information. But because we forget, and here’s
the thing, because we think we’re too cool, too smart, too slick, too rich, too connected, too, too,
too … that somehow we’re going to be the exceptions to the rule, but it’s not the case. Now,
listen. If you have friends who don’t care about their lives, they are not going to be very
concerned about your life. If you have friends or a group that is not taking care of themselves,
they will not take very good care of your self. If you have friends that aren’t concerned about the
health of their marriage, they are going to share little concern about the health of your marriage.
If you have friends or a group that doesn’t care too much about their reputation, they certainly
aren’t going to work very hard to protect your reputation. If you have friends or a group that are
careless with their finances, they will be equally careless with your finances. If you have friends
that could care less about their physical health, they are not going to be on the lookout for your
physical health. If they’re not taking care of themselves, they’re not going to take care of your
self. Which means, whether you ever think like them or not, whether you ever behave like them
or not, you are in a dangerous, dangerous place, because the companion of the people who could
care less eventually suffers the consequences of the behavior of the people who could care less,
whether you dip into their behavior or lifestyle or not.

Now as I’m talking, for some of you, faces are coming to mind and you’re thinking, how
did he know? I didn’t know. Solomon knew, thousands and thousands of years ago he knew.
This is a principle. This is not a decision. This is not something that you violate. This is
something that you ignore and ultimately pay for, or you leverage to your benefit and
consequently you’re rewarded for it. So in light of all that, in light of the fact that none of us are
really exceptions to this rule, I want to suggest some guardrails. Now, I made these up. None of
these are in the Bible. If you say, Well, that’s just his opinion, you are correct. This is just my
opinion. But it is my very informed opinion, okay? It is my opinion after listening to the most heartbreaking stories you could imagine—by watching my own life, by watching the parents of
some of my children, by talking to strangers, by talking to people I’ve known for years and years
and years, crying with people, weeping with people I draw these five suggestions from the fact
that if most of the people I had talked to had had one or more of these five guardrails, they
would’ve avoided some of the greatest heartbreaking experiences of their lives, and I want that
for you.

Now, as I’m giving these to you, some of you are going to push back in this way. You’re
going to say, Andy, that doesn’t sound very