“Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer”
― Sun Tzu
I was a teenager the first time I heard this quote. I was hungry for wisdom back then. I still am. I understood the statement when I heard it. It’s been in the back my mind, my whole life.
That’s not to say I have applied this philosophy in my life, because I have not. But there have been times in my life where I’ve been forced to mingle with someone who might be an enemy. I’ve called up this quote during those times, as a way to make the interacting more tolerable.
Recently, I changed my mind on this. Sun Tzu was a warrior. I am not a warrior. And I have decided that at this point in my life, I do not want my enemies, close. Matter of fact, I want to avoid people I don’t like, or people who don’t like me, as often and as effectively as possible for the rest of my life.
I came to this conclusion when I realized that whatever I might gain from having my enemies close, is nowhere near worth the price of the day to day strain.
On top of that, there is the whole “Lie down with dogs and get fleas” thing to consider. In my experience, this is exactly what happens so from here on out, I’m going to keep my friends close and my enemies as far away as possible.
What do you think of Sun Tzu’s quote? Does it work for you better than it does for me?