Surround yourself with people who inspire you. Surround yourself with people who make you strive to be better than the person you were yesterday.
I’m lucky enough to have been born into a pretty inspirational family. Both my parents are professors who got their advanced degrees while taking care of four children and working full-time jobs. I remember making my way downstairs for a midnight snack and seeing the reflection of laptop light on my dad’s face. I remember curling up next to my mom while she rifled through a nasty stack of books in her lap and at her feet. And that’s in the past. They inspire me every day.
My little sister Trinity is practically my hero. I have never met anyone with more of a DGAF attitude. She’s got an old soul and a wise mind, but the skill and coolness of a hyper pop-culture-aware 15 year-old wonder. I see nothing but greatness in her future.
My younger brother and littlest sister are always up to something. My baby sister Mehkenna loves nail polish, so she got a book on cool styles and learns new ways to paint her itsy, bitsy fingernails nearly every day. My brother draws pictures, creates plots to movies, makes stop-motion films with Legos, teaches himself chords on his guitar, and writes songs—the list is endless.
And don’t even get me started on my friends. I have friends who want to dance on Broadway, who want to save the environment single-handedly, who want to become great choreographers of our time, who want to fix what’s wrong with our nation, who want to create cinematic masterpieces that incite awe and wonder.
I’ve been around those other kinds of people—the kind who make you feel like you’re not good enough or that make you feel ridiculous for loving the things you love. I wish them well in their own lives, but I also wish them far away from me. These people do nothing but chip away at already fragile notions of self. You don’t need that. Nobody needs that.
What you need is to surround yourself with people who make you feel the same way a gorgeous sunset melting over the ocean’s horizon makes you feel. You need to surround yourself with people who will laugh at your jokes and tell it to you straight and sit with you in silence.
Surround yourself with people who inspire you and you’ll be mind-blown at the things you can create together.