The #1 decision effecting your ability to kick ass in life is making a conscious decision as to who you spend time with.

When I began my entrepreneurial journey at 17, I didn’t know any other entrepreneurs. The closest person I had was a friend who was running his father’s company, that used to argue with me that being late for meetings was a great way to show a potential customer that you were busy, so you must be good… and my Uncle who was in the mafia. So not the highest quality advice out there.

One day, I read a book that changed my life: Love is the Killer App by Tim Sanders. One of the points he argued is that your network is your net worth. In it, he wrote about ways to identify and connect with people in an authentic way that could help you along your entrepreneurial journey.

Ever since that point, I’ve been consciously taking “Friendventory” and ruthlessly cutting people out of my life that don’t share my values, beliefs or take more then they give.

Here are a few lessons I’ve learned to help you do the same:

Conversations drive thoughts. Thoughts shape actions. If the quality of your conversations are mediocre at best, then your actions will match that.

Said a better way… “Small minds discuss people; Average minds discuss events; Great minds discuss ideas.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

If you are still hanging out with your highschool friends that get drunk every weekend and talk shit about everyone in town, then don’t be surprised if you’re struggling to get your business off the ground or growing it.

The quality of conversations matter a lot!

Are you telling me that I should stop being friends with people that have been apart of my life for years?

YES! Well, kinda. I’m just saying spend less time with them. It just means you start by finding new friends who inspire you, who are positive and who will support you in pursuing your dreams.

The challenge is you might feel guilty. Like a traitor. Like you’re alienating them. But here’s what I believe:

True friends want you to be happy and to pursue your dreams and they understand that it may mean less time together just hanging out, watching football games, or partying… and if they get upset with you for that, then are they really your friends?

Dealing with toxic friends and family members

This is a tough one. I get it. I have very close family members that always seem to complain, make snide remarks and talk behind my back… but I love them. They’re blood, and I can’t cut them out of my life completely, but I can – and do – choose to spend less time with them. When I see them, I’m kind, say hello… but essentially I never go out of my way to hang out.

My friend Dandapani – one of the coolest Hindu priests I’ve ever met – calls it: Affectionate Detachment. It pretty much means to keep your distance out of love for them and you. When they’re ready (if ever) to change, then you can be there to support them, but until then – keep your distance.

Finding new friends that you can grow with

There’s something magical that happens when you start spending more time with people who are positive, ambitious and passionate about what they do. It’s best summed up with a quote:

You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.
~ Jim Rohn

The benefit of having lived in several major cities is that I’ve gotten really good at making new friends. Here are some ways to do that:

Go to events: When I first moved to San Francisco, I didn’t have a single friend that lived there. I just showed up and hoped for the best. My approach was simple. Go to every event that was going on, and introduce myself to the person next to me. I did this for 10 weeks straight.

Host a lunch: The best skill I’ve developed is my ability to cold email/call someone and invite them to lunch. I have to confess, it’s an art form… and I’ve probably got 10,000+ hours in it. It’s just a really great way to meet new people and build authentic relationships with people that inspire me to do more.

Volunteer: It’s simple. Assholes typically don’t volunteer, so the people you meet are pretty much guaranteed to be amazing. Many of my good friends I had in San Francisco came from my time advising Kiva.org on their social media strategy. Totally a win/win/win.

Those are the top 3 ways I believe you can find quality people to spend more time with. Do it today, take a “friendventory” and make some adjustments so you can live a happier life.

—-

Have you cut anyone from your life? How did you do it? Any tips for the best way to approach it? Leave a comment below. I read and respond to each one.

  • http://www.regnoel.com Reg Noël

    Good morning Dan,

    Thank you for the inspirational post…everything you said in it makes perfect
    sense. … I wouldn’t change a thing. Beyond that, it has emotional value that speaks the truth directly to the heart of people.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Thx Reg. It’s always a controversial topic as people are always worried about feeling alone, or labelled as a “traitor” or worse.

      My life changed when I made a decision to spend more time with folks who lifted me up, vs. pulled me down.

      It’s now just second nature.

      Appreciate the comment!

