typically small, social circles we surrounded ourselves with, the books we could lay our hands on, and the messages the media chose to broadcast. It’s now possible to access information from all over the globe and opinions/perspectives we previously would have never known existed. This allows us to diverge from the local social status quo.
An example, using myself, is that I share a lot of opinions with the rest of the world. I know this because I read about these people on the internet. In my local social circle however these opinions could be deemed bizarre and outlandish – it’s only through the internet that I feel part of a wider social circle.
Perhaps the phrase quoted above can now be extended to:
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with, and the information you choose to consume.
Not quite as catchy! But the impact of the internet shouldn’t be ignored.