They say birds of a feather, flock together. Most friends tend to like the same things, have similar personalities, and female friends can sometimes even share the same menstrual cycle. But does that mean you're also likely to be healthy or unhealthy together? I assume that it's human nature that we become like the people we hang around most. We tend to unconsciously pick up habits like saying the same catch phrases, (Ashley and I tend to finish each others sentences), dressing the same, AND eating the same.
For example, you go out to lunch with your best friends. You're watching what you eat, but she is craving dessert. Are you more likely to give in to ordering dessert, or will you stand your ground? Most people in this scenario would easily fall for the trap. Not because they are craving whatever it is, but because your friends always make doing things more fun. Even eating.
For me, I'm more likely to have a round of drinks if my friends are. If they all decline, I won't. Furthermore, I tend to eat at the same pace as my friends. It works out well if they are slow eaters and never finish their entire meal. Not so much if they scarf down their food and claim that gold star for clearing their plate. It's clear that the influence of friends can work with you or against you. So, what do you do when it works against you? Get rid of them.
Okay, that sounds a little harsh, but it's important to realize just how much of an influence your inner circle has on your health. Here's a few ways to tell whether your friends are affecting your healthy lifestyle.
1.) You guys only go out to breakfast/brunch/lunch/dinner/drinks to spend time together
2.) They still don't get your love of running or being active
3.) They always encourage you to digress from your healthy eating (ie. Why NOT have that plate of fries with me?!?!?!? PLEASE!!!!!!!!)
4.) They want you to wallow in their unhappiness about their weight with them (without asking for help to do anything about it)
5.) They have major health issues but refuse to do anything to change it
6.) Instead of encouraging you/congratulating you on your accomplishments, they minimize your success
Have someone that meets 2 - 3 of the items above? It's time to have "the talk" with them. It doesn't mean that you have to give up your friendship completely, but do realize the impact they might have on the future of your health.
Have you had to let go of a friend because they weren't healthy???
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