This is a quote that I have always taken to heart.  I came across this poignant musing by Mark Twain  the year after I graduated from college.  I was living in a big city and it was quite overwhelming.  There were very few people that wanted to give you a hand up.  Most people wanted to put you down and keep you down just for the sake of doing so.  My fiancé found this quote and forwarded it to me at my office one morning.  It really spoke to him as well.  Serendipitously, this was the quote of the day on his birthday.  We have always held steadfast regarding the tenets of this quote and fervently believed in Mark Twain’s wisdom.

To take a closer look at the quotation, one must examine it line by line.  It sounds obvious that we should keep away from people who belittle our ambitions, but how many of us still let “dream stealers”  or “energy vampires” in our lives?  How many of us let others tell us that our dreams our impossible? stupid? laughable?  If your circle of friends and even family makes these remarks about your dreams, they are what Mark Twain call “small people”.  They don’t think enough of themselves to lift another up.  You don’t need people like this in your life and you should eliminate them immediately.  I know that it’s easier said than done, but think about your ambitions and your dreams.  Don’t sacrifice them for the sake of another.

Now to the uplifting part!  There are some really great people out there and they are going to make you feel that you can become really great as well. When you meet these people, hold onto to them! Don’t let them go because they are the true jewels of life.  You will go further and faster than you ever dreamed with these great people by your side.

Keep this quotation in mind so that when you are evaluating your circle and make sure that it’s a positive one!  Do so for your own sake and for the sake of your dreams as well!