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Why family, not friends, will mold you into a successful individual

One of the most important life lessons we can learn from our family is about resilience. The ability to face with difficulties in work and private life requires an application of survival skills that we acquired first from our parents. It is this strong bond that exists between our parents that allows us to form a trusting relationship, able to withstand even the most complex challenges facing us.

Dr. Damian Jacob Sendler
Dr. Damian Jacob Sendler

My friends, my enemies?

Friendships are meaningful, but only honest and robust family bonds hone the best personality for success. The reason is the following: you are more likely to trust your parents than friends when facing challenges. As a leader-in-the-making, being able to connect with someone in an unbiased way is important to solve problems, find spiritual support, organize financial aid, if needed. These aspects of life require profound trust and understanding – and family support seems to work best. After all, America’s greatest success stories include family dynasties where wealth, wisodm, and mutual support are shared extensively.

There are exceptions to the rule: if you close your eyes right now, can you identify one or two friends who will risk everything to help you in times of distress? If the answer is a ‘no’ — you’re not alone. Nowadays, most friendships are transient, and developing strong leadership skills requires sustainability. It follows that to keep climbing up the ladder of success, every leader-in-the-making needs a reliable support network. 

But I am connected to the world!

In the times of widespread globalization and technological innovation, it is easy to assume that we are connected to everyone. Connectivity is a relative term — what matters is the quality of interacting with others. While an average smartphone user interacts with his phone over 2500 times a day, how many of these operations are meaningful? In other words, out of 2500 times someone touches their phone, how many of those led to exchanging important e-mails, text messages, or updating on valuable information? The same principle expands to everyday interaction with people close to us. Just because we know someone, doesn’t mean we can rely on them for help.

Family and leadership

All of this brings me back to the critical question of defining the role of our family in creating a strong leadership position. One of the most important life lessons we can learn from our family is about resilience. The ability to face with difficulties in work and private life requires an application of survival skills that we acquired first from our parents. It is this strong bond that exists between our parents that allows us to form a trusting relationship, able to withstand even the most complex challenges facing us. 

When we have that strong bond with people who genuinely care about our success, it is easier to get inspired to do well and to maintain confidence. There is something about the relationship between children and parents that don’t involve unhealthy incentives — for instance, interacting for financial, professional, or existential gains. 

To create strong leadership skills, we need to have at least one person that we can entrust with all of our deepest secrets. That one person usually turns out to be our mom, dad, or a sibling. Therefore, it is critical to keep in mind who is ‘on our team’ to have a backup and support system. Strong leaders can always count on the unbiased and genuine advise when life demands it. Therefore, it is essential to cherish those closest relationships to create an environment of genuine interaction.

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