  • natacha dugas

    Being energized, willing to move forward, and unwilling to accept mediocrity has been the natural process of elimination. You’ve nailed in yesterday’s post when you wrote “Ask not if you are worthy of your goals, ask instead – are your goals worthy of your life?” People that surround you, should all play a role in your life’s goal, and YOU in theirs.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      BOOM! Agreed.

      I was actually just talking about the drafting effect anyone’s success has on those around them.

      If I strive for my dreams, it rubs off a little bit on people around me. It’s a responsibility most don’t realize they have.

      Humans are cool like that.

      So much to learn.

      Thanks for the comment.

  • jonnykblog

    I’m a bit of a sentimental person, so at times I find it hard to TRULY let a friendship go. Does this mean you need to fully cut someone off? Not always, but it is sometimes necessary. I’ve been on the process of changing certain aspects of my life lately. Have I been successful in my life? To some degree, yes. But I also feel stifled and want more out of life.

    It’s easy to blame others for your failures – their negativity and stresses – they sometimes define you, if not careful. Aside from the personal life, this is prevalent in your typical 9 to 5 job – my current situation. Guess what kind of people constantly surrounds you in a job such as this? Deadlines, stress, negativity – people want and take what they can get of your time and energy, like leeches.

    For the past couple of months, I’ve been trying something new – choosing to live without fear and stress and the mindset that brings. Although not always perfect, so far it has been amazing. When you surround yourself with positive people, I can understand how this turns around. You want to give more and more, and in a professional sense you feel more creative.

    Taking a friendventory may be difficult (especially with family), but I can see the potential to drive you to new heights. Ultimately, you’re the one who needs to be happy in life and the first steps are changing your own mindset and being around empowering people.

    Thanks for the post, Dan!

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Jonny, great comment and appreciate you sharing.

      Work is a tough one … cause you really don’t pick your co-workers.

      That being said, I believe there’s 1 or 2 good people in any group, neighbourhood or city.

      Many folks in my hometown (Moncton, NB) complain that no one gets them, and EVERYONE things small / complain / etc.

      I always remind them of the 100+ people that are badass and kickass people.

      I believe, at a minimum, every community has 1% great people. You just need to do the work to find them, cause their usually busy changing the world!

  • http://razorcreative.blogspot.com richgould

    Bang on Dan.

    I recently did a social media friendventory (great word). I don’t care for it much when people announce that they cleaned up their friend list on FB and “if you’re seeing this – congrats, you made the cut”… so I don’t do that, but I did do a mass “unfollow”. It was an arduous process, but there are now about 20 people I follow on Facebook now that post great stuff, uplifting, encouraging, positive or funny. Such a simple thing but it really has made a huge difference.

    Having said all that, what are your thoughts on trying to affect change in people that are negative, or at least try to lead by example (even lay it on a little thicker when they are around)? I know for some, being negative is so much easier and even safer for them. It makes it easier to say “I told you so” when shit goes wrong – which we all know will happen inevitably for all of us. But the payoff to being positive (even as hard as it can be at times) is so much higher. I just wish some of the negative people I care about could see that better. Sometime I feel I should keep them around me to hopefully have some positive vibes rub off on them. Does that make any sense?

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      WHAT A GREAT QUESTION!

      Here’s the way I think about.

      People are pretty much stuck in their ways once they hit ~23 years old (I have not data to support this .. just gut). So if someone is negative, lack ambition, etc .. it usually take a “Defining Moment” in their lives to make a change. This typically shows up as a; divorce/breakup/loosing someone, almost dying, or getting fired.

      So, it’s very unlikely that a conversation from you will have a huge impact… and if anything, usually (as I’ve learned the hard way) leave the other person feeling bitter.

      My approach: BE THE BEST VERSION OF YOU EVER! Be awesome. Follow you passions. Do good. If/when they need you, they’ll reach out … till then, you only risk hurting the relationship.

      That’s what happened between me and my brother Pierre. We didn’t get along that well until the day he decided “I’m sick of being a mechanic, I want to do something for myself” and he reached out for help.

      All I did was lead the best life I knew how.

      Since then, I’ve had MANY old friends reach out.

      Goes back to the old saying … “When the student is ready the teacher will appear” – that’s the way I look at it.

      Anything more involved and you risk being co-dependent and enabling the person to continue in their ways.

      That’s my approach. Not sure if it’s right or wrong … but the one thing they know, is when they’re ready – I’ll be there and will support them like they’ve never thought possible. But they need to be ready.

