Ever since Napoleon Hill wrote his groundbreaking book, Think and Grow Rich, successful people have been using mastermind groups to up-level their accomplishments and create opportunities for themselves and for others as well. Perhaps you have heard of mastermind groups but are not sure what they are and how you could benefit from them. In the words of Napoleon Hill, a mastermind is “Coordination of knowledge and effort, in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose.” Basically, a mastermind group is a group of people who communicate regularly with each other for the purpose of helping each other reach their goals. The idea of mastermind is taken from the habits of highly successful people.
Napoleon Hill noticed, for example, that Andrew Carnegie belonged to a mastermind group, which consisted of about fifty men. He surrounded himself with these men for the express purpose of manufacturing and marketing steel. In fact, he later attributed the entirety of his fortune to the power he gained from this group of people. Likewise, most of Henry Ford’s success became noticeable after he became close friends with Thomas Edison. Coincidence? Not likely. These examples simply show the power that comes from being surrounded by people who are interested in thinking outside the box and are committed to reaching not only their own goals, but helping you reach yours as well. While every mastermind group will have its own individual characteristics, there are some elements that should be present in order for the group to function at the highest level possible. These include:
A leader. A leader is an essential ingredient for a mastermind group. Without someone to provide direction and keep the session in line with the agenda, time could be wasted in unproductive chatter. This person may also provide individual coaching for members outside of the group sessions.
Member commitment. Because a mastermind group is only as strong as its members, participants must be committed to being active in the group. The success of a group depends on the willingness of each member to work hard not only on his own individual goals, but also on the goals of the other members.
Costs: Most mastermind groups require members to pay a fee to participate. The value of this feature is rooted in the fact that people tend to value what they have invested themselves in. The old cliché, ‘You don’t get something for nothing,’ rings true. When members must pay a fee for the privilege of participating in a mastermind group, they are likely to take it more seriously.
When highly motivated people join together to reach goals and make things happen, the result is often an up-leveling of success for everyone. Finally, you are not just relying on your own ideas and your own internal motivation. By making yourself vulnerable to the group, you are subjecting yourself to their ideas, their motivation and their accountability. Your goals become their goals. And their goals become your goals. Sometimes you need to be pushed. Sometimes you can’t see what is in front of you. Sometimes you need someone else believing that you can do something, even when you are beginning to doubt yourself. And of course, sometimes all it takes is being surrounded by successful people who are high-energy, highly positive and highly motivated to stay in the driver’s seat of their own lives. And if these people see you trying to crawl into the back seat of your own life, they will drag you back and make sure you stay on top of your game. A great place to try out the benefits of a mastermind is in a fitness boot camp. All the essential elements are there waiting for you. Harness the power of this decades-old success principal, and get back in the driver’s seat of your life.