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Drawing inspiration from the people around us

Photo by Hudson Hintze on Unsplash

Whenever we change our behaviours, we do it in two ways. The first is when we actually change our beliefs which leads to a change in our actions and thoughts and consequently, our behaviours. The second and far more common way is when we see a pattern that already matches our beliefs and doesn't involve changing them.

Marketers and product developers, news websites, social media, all rely heavily on the latter way to change our behaviours. Facebook and Instagram shows us photos and updates based on what we like and interact with. Netflix recommends new shows, Spotify recommends new music, Amazon recommends new products, all based on the shows we watch, music we listen to and the products we buy.

And it works ever so well for them that they continue to invest in data science to enhance these features.

Yet, when we want to change something about us, we look to people who are so different from us - like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg and other celebrities for inspiration. And a lot of the time, the advice we get involves changing our beliefs.

Which is a lot harder to do and which is something we rarely do. So we consume more and more but never make any progress.

But there are people all around us who are very much like us and are making progress in the same areas that we want to be making progress in. Drawing inspiration from them and following their habits is like following a recommendation that Amazon or Netflix makes. It doesn't seem world-changingly different, but over time it leads to progress.

This is the single most important aspect of tribes. This is the simple reason why tribes and communities are so successful.

We are the average of the people we spend time with. We might as well be spending time with people that inspire us.

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