      Till then, I can’t help more then continuing to live the fullest life I know how.

      Hopefully that helps.

      P.S. Thanks for being someone who inspires and encourages me to be a better person.

  • http://www.twitter.com/biggiesu Mike Su

    Hey dude – great post. But I felt compelled to push back a bit on this. I agree 100% that those who are actively dragging you down are not really friends, and that at some point loyalty has to go both ways, and it’s hard to argue that that friend is doing you any favors (see most professional athletes and their entourage). At the same time, the definition (in my book) of generosity and kindness is doing things for people that you have no reasonable expectation could ever give back in kind. In fact, I believe it’s a key part of what makes us human. For me, the people I have known when I had nothing to offer but my friendship (which one could make a good case is all I’ve ever had to offer anyway), are the people I trust the most. They are the support system that helps me through tough times, and the constant in my life. The danger is that in pursuit of greatness, we keep trading up. That’s a good way to succeed in business, but I know a lot of people who got their way to the top only to realize it was a very lonely place to be because all they had was a web of transactional relationships. Or, even worse, those relationships only lasted while they were on top and had something to offer someone.

    I don’t think this is necessarily contrary to what you’re saying. From all of our interactions you’ve been nothing but generous and giving of your time, experiences and you carry that forth in your writing. But you are a person that a lot of people look up to, a lot of young and ambitious people who might lose sight of the bigger picture, and I’m afraid some of that nuance and context can get lost along the way.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Mike, thanks for the thoughtful comment … we’re on the same page.

      It’s not about writing people off because they have nothing to offer … but we can probably both agree, if the person is being harmful/abusive/negative all the time, no one should endured that.

      My message above is a bit cut & dry … it’s cause I didn’t want to be mediocre on it.

      I obviously believe in giving to others without expectations … its one of my guiding principles – but that doesn’t mean I will spend a lot of time with someone who is an energy vampire.

      That’s the high order bit imho.

      Great to hear from you!

      Hope all is awesome.

    • Kayci

      I didn’t want to like this post. I don’t have too many toxic people in my life as I just don’t keep company with people out of obligation. So this trend in writing about purging negative people is generally overdone. But I loved the positive spin on this- how to meet more quality people (because let’s face it, who doesn’t benefit from more friends and a multitude of perspectives?).
      And this comment just made the article that much better since everyone should recognize that a person’s value isn’t always in how they contribute to your intellectual conversations, your ideas, or your passions. Sometimes its just about how they make you feel.

    • Frank

      i completely agree with you

    • ron rivers

      Hi Mike, this is a massive subject unless hard and fast rules are kept to. Just a thought, they say ” Be careful who you tread on on the way up because you may well meet again on the way down.” This advice certainly tempers one’s attitude. Thanks, good luck.

  • Ozge

    Love this post, Dan! I always questioned myself if I was being heartless when I had to cut my toxic friends out. This is very nice to hear that I am not alone here.

    On another point, we have so many challenges and even much drama to go over during this entrepreneurship journey, I only want the good people around me to make me a better person.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Ozge, 100%! It’s tough enough with the roller coast we call startup life … so having anyone less then supportive in your life could prove disastrous.

      Good call!

  • http://www.pogtech.com John Pollock

    Great post. Thanks for taking the time recently to post more.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      John, my pleasure… it’s selfish really .. I figure I only have so many keystrokes left in me, so I better use them for documenting some ideas that I can link to. Saves me times 🙂

      All joking aside, it’s a lot of fun.

  • http://ciurca.ro/ Vlad Ciurca

    Hey Dan.

    Really interesting article. I also try to spend less time with people that are negative in general and take a lot of my energy, so I can relate to this.

    It’s impressive that you’ve spent approx. 10,000+ hours in developing the cold emailing/calling skill. I mostly do this for getting in touch with certain people, as doing lunch doesn’t always work due to geographic constraints 🙂

    Best regards,
    Vlad

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Vlad, I’m just a people person and over time it’s just second nature … might even write an e-book on the subject because people ask me about it so much.

      It’s also worth mentioning, that I reach out to all types of entrepreneurs/creators. I believe that every city has inspiring/motivated/big thinking individuals in it .. you just need to do the hard work to find them and reach out.

