Are you familiar with the concept that we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with?
The statement was most notably credited to motivational speaker Jim Rohn, relating to the "law of averages" and the theory that the result of any given situation will be the average of all of the potential outcomes.
Captivation Agency has been a strategic vendor partner to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties for over 15 years and this past week, I was fortunate to have spent time with my colleagues and dear friends at the 116th Annual Conference for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in Chicago.
During our time, many of us shared the opportunity to attend a breakout session that was led by the charismatic, Stacey Flowers - an accomplished entrepreneur, writer, speaker, coach, and mom.
Building on Jim Rohn's statement from above, Stacey leaned further into the subject, explaining in her talk that, in order to drive your professional/personal success and happiness, those 5 key people that Jim mentioned should be represented by the following personas:
- A cheerleader
- A mentor
- A coach
- A friend, and
- A peer
She then began describing the above personas to the audience - assigning a finger on her hand for each. Let's take a deeper look at them below.
The Cheerleader (Your Thumb)
This person's sole role in your life is to route for you in every way possible. They are there to encourage you and celebrate every win, every obstacle you overcome. Although they are your biggest fan, they do not provide any guidance along the way, as that is the role of our next persona - the "mentor".
The Mentor (Your Pointer Finger)
Stacey shares that the role of your mentor is to understand where you are wanting to go, and working with you to help get there.
If you begin to veer off the decided path, your mentor is there to bring you back to center, and re-align your focus on your target goals and ultimate destination.
Unlike our next persona, their role in your life is one of guidance.
The Coach (Your Middle Finger)
Holding up her middle finger to the room Stacey shares "Now, the coach is by design on this finger because he/she is meant to make you a little uncomfortable..."
After a brief pause for some chuckles from the audience, she goes on to explain that the role of the coach is to help you maximize your potential, and make things happen.
Your coach is someone who will understand your goals and while pushing you to achieve them, he/she will also ensure you are thinking about how your efforts impact the rest of your team.
This may involve encouraging you to try a new position when they see something in you that you don't.
The Friend (Your Ring Finger)
This persona is represented by your ring finger as it is the only one of your fingers that has a vein which connects all the way to your heart. The role of the friend is to know you for you, who you truly are, your quirks, and what makes you tick.
They are the one who sees the [real] you and loves you regardless. When things get tough, you can confide in them, without shame or prejudice.
The Peer (Your Pinky Finger)
Like the people you might find yourself with at high tea (pinkys out!), your peer is there to help you in social situations.
Unlike your friend, your peer is someone who resides in the same industry you do. They know and understand the struggles you will incur, because those same struggles have also happened to them.
Stacey goes on to say that "your friend is always connected to your truest heart's desire, and your peer will always keep your head in the game."
But What If I Have One Person that Represents 2 of the Personas Above?
As the law of averages from before states, you are the sum of those people you spend the most time with, so by lowering the number of people, you lower your average of support.
It's also important to remember that assigning more than one role per person places additional strain on your relationships.
Do You Tell People What Role They Play in Your Life?
Ideally, you wouldn't tell the people around you that they hold a specific role or position in your life (like you've just given them a job title), as it can create additional stress and strain for them trying to uphold this newly revealed responsibility, when in reality, what they have been doing all along has been exactly enough.
What About "Cyber" Roles?
During her talk, Stacey mentioned having Beyonce as her "cyber mentor". Although she and Beyonce have never met (yet), nor have they ever talked, Stacey asks herself questions and imagines how Beyonce would answer them - in the role of a mentor.
Putting It to Practice
Since sharing this talk with others, as well as thinking more about it myself, a common thread seems to be that only a very small amount of people can definitively account for all 5 roles off the top of their head.
BUT, that's not the point. The point is, now that you know what to look for, it will be easier to find and fill those roles.
Thank You Stacey
Thank you Stacey for your time and insight. I, along with my colleagues were touched by your words and will continue to share them, while also striving to maximize our own lives by assembling our cheerleaders, our mentors, our coaches, our friends, and our peers.
Thank You to Our BGC Family
I'd like to take a quick moment to thank the amazing individuals representing the Boys & Girls Club, specifically, those from Sarasota and DeSoto Counties.
Whether you realize it or not, so many of you have occupied the roles Stacey outlined above, to not only the children, youth, and fellow staff of our community, but also to me.
You are my family and I am grateful for you each and every day. Thank you.
More About Stacey Flowers
As stated on her website: Stacey flowers is an American entrepreneur, motivational speaker, writer, and coach.
Known for her captivating display of excellence and magic from the stage, Stacey Flowers is a powerful blend of energetic wisdom, charisma, and sharp intellect.
Determined to build a life of success and incomparable joy after becoming a teenage mother, Stacey was first a student of what she now teaches. Her charge is to influence amazing people to be more amazing.
She has a reputation for inspiring personal revolutions of change and unapologetic boldness in people around the world. Stacey's self-development approach promotes creating change from the inside out.
Leaving audiences across the globe feeling educated, liberated, and entertained, with her truth and tactics on how to heal your heart to reshape your mind so you can rebuild your life.
The 5 Key People, her TEDx Talk that amassed over a million views, delivers the best of both worlds: compelling storytelling that emotionally connects with insightful truths that birth a desire for more wholehearted, intentional living.
Want to Learn More About Jim Rohn?
Thank you for reading and make it a great week!