4 Realities I’ve Faced Since Joining A Mastermind Group
#1. My work wasn’t as good as I thought it was
I admit it: Since I started writing, I’ve looked at the work of others, and, rather than be full of praise for it, thought “Why is their work doing better than mine?”
With the benefit of hindsight, the answer was obvious. Their work was doing better because it was better, and my failure to see this was damaging the progress of my own work. I was spending too long feeling ‘hard done by’ and less time working at my craft.
I realised that rather than be envious of them, it would benefit far more by learning from them. To do that, I had to put myself into a position to be able to do so. After I had sucked up my pride, I started to reach out to my idols. It started with small moves, like leaving comments on their work and engaging with their social media activity. Then it got bigger and bolder, like reaching out through email or phone calls. Eventually, I was invited to join a Mastermind group that included some of the biggest and best creatives out there.
This changed everything.
Since that day, my work has vastly improved — but only because I faced, and accepted these four realities.
My Work Wasn’t As Good As I Thought It Was
Before I joined this mastermind group, I had enjoyed a couple of minor successes with my writing. I had managed to get into a couple of the esteemed publications at the time. I had hit my first 1000 followers. So when I joined the group, I was confident I could hold my own.
The reality couldn’t have been more opposite.
I scanned the names of the group’s participants. It was immediately obvious I was looking at the cream of the crop, including some of my creative idols. I was nervous to interact with any of them. Eventually, I was convinced to put one of my articles up for feedback. And it was destroyed.
There was notes left on almost every line. Some suggested new headlines. Others told me my conclusion was weak. There was grammatical errors galore. Some even suggested I rework it entirely. But no advice hit harder than one of the final comments — “this is good. But it can be much better”. It was in this moment that I realised my work was far from perfect. In fact, it was so far more perfect it was laughable.
Yet, rather than being hurt, I was smiling. It dawned on me that I was in the perfect environment to improve.
The moment I got over this hurdle, the group became a lifeline. And the improvements to my work in the months since is testament to all they have taught me.
I Wasn’t Patient Enough
Unless you experience a stroke of serious luck, or find the perfect niche at the perfect time, your journey to success will take a lot longer than you wish.
The percentages work against you. The odds aren’t in your favour. That’s why many give up when the going gets tough. I will admit there’s been many times I’ve wanted to throw the towel in because things haven’t happened for me fast enough.
One day, I reached out to the group about my frustrations. They made it very clear what I needed to do — slow the hell down. Many of the individuals in this group have put years of work into what they do. Their display of patience is nothing short of admirable, and this gives them the ability to think longer term. They make decisions for the long term. They worry less about the now, fret less about the small things, and focus on their bigger goals.
They taught me that when you understand how long the path ahead is, it gets a lot easier to walk it, and observing the people in my mastermind group has helped me to not only understand this, but internalise it.
I Was Looking At Things The Wrong Way
When I first started on my writing journey, I took a lot to heart. When you spill your thoughts and feelings on the page and get a negative response — it hurts. When I started my business, everything that went wrong cut me to the core. I let it all effect me personally and it left me strained and depressed.
The people in this group helped to change my perspective. They told me that you can flip the negatives and see them for what they really are — positives and opportunities.
When something goes wrong, don’t see a problem, see an opportunity. When something doesn’t work, don’t see failures, see lessons. Most importantly, they taught me that rather than seek to blame others, start to take ownership of your life. This perspective shift is a huge one. Once you start to reflect on your own actions and decisions instead of blaming others, you can begin to evaluate and improve.
Don’t Try To Go It Alone
I was always told that entrepreneurship, or any creative journey for that matter, is a lonely one. You are left to carry the stress, strain and the weight of the pressure on your own back until you either get to the top, or get crushed by it.
So when I struggled in the early days, I never reached out to anyone. I told myself this was my shit to sort out. This is how everyone does it.
Fast forward to my mastermind group arrival, and I realised I had it all wrong. These individuals, no matter how successful, are constantly asking each other questions. They seek reassurance. They face doubts and difficulties every single day, and many of them choose not to face them alone.
I was inspired by this. Why struggle on alone when there are others going through the exact same as you? Now, I always reach out. And the responses of the group always help to show me the way out of my problems.
This simple change in outlook — from being threatened by those better than me, to reaching out to them — has led to the quality of my work improving to an extent that’s hard to put into words. It’s also led to friendships with many of them. Some have even become mentors, offering me guidance and regular feedback on my work.
I was too slow to realise the benefits of building a network of people who are more accomplished than you. Holding resentment or bitterness towards people’s success will only slow down your own journey to it, and blind you to the simple fact —you’re not yet good enough to be successful, and you need other people’s help in getting there.
My advice to you? Find a community of people that are willing to invest in you, and return the favour. Take on board their advice, borrow their traits, and become the best you possible.
Your chances of becoming a high-achiever like them just got bigger.
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