Uber chronicles : Ubuntu (Your network determines your net worth )

A few days ago I had a really dope conversation with an Uber driver. These conversations are usually the highlight of my Uber trips and this was probably my favorite one so far. The driver’s name was Josiah and unlike other drivers he wasn’t just providing good company, he also wanted to make me rich, very fast and who doesn’t want all those things right? So I listened eagerly and intently as he pitched to me his master plan for taking me from rags to riches.

The plan was simple, Josiah was going to sell me a product which in turn I was going to sell to other people ( friends, family, fools) and so on… and these sales were going to generate an ongoing income for me. This is called network marketing(or more infamously known as a pyramid scheme sometimes) and it is apparently one of the hottest industries out there for making a quick buck lol. It all sounded too good to be true which it probably is, so I zoned him out and politely told him I would look into it before making any further commitments.

But before we ended our conversation, there is something that he mentioned to me during his pitch that stuck with me. As I kept probing him with questions trying to find the flaws and loopholes in his plan at some point Josiah told me “Your network determines your net worth, find the right people and let them make money for you”.

“Your network determines your net worth” . I wanted to share this because I believe this is something that not only applies to network marketing but in life as well. This is the essence of Ubuntu. “I am what I am because of who we all are”. The people you surround yourself with determine who you are as a person from your success, to your happiness. Jim Rohn famously said, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with” and this is true because your environment is everything and you cant do epic shit with basic people lol.

Ubuntu is everywhere and its manifested in many aspects of our lives. Unfortunately this is not obvious because there is no one word in Western languages that truly captures the meaning in all its entirety. Ubuntu is not just a philosophy for advancing some kind of humanitarian virtue as is often the case. It is a way of life, it is life itself. You don’t have to help others (although that’s never a bad idea lol) or become the next Nelson Mandela. You can truly empower yourself by embracing Ubuntu.

Knowing that a change from within begins by a change from your surroundings makes Ubuntu quite possibly the greatest life hack that there is. No need to set crazy and often unachievable goals, no new years resolutions, just a change in who you are connected and have relationships with matters more. The edges are more important than the nodes and the biggest change you can make, in order to go from where you are to where you want to be is ironically, not on yourself but outside yourself and in your surroundings.

We try to focus and invest so much in ourselves, but how much do we invest in our relationships? The friends we have, the relationships we build and people we associate with are perhaps more powerful than what we could ever do for ourselves. Who has ever achieved anything on their own anyways without some influence, inspiration or help?

At its core Ubuntu is really about empowerment. Empowerment that comes from making meaningful human connections and rediscovering our true humanness. So be human, become whatever you want to be by embracing Ubuntu. Be around people who inspire you and are passionate about the same things as you. Cut ties with those that drag you down. Your network is your biggest investment, take the focus away from you and be aware of your surroundings because the edges are more important than the nodes.