by Chris McNeil,
Sometimes, incremental progress will do the trick. Other times, only a breakthrough will do.
2015 was a year I needed a breakthrough. I needed to put myself in an environment that I knew from past experience is a fertile ground for making a quantum leap: a mastermind.
What is a mastermind?
In the seminal book, Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill called a mastermind "the coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony."
The timing was right to start such a group this past Autumn. I had lost multiple people, including my girlfriend, father, and quite a few close friends over a short time. And I realized the losses had affected me in numerous ways.
So, I needed a mastermind. And, seemingly by magic, the right people were showing up around me. A I write this, I am five months into and feeling like a new person, with an exciting new business vision and renewed vigor for enjoying life.
So, here are the 5 key things a mastermind does for me, the core reasons I started it, and what joining one can do for you, too:
Self employed professionals and entrepreneurs like myself often lack the accountability of a boss that a traditional employee has, or the board of directors that the leader of a larger business will report to. The mastermind can serve this "board of directors" function and hold the participant accountable to fulfilling commitments to actualize plans.
We are all affected by our peers. Since it was my intent to create breakthroughs and succeed at a high level, I knew I needed to surround myself with like-minded people in an atmosphere of support. The group, facilitated rightly, becomes a breeding ground for creating a highly motivated state and focusing it on clear, specific goals.
3. Structured Plan Development
A Mastermind, utilizing the group dynamic, can run the gamut from a very unstructured brainstorming group to tightly structured methods of plan development and actualization. This particular group is relatively structured, as I felt that is what I needed.
4. Multiple Perspectives
I was looking for a diverse groups because I have found great value in having people from very different industries and backgrounds look at and give feedback on my plans. Jay Abraham, one of my favorite marketing experts, is an advocate for "importing" success strategies from different types of business into your own.
5. The Power of Shared Belief
There is an exponential effect to having multiple minds focused with belief on the achievement of a result. Having other people who are successful and credible see your goals as if they are already accomplished cuts right through your mental barriers like a machete through warm jello.
If you are at a place in your life where you are ready to break through barriers , consider starting or joining a mastermind group. A mastermind formed with the right people and managed effectively, can be the springboard for achieving at levels that may surprise you.
Reprinted with permission from the longer version of the blog at The Mental Game of Business.
Chris McNeil has won multiple innovation awards for web applications, is the founder of Pensarc Marketing and the creator of the e-Merg program that combines digital marketing with customer touch point optimization and team alignment.