BIRDS OF A FEATHER: WATCH THE COMPANY YOU KEEP

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“Is it true that you are what you associate yourself with.”

“Watch the company and the crowd you bring.” If you’ve never heard this before, I’m sure you’ve heard of this one. “Birds of a feather flock together.” These are a couple of the statements of advice people are given about the people they choose to hang around. But, are these statements of advice always bad to live by in life? Is there ever a reason to flock with the same group of people? Well, in my opinion it’s all about the context of the reasoning behind flocking. What are some of the goods and bad of flocking with a group?

When looking at flocking in the same group of people, what about your career circle. If you are a professional in your field, you are far more likely going to hang around those in that field. Or you might even find yourself associating with people in a related field of interest. For example, a Nurse Practitioner and a doctor could be found hanging out in a group with other physicians. Maybe even top level physicians might associate with executive heads of the hospital. The executive may not be a doctor, but a top doctor is in the same realm.

What about flocking in the same group of people into the same or similar interest. If you are into traveling, you are more than likely going to find yourself associating with people who enjoy hiking, biking, and other leisure activities. Or let’s say you’re in a group of people who enjoy the single life of dating in a big city. You’re going to most likely hang with people who love the nightlife of clubbing and going to bars. But what about the opposite. What about the negative connotation that comes with flocking in the same group?

This is some good advice for a young teen or early adulthood male or female. When you’re young you think the people you’re hanging with can do no wrong. That’s until they start to engage in behavior that is harmful to them and those around them. As a young child you make friends and each of you take on these different personas as you age. So the person you know at 7 years of age won’t be that person 14 years, as they will at 21 years, or even at 30 years. So flocking in the same group might not last from childhood through adulthood. People who maintain these long term relationships are few and far between.

Why is that? Why do we move on from people we were once close with at one age, but not now? Because flocking with the same group might have to change. You might even flock in a group that you didn’t get along with during childhood that you do as an adult. Meaning the group you didn’t associate with as a teenager, you might learn to like as adults. A lot of changing your flock has to do with maturing and taking on different interest and viewpoints.

And that’s what it all boils down to, viewpoints and lifestyles. Flocking in the same group can be good if you are all headed down the right paths. But if you’re in a group that is not going anywhere in life they might be a burden. And hanging with them will further hinder you from growing.

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