How to Choose Positive Peers

by Lauri Revilla

    The kind of people who surround you often determine who you will become. Being friends with positive peers is essential for your physical, mental and emotional well-being. Finding individuals who will make a positive contribution to your life is an ongoing process. It involves analyzing your own values, goals and priorities and choosing relationships that are a reflection of what you want in life.

    Detox Your Relationships

    If you are going to surround yourself with people who help you grow and improve as a person, you must begin by eliminating those who put you down and have a negative influence on your life. Analyze your relationships and ask yourself if you are friends with any people who make you feel less valuable, lead you to make bad decisions or take advantage of you. You might discover that some relationships are just not worth having. Accept the fact that you don't have to continue with these friendships. Allow yourself to create a distance from individuals who might be having a toxic effect on your life.

    Seek Positive Peers at Work

    You likely spend most of your time with the people with whom you work. A positive work environment and having good relationships with your colleagues is crucial for your well-being. In a study published in the 2011 issue of the "Journal of Health Psychology," researchers at Tel Aviv University found that a lack of emotional support at work resulted in a 140 percent increased risk of dying in the next 20 years. Seek out co-workers who are positive, well-liked and dedicated. They will help you grow professionally and make your workday more enjoyable. Avoid associating with employees who are constantly complaining, lazy or unethical.

    Find the Type of Person You Strive to Be

    Relationships have a substantial influence on your thoughts, behaviors, decisions and lifestyle. The "Health Barometer 2011" reports that 43 percent of individuals feel that their family and social networks have the greatest impact on their lifestyles when it comes to health. Over time, people often become similar to the people with whom they associate. Seek out individuals who are what you strive to be. If you want to become a successful person, surround yourself with people who are lucrative in their careers. Individuals who are unmotivated will not encourage you to pursue challenging goals. On the other hand, successful friends will help you make connections on your road to success.

    Look for Happy People

    If you want to live a more fulfilling life, seek out individuals who are satisfied with their own. A study published in the December 2008 issue of "BMJ" found that people who are surrounded by many happy people are more likely to be happy in the future. The study also found that happiness has a ripple effect on those who are in close physical proximity to a happy person. Seek out individuals who live in the moment and have an attitude of gratitude. People who are healthy, spend time doing enjoyable activities and have meaningful relationships tend to be happier. Spend time with those who are fun, enjoyable and cheerful. By becoming a more positive person, you will also spread happiness to those around you.

    About the Author

    Lauri Revilla has been writing articles on mental health, wellness, relationships and lifestyle for more than six years. She moved to San Antonio, Texas, from Mexico in 2006. She holds a Master of Science in Psychology from Our Lady of the Lake University.

    Photo Credits

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