I’ve spent too much energy on my third circle—the most draining, discouraging, and soul-sucking of circles.
It’s here that the naysayers dwell. The pessimists. The fearful. The broken who break others.
Too often, I wrongly believe that if I try hard enough or say just the right thing, I can win the love and approval of those people. I fret, plan, and over-explain—to no avail. I leave conversations feeling not only rejected, but deeply inadequate and often depressed.
Circle two, however, is different. In this circle are people who listen to us dreamers. While they may not be ready to leap into dreams of their own, they offer no resistance to our dream-chasing. Witnessing us pursue ours may one day propel them to pursue dreams of their own.
But the first circle is where it’s at! In this circle are people who ask you, “What are your goals, and how can I help you achieve them?” They are mentors, those who have gone ahead and seen their own dreams realized. They are cheerleaders. They remind us:
…whatever is true, whatever is noble,
whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—
if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—
think about such things.
Circle one is the sweet spot in dreaming and in life. The people in this circle breathe life into you and extend the hands and feet of Jesus. They are your bucket-fillers. Your trailblazers.
My friend Jennifer asks me exactly what I wrote above, “What are your goals, and how can I help you achieve them?” She is a business mentor for me, and she is in my first circle.
When I told my friend Angela that I was starting a business, she replied, “Wow! You are spicy! You set out to do big things and you do them.” I never realized that about myself. Angela showed me the truth about who I am and cheered me on. She is in my first circle.
I am blessed. When I choose to surround myself with the encouragers in my first circle, I thrive. I learn. I grow. (<====Click to tweet.)
I also choose differently when I take counsel from my first circlers. They inspire me to consider what I truly feel is right in any given decision—instead of what will hush the noisy opinions of those in circle three. For instance, am I living and giving generously, as I claim to value—or am I pinching pennies in fear of being without? Am I fitting into someone else’s mold, or am I living authentically as God created me?
It’s a whole new level of dream-chasing and freedom to draw circles and press forward accordingly.
Draw your circles. Focus your energy on your first circle. Be amazed at where God takes you. (<====Click to tweet.)
Then be a first circler to others.
Who is in your first circle, and how do they encourage you?
What can you do to be a first circler for someone else?
*Three Circles adapted from Melissa Poepping’s audio, The Three Most Important Circles You Can Draw.
Shared By: Mandy Mianecki
Photo credit: Frans