      Just this past march I cold called 179 entrepreneurs, asked them about their business, then invited 60 of them to a dinner event I created. Only 2% were in tech, the rest were in traditional industries and they were all fascinating and amazing.

      So no excuses for where you live … get out and meet in person 🙂

      • http://ciurca.ro/ Vlad Ciurca

        Good point! 🙂 Thanks for the extra insights, and you should definitely write that book – I’ll be the first to buy it 😉

  • http://www.duncanebata.com/ Duncan Ebata

    Good morning Dan, great post. Thanks for writing this. A very good friend of mine described these actions as “maintaining social hygiene.” Wishing you a peaceful and productive day! – DE

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Duncan, I love the way he frames it “maintaining social hygiene” .. well said.

      Thanks for sharing that.

  • Chris Hill

    Dan, wasn’t your mother was an entrepreneur with the chip wagon?

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      She did run Mrs. Chips but I wouldn’t consider her an entrepreneur. My dad was the instigator in the group even though he never ventured out on his own, he always had something going on.

      The challenge in that scenario though is that it’s tough to get advice from your parents… especially as a teenager.

      Always best to find someone new and unbiased with a track record of success… the advice always sticks better.

      DM

  • Elie

    Hey Dan,

    This is all true I’m going through the exact scenario right now and it’s quite challenging. I have been doing exactly what you mentionned in the past 3 months and things are moving but not fast enough to my liking. It’s hard to connect with new people right away. I mean the lunch meetings and events are cool but it takes time to build relationship/meet co-founder.
    I agree with all that you mentionned but I realize that it takes time and you got to do this much more then just ten weeks.

    Ps. This blog really motivated today, great initiative

    @elie_1582

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Elie, yep … much like anything in life, it requires doing it over a long period of time to have an impact.

      That’s why it’s so tough .. cause you won’t see a result at first … it’s not like dying your hair, or buying a new outfit – it’s more like working out.

      BUT… it can be the most impactful thing to your life. That’s my belief anyway.

      Hope you’re having an amazing day!

      DM

  • jshack

    You’re still looking pretty thin to have devoted that much time to lunch. 😉

    Sometimes it is necessary to cut a part of yourself out of your life. It can be extremely difficult and even painful, but true to the idea you are who you surround yourself with, ask a set you respect for their candid advice and then be courageous enough to act accordingly. A day, a week, a month can be enough time to make critical decisions and even do or start something meaningful, or they can roll away as years with little to remember. I think having the right people around you to help and see yourself thru is a key distinction between the former and latter. Thanks for reminding me of that with this post Dan. I’ve been distracted and haven’t done anything that resembles a Friendventory in quite a long time.

    Hope everything is going well with the newest members to your inner circle.

    cheers,
    -j

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Great to hear from you!

      Don’t let the pictures fool you … new startup, 2 kids and building a house has taken a tool on my bod but I work hard every week to keep it in check! 🙂

      I guess it all comes down to habits. I don’t consciously have to make a “Friendventory” anymore, but I use to … now it’s just how I live my life.

      I’m glad I inspired you to take an audit and adjust. You just helped me realize that my blog isn’t about always teaching people new things, it’s about reminding them what they already know … that’s the biggest gift my friends bring to my life.

      Hope all is awesome!

  • Mike Nguyen

    Hey Dan, long time! Hope all is well with the family.

    This post is great and resonates with me as I’ve recently cut out a major drain on my life and business. I’ve always been too emotionally wrapped around the axel about people. I’ve tended to integrate people in all aspects of my life if they’ve taken a pole position with me in business. Keeping my business and personal lives separate never really made sense to me. After all, what’s more personal than business (per Gyp Rosetti from Boardwalk Empire)?

    The problem is very few people can really integrate with us across all levels. I certainly can’t with most no matter how good my intentions. So unfortunately in this case, I opened up myself to a person who took advantage of me during a weak period of time in my business. He leveraged our friendship to get a larger stake in the company under the guise of him being the only loyal person I could trust. Needless to say, this turned out to not be true. But unfortunately he was so integrated into my personal life that every decision or interaction was complicated. I was stuck. I allowed myself to be taken advantage of. I stopped doing the things that fed my creativity and passions. Almost everything stagnated. I found myself no longer talking about my plans and dreams. Instead all we did was talk negatively about everyone and everything.

