When people ask me how I was able to succeed, they always expect me to tell them about myself. They want to hear about what makes me so special. Because so many of us believe it takes an exceptional, gifted, unicorn-type person to create something amazing.

     Of course, it’s true that I do have important qualities that I believe are key to success. I’m passionate. I’m driven. I’m hard-working. I believe in myself. I’m resilient in the face of challenges.

     But that’s only a part of my success. Because the truth is, I would never have gotten anywhere without the love, support, and hard work of many different people. Without the important relationships in my life, I never would have been able to take the risks I’ve taken or have the courage to forge my own way. And, without meaningful relationships, nothing I’ve accomplished would have ever been worth doing. I owe my success to so many different people I love and care deeply about.

     Whether you’re working at a successful company or you’re the head of a time one-person startup, relationships are crucial to your professional success. No matter how amazing and capable you are on your own, here’s why relationships are so important:

  • You can achieve so much more together than you can alone.
    Sure, you can do a lot. You have some pretty spectacular talents, skills, and specialties. But guess what? So does everyone else. And better yet, many of them have talents that complement yours. They bring different perspectives and experiences to the table. They can make up for what you lack.
    Once you bring a group of skilled, capable, hard-working people together and capitalize on their strengths, amazing things happen. The truth is, you can’t do it all – but who wants to, anyway? Let other people contribute and succeed along with you.
  • The right kind of people build you up and make you better.
    Jim Rohn famously said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Whether you notice it or not, the people you surround yourself with have an enormous influence on you – for better or for worse.
    Surround yourself with people who radiate positivity. People who challenge, motivate, inspire, and support you. People who lift you closer to where you want to be – and who believe you can get there.
    And as for the rest – those people who ooze negativity and make you feel small? Cut them loose. Eliminate the negative so you can accentuate the positive.
    Every year, I conduct a life audit. I take stock of my relationships and note how each of my relationships make me feel. Then, if necessary, I cut ties with people who have a negative influence on me. I set boundaries in order to give more time and energy to those in my life who really deserve it. My life audit has helped me create a more productive, inspiring, and personally fulfilling life.
    It may sound bold, but if you change nothing else in your life than the people you spend your time with, you will have increased you chance of success tenfold.
  • Success is always best shared.
    If you achieve everything you ever wanted but only have yourself to celebrate with – what’s the reward in that? Success is so much sweeter when you share it with others. Find joy in helping others achieve their goals. Find joy in allowing others to help YOU achieve your goals. There’s plenty of success to go around!

     In the end, it won’t be about how much money you made. It won’t be about how many sales you were able to close. It won’t be about how many hours you worked.

     It’ll be about the meaningful relationships you cultivated along the way. It’ll be about the time you were able to spend with your family and everyone else you care about. It’ll be about the individuals whose lives you were able to improve. Any time you spend time building and strengthening important relationships will always be a good investment. I can promise you that.