Mike and his groomsmen

Fostering Positive Relationships

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Describe your current place in life using a few words.

No, seriously. I’ll wait.



What words did you come up with? Okay even though I asked first I’ll share mine “exciting,” “determined,” and “wiser.” All three contain a common theme, optimism. What about you? Does your word set fall into the optimistic realm?

If no, believe me I understand. My optimism only surfaced or re-surfaced late last year. Prior to that I felt burnt out, defeated, and un-inspired. Loss and a major rift with certain friends added to failure freelancing left me down.

So what changed you ask? Ironically the opportunities created by the aforementioned, especially the troubled friendships. Resulting I ended up focusing on some other friendships, which became increasingly powerful positive forces in my life.

See in a way the people you surround yourself with works as a mirror, reflecting your person. Although unlike a mirror you can change your reflection through choosing the right company. Note the term “right” will vary meaning. Right for me might not equal right for you. Your needs will determine right for you.

Now my needs include stimulation for my entrepreneurial spirit and challenge to do more. After an ideal night out I’m returning home enthused, eager to turn new ideas into reality. Meanwhile you may simply seek companions to blow off steam with following a grueling work week. Again, right remains subjective.

To bring this back to point the right people could help transform a negative word set into a positive one. Currently I’m still a failed freelancer, living with my parents because I’m not making a livable income. Doesn’t sound too exciting, huh?

However, I am not focusing on where I am today or dwelling on my mistakes I made the last five years. Instead I am excited about the steps I’m taking for my future. Those friends who stimulate my entrepreneurial spirit and challenge me to do more assist me in maintaining said positive mindset.

Great for me sure, but I am not here to brag. Rather I thought to share how I fostered such positive relationships, hoping the information will empower you to make your own.

Interestingly two friends I consider powerful positive forces in my life, James Schleicher and Mike Mannozzi, our origins go back to my time on my college’s student newspaper. I do not know if our friendships blossom the way they did without the newspaper. Therefore I recommend participation in activities, albeit via a school, community, or religious organization.

While getting involved you may discover someone pursuing something really cool. Show your support! In college I attended almost every concert James’ band played. During the summer between my junior and senior year I lent a hand behind the scenes handling public relations matters.

Today James stands out as a huge supporter always promoting my writing and Youtube videos on Facebook. Plus he challenges me to do more, a need I mentioned earlier. The reason my videos “If Hulk Hogan had cerebral palsy…” and the newest “If Nick Swisher had cerebral palsy…” came into existence extends back to feedback James gave me on my cerebral palsy exercise montage “If Rocky Balboa had cerebral palsy…

Mike and his groomsmen

Mike’s groomsmen positively overwhelmed me with their tremendous character, a compliment to Mike’s character.

Supporting somebody carries no guarantee for reciprocation. Nevertheless when mutual respect emerges, so will the reciprocation. I recall last October feeling positively overwhelmed by how much character Mike’s groomsmen possessed. We all provided a positive impact on Mike and the same goes for the impact Mike made on us all. Mutual respect!

Concluding I feel compelled to incorporate a disclaimer. Surrounding yourself with the right people will not single handedly transform your life. Personally, physical activity including my physical therapy routines and distance walking training contributed to my renewed positive outlook. Yet I firmly believe finding and fostering those positive relationships can play a significant role in shedding your negativity and becoming optimistic.

P.S. James recently began a blog. Not surprisingly I highly recommend the read, www.ibbjames.com.

One response on “Fostering Positive Relationships

  1. ibbjames

    The key to staying motivated = “…my entrepreneurial spirit and challenge to do more…”

    Never stop getting better and being yourself my man!

    NDC Newspaper for life! 🙂

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