A study conducted by Harvard doctors concluded that 95% of your success or failure in life is determined by the people you associate with. Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” In this episode, Dr. Ivan Misner shares a powerful metaphor to visualize and intentionally build a strong inner circle that will lead us to more success in life and business.

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How to Build a Strong Inner Circle with Ivan Misner:

Dr. Ivan Misner’s definition of an inner circle:
Your closest advisors, people who give you honest advice and feedback. These people help you to be your best self. They tell you the truth but in a caring way.

You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with  – Jim Rhone

What is the metaphorical room? ?

Imagine, you spend your whole life in one room and that one room has only one door. That one door is an enter only door. So when people come in they are there forever and you can never get them out!
– If this were real and not a metaphor wouldn’t you be more selective on who you let into your life?

In order to make better decisions on who you let into your room, you need to know what your values are.

Do you have deal breakers for what is absolutely unacceptable to have in a personal or professional relationship?
– Knowing this will help you to understand what your values are.


Guess what? You need to invest in friendships more.

Once you have your values set it will be easier for you to be selective when you are choosing who to allow in your life (room).

You mentioned that our metaphoric door is an enter only door, what if our doorman has already let many people in that do not align with our values? ?

You have to learn how to say no. Only say yes to things that resonate with you. A great way to say no without being a jerk is to say If I said yes to you I’m afraid I would let you down. – A great way to say no without actually saying no.

Benign neglect is another great way to say no and to slowly move someone out of your room. – This works even when you don’t mean for it to. This is when over time you just lose touch. Now, do this with a plan, you do this with what is called homeopathic doses. This is a way to gradually distance yourself from people who are anchors in your life and not engines.

Would you say that we need to train our doorman? ?‍✈️

You train them on your values, you need to be able to recite your values. Look for behaviors of people and not just their words. Their behaviors will show you their true values.

What is your perspective on a new entrepreneur starting out by reaching to the top to have some of the most successful people in their inner circle? ?

No matter how successful someone is they still need to be vetted to be in your life/room. Success does not equal great values. You need to make sure that your values are still in alignment!

Dr. Ivan Misner’s final thought: ?

You may have people in your life/room that have baggage. They may be in your life, but their baggage doesn’t have to be. There are things you can do to make sure that their baggage stays out. You can set boundaries on conversations to keep their baggage out. (Listen to the episode to hear 2 real-life examples on how to do this.)

Resources Mentioned in this Episode:

▶ Read the Book: Who’s in Your Room?
▶ Read Ivan Misner’s Podcast: IvanMisner.com
▶ Business Network International: BNI.com
▶ Here’s the rest of our conversation: The Secret to Balance

What outcomes in your life or business can you directly correlate to influence from your inner circle?