    Fast forward to this spring, I finally had enough and extricated this person from my business and life. The resulting gains have been amazing. All sorts of business Opportunties that could not have been possible with this person around before are being capitalized on. I’m a million times happier and we just closed on our first house in SF.

    Anyway, sorry about the long post. Mine is an extreme case of course, then again maybe not. I suspect many people have gone through something similar. As much as I regret not extricating myself from this person earlier, I realize I had to take this journey to get to this point. In hindsight, the lessons I learned over the last 2 years has been invaluable. Especially the one that will keep me from never letting this happen again.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Mike, thanks for the comment .. and I can totally relate. I’ve had something similar happen to me. When I was getting going with Spheric we did a deal with a company, and the CEO of that company became a “mentor” – or so I thought. After spending months working together, he tried to buy us.. when I said no, he stopped paying all our invoices – which almost caused me the business.

      Life will be full of people trying to take advantage of you … but just trust your gut, that’s what I do now. No matter how lucrative the opportunity, I don’t go against my gut.

      The key is to not shut yourself down from trusting others because of one bad apple, cause most people are good people. I believe that.

      Congrats on the house in SF!

  • http://www.greenmango.cc/ Roy Opata Olende

    Dan, thanks for the post.

    What are your thoughts on making connections outside of the city you live? I live in Niagara, about an hour out of Toronto. I know that I’ll probably make more great connections there, but with a young family (2yr old and 7 month old boys) it’s hard to balance being in T.O. multiple nights per week.

    It’s easier to connect with people in Niagara, but I feel like I’m missing out on opportunities.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      I would do both. I spent a couple weeks earlier this year reaching out to 100+ local entrepreneurs from my home town… about 20 of them are now very good friends.

      I still travel around and maintain and build on new relationships… I guess I’m saying, we should always be trying to surround ourself with great people and be helpful to others.

      There are ways to be efficient so that it’s time well spent… might blog about this in the future.

      • http://www.greenmango.cc/ Roy Opata Olende

        Thanks for the advice, Dan.

  • Anna

    I have a really good friend who constantly tells me: “When you have had enough of your bullshit, you will give it up” and another tells me, “Pick a flavor and be that flavor.” The best way for me to cut the strings of toxicity from my life is to take my own inventory and ask myself the hard questions and face the merciless truth: am I harming or helping? If I am harming, I have to let go, despite the voice in my head saying, “You just gave up on that person”. 99.99% of the time I am in the way of healing. I cannot be everything to everyone in my life. Not all relationships are meant to last a life time. I have to figure out the difference between seasonal friendships and rooted friendships.
    When I picked the flavor I want to be, I was amazed how my life changed. I gravitated toward people of the same flavor, and I attracted authentic people. Now instead of having a ton of acquaintances, I have genuine relationships that weather any storm. We have a common goal and help each other.
    I have a big heart, an open heart. I also built a big fucking fence around it and choose wisely.
    Anna

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Anna, super honest introspection … appreciate you being so bold. It’s true, many of us need to ask if we are the ones who are hurting others with our conversations/thoughts, etc.

      Thx.

    • ron rivers

      You’ve done a terrific job in choosing your way Anna. I’m proud of you and no doubt so is Dan.

  • Ken Morris

    Agree Dan. I’ve unfortunately had to keep my distance from family members after my dad died. I realized who they really are after that event which has lead me to start my businesses on my own and create my own team. Slowly but surely I will build something of value.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Affectionate detachment. You can still love your family for who they are without being around them. At the end of the day, we should surround ourselves with people who will support us and push us to be a better person. That is just self respect in my books.

  • mspswede

    Solid post, but you need a proofreader. Your writing undermines your credibility.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      This may be true, and I have since I wrote this, but I never want to wait to publish till I feel something is 100%.

      That’s not my style, and is all about my credibility (and personality).

      When I feel the content is good enough to get the message across, I hit publish.

      Just like in business.

  • YOWian

    Great post Dan and very appropriate considering New Years is one of the most very reflective times of year. I still see my high school friends once a year at an annual Christmas party. It is great to see everyone and I am always equally impressed at who has “grown up” and who has pretty much stayed the same.

