Circle Time

Who is in your inner circle? A couple of months back, comedian Kevin Hart and reality star Safaree Samuels came forward with stories of how their so-called friends had betrayed them. Hart’s infidelity was captured on camera by his childhood friend and seemingly sold to the highest bidder. A friend of Safaree, who has also been around him for years, set him up to be robbed at gunpoint. These were individuals that exploited their friends for a quick dollar, and were willing to throw away years of friendship for profit.

These back-to-back occurrences had me thinking -- how well do you know your circle of friends? Yes, they will (hopefully) treat you to dinner, or drinks, buy you Christmas presents and give you a shout out on your birthday on social media, but how will things down in other situations? For example, if you mention to your friends that you would like to start a new endeavor, will they be supportive in all aspects, offering words of encouragement, critique and support as needed? Or will they criticize and downplay your dreams? If you become engaged to be married, with they be your biggest fan and wish you a lifetime of love and happiness, or will they secretly hate you behind your back?

From my experience, true friends support you, uplift you, and call you out on your shit if needed. No one wants a tribe of “yes men,” or a stagnant group a friends that are content on staying exactly where they are - physically, mentally or emotionally. There are so many Instagram quotes reminding us to be careful of fake friends, new friends, and friends secretly disguised as enemies. Would you be able to detect a rat in your crew?

Bishop T.D. Jakes always says, "If you’re the smartest person in your circle of friends, you need a new circle.”  This quote has some weight to it - all tribes need someone that is a specialist in a certain area. You need a friend to go to for relationship advice, a friend that offers great financial advice, professional/career advice, a prayer warrior, and so on. If everyone in your crew can offer great advice about stocks, portfolios, and 401ks, it might be time to diversify your crew (pun intended). Life has taught me that the people you choose to spend the most time around, and the relationships you cultivate are a direct reflection of you. At this point in my life, I only choose to surround myself with God-fearing, loving, positive and supportive individuals. Our time on this planet is too short to waste on people that don’t want you to win.

I’m good, luv. Enjoy.

If you’re the smartest person in your circle of friends, you need a new circle.
— Bishop T.D. Jakes