    Loved the quote from Jim Rohn; “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” There is a lot of truth to this.

    Also found this to ring true: “Small minds discuss people; Average minds discuss events; Great minds discuss ideas.”

    Really liked the comment from richgould and your response. I agree with you that personality traits are pretty much cast by the time you turn 23. However, your ability to improve your EQ (Emotional Intelligence) is only bounded by your willingness to learn and change. Improving your EQ (and its impact on success) is a debatable topic for sure, but I like to think that people have the capacity to change at any age. Like you said sometimes a significant life event can instigate change … other times it can come from within and be your own decision that you want to change.

  • Nicky

    Thanks for this post. I have decided to cut certain friends and family members from my life in search of people who inspire me. Going out there and actually doing it is terrifying for a proper introvert like myself but I like your idea of volunteering. Thanks again!
    regularlady.com

  • jsonmez

    Really excellent post.
    Thanks for those tips at the end.
    I’ve had a difficult time finding friends that are few steps ahead—or even many steps—of where I want to be.
    Going to implement some of those tips to see if I can change that.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Surrounding yourself with people who can push you forward is so powerful.

      Uncomfortable at first, but becomes second nature over time.

      Thx for the comment.

      DM

  • http://www.about.me./Mariah.Lichtenstern Mariah Lichtenstern

    This is an excellent framework for detoxing your life and creating mutually beneficial relationships. Fortunately, my friends from high school and college are all amazing and incredibly supportive. We’ve stuck it out through thick and thin and what we have to offer each other is unconditional love. However, I’ve founds some tares among the wheat over the years, so I can appreciate all the advice here.

    “Affectionate Detachment. It pretty much means to keep your distance out of love for them and you.” – Definitely employ this with toxic family.

    “Volunteer: It’s simple. Assholes typically don’t volunteer, so the people you meet are pretty much guaranteed to be amazing.” – True, and resonates after volunteering for LAUNCH fest. Every single volunteer was amazing – and so were most of the people we interacted with (but I noted the few who treated us as “less than” with our V-Tees on – no favorable intros for those!).

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Thats’s some great advice! Thanks.

      DM

  • Oliver Thornton

    I read it twice to get the spirit of what Dan was getting at. It sounds self seeking first time through but I don’t think it is. Dan is a thoughtful fellow who happily doesn’t like to over complicate – a Blaise Pascal devotee perhaps.

    I agree that conversations drive thoughts and by definition words do – ‘Friendsventory’ could be better expressed.

    • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

      Oliver,

      I chose that word carefully because I wanted it to land.

      I didn’t want people to dismiss the power of choosing their relationships.

      It’s meant everything in my life.
      http://www.danmartell.com/about (scroll to the bottom)

      DM

      • Oliver Thornton

        It landed and had impact, just the wrong one – I think it misrepresents you and you have more depth as your short bio suggests (read not scrolled).

    • ron rivers

      Hello Oliver, Dan has made life choices which he deemed necessary to improve his lot. Good, this is something I achieved many years ago and found to be a superb catalyst for the future. I agree, family members can be the most difficult bugbears because of the natural closeness of your parents and siblings, and the draw those relationships have. Luckily, my parents were undoubtedly my greatest and best influence. Sad to relate my two younger brothers believed they always knew best and caused much internal unrest. The situation later resolved itself with one brother emigrating and the other sadly involved in a fatal accident. Social climbing is nothing new but even that can have hidden dangers. However, overall, the essence is ”keep in” as they say, and keep safe.

      • Oliver Thornton

        Oh hello again Ron. We all have our reasons, but its the language, the choice of words. I read Dan’s stuff based on my positive perception. Friends are a privilege, they put up with your weaknesses and foibles too. I think I might demur from a friendship involving the word ‘Friendventory’. However are we really talking about ‘friends’ here, the allusion is to perhaps acquaintances, associates, colleagues where the relationship is more transient. Perhaps ‘Relationship Audit’ is more appropriate (but a little onanistic all the same).

        • http://twitter.com/danmartell Dan Martell

          I chose those words so that it got read… mission accomplished.

        • ron rivers

          Oliver,
          ‘Relationship Audit’………..Mmmm ! Far too humane for my tastes.
          Try ‘Cull’ ……..sounds deliberate and singular enough for someone named Dan.

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