There is something about working together with like-minded people and accomplishing great things together. Truly, no man is an island and this is no more apparent than in joining a Mastermind group. When more minds work collectively, greater things are achieved collectively too.
What is a Mastermind?
But first, what is a mastermind group? You might have encountered this term before. Especially if you are into personal development and entrepreneurship (as most of my followers are). Wikipedia defines it as a “peer-to-peer mentoring concept used to help members solve their problems with input and advice from the other group members”. The main idea of this group is solving problems with the help of other members and the experiences they bring to the collective. And by doing so, all members benefit as they willingly learn and grow from each other.
There are obvious benefits to your businesses and connections when you join a mastermind group. In addition, the experience can also help with the other aspects of your personal and daily lives.
The concept itself can be traced to Napoleon Hill, the author of the well-known book Think and Grow Rich. In his 1937 classic, Hill discussed the use of mastermind groups among successful American companies during that time. He further described mastermind groups as two or more people coming together with the sole purpose of solving a specific problem.
“No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third, invisible intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind [the master mind].”
— Napoleon Hill
Mastermind groups work when members engage each other with respect and genuine trust. This is important as they challenge each other to be better versions of themselves and raise each other up from within. Through the use of intelligent discussions and brainstorming sessions, participants can create smart solutions to particularly hard problems.
Aside from what was mentioned above, there are a lot more benefits from joining a mastermind group. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Participants of such activities have reported improvements in their mental and emotional health as well as an increase in business opportunities. From real accounts of these attendees which I have found online and some from my own experience, I was able to come up with a definitive list of what one can expect from a Mastermind group.
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1. Join a supportive and exclusive community of like-minded people
When you join a Mastermind group, you get to be with people with similar persuasions and looking for the same things you are. This is where exclusivity comes in. By aligning yourself to a group that is suited to your liking. Whether you are a single Mom building an online store or a student looking for tech internships, there will always be a mastermind for you. This is where exclusivity comes in. And with such small and intimate gatherings, they can easily transform from a group that holds weekly meetings to a support group of genuine friends. And pretty soon, members can ask assistance from anyone and at any day of the week.
2. Be filled with collaborative and synergistic energy
There is a big difference between a group that is forced together and a group that wants to be together. The first group tends to be disjointed and does minimum effort in doing tasks. They focus on finishing quickly rather than the quality of their output. The latter however, puts communication at a premium and freely exchange ideas with each other. This is where collaboration happens and each member plays a role that they are committed to do. As such, a great deal of synergistic energy is generated and the outcome is ultimately miles better then the individual parts.
3. Opens your mind to new and bigger ideas
One way to broaden your thinking is to expose yourself to different opinions and views of other people. Together with healthy discussions with other members in the group, you get to see a different way of thinking which in turn generates new, bigger, and brighter ideas. Which would never have been possible without other’s influence.
The different perspectives from other people can also help you see things in a different light. And the experiences of others may help you be appreciative of your current situation.
4. Get genuine advice and feedback about yourself
Being in an intimate group such as in a Mastermind allows members to open up about issues that are otherwise hard to do in a big group. May it be about business, relationships, or personal stuff; each member have a chance to raise them to the group and have everyone give honest and real advice.
Through this process, one can take away true valuations of oneself, free from biases of the outside world. Feedback can also be personal in nature and not just about businesses or careers. Understandably, it can be quite daunting at first, but hearing undisguised truth about oneself can lead to greater breakthroughs in the long term. Plus, doing this in a safe place with people you trust can be more palatable than you think.
5. Have a sounding board for your ideas
This is perhaps one of the more important benefits of joining a Mastermind. By having members evaluate your ideas and plans, have them play the devil’s advocate, or just give their second, third, until the N’th opinion, you can be sure that you see things clearer and in different dimensions. Making sure that when you finally act on your ideas you are as prepared as you can be.
6. Have access to more resources
Each member of the group brings with them a different set of resources that everyone can benefit. From access to others’ personal network to specific knowledge or information that is of value, you as a member can always tap into them. And if used as a group’s resource, taken together can be more valuable than taken separately.
One good example of a resource you can leverage is the rich experience of other members. Nothing is more valuable than having a personal network replete with the right skill sets and experience that you can have clear access to. And in a mastermind, group members are highly encouraged to share these personal resources with others.
7. Learn new things and add to your experiences
Participants often cite the value of learning new things from talking and listening to discussions of the group. With a rich tapestry of experiences and backgrounds of the members, it is a guarantee that there are always new things to learn from each other. And as engagement and sharing within the group deepens, experiences are inevitably broadened.
8. Have a wider network
This is fairly self-explanatory. As more and more people you encounter, the higher your chance of widening your personal network. But what’s especially potent in a mastermind is the repeat encounters you will have with each member and over time may can lead to introductions to their extended networks.
9. Experience breakthroughs in your personal and professional life
An excellent mastermind group have the capacity to improve and grow the lives of each member. And as one member experience breakthroughs in his or her life, other members may also benefit directly or indirectly. The adage “a rising tide lifts all boats” is very much apt in this situation.
10. Increase your mental and physical well-being
It has been observed that successful mastermind groups tend to have members with a healthier mental state. By achieving goals together as a group and spending time with people you are comfortable with, you release a lot of happy hormones that can bring positivity to your overall mood. Being part of an awesome group can also give additional energy to members and improve their physical state.
11. Be more confident with your life – take back control
Having a positive set of friends can give you a great deal of confidence going forward. By engaging you in positive discussions, helping you analyze things in a much clearer and faster way, and giving you constructive criticisms, you inevitably grow much more confident in yourself. And with the help of others, you take greater control of your life, as well as make confident personal and business decisions more frequently. You are no longer constrained with the rules that limit you. Rather you design your own destiny according to how you want things to be (and not what others tell you to be).
12. See problems much clearer
This is two-fold. First by verbalizing and sharing your problems with others, the problem automatically seems a lot more lighter than before. And with the help of others who are, unlike you, unburdened by bias and baggage, the solution is much easier to find.
Second, the explainer effect comes into play. As you explain problems to someone else, you oftentimes see the solution present itself in front of you. Mainly because as you discuss the problem, you also dissect the details within. And as you do so, you unavoidably make new analysis and come up with a better appreciation of the problem.
13. Be more accountable for your own success
In a mastermind, you share your dreams and goals to the other participants. Through the use of proper discourse, and with inputs from other members, your commitment to your success is further cemented. Also the more people are aware of your plans, the higher your commitment becomes. These people become your accountability partners, assigned to guide and remind you to keep on the path of your dreams. But ultimately though, your success is in your own hands.
14. Inspire you to be a better version of yourself
One thing about working with a team is that you get to work with different people of varying skills and personalities. And in a positive group like a mastermind, working with others can also give you the inspiration to be better in all aspects as you try to help others in need. Because only when you are much improved yourself, can you set out to help others improve themselves as well.
15. Develop more positive habits
Perhaps the most important benefit you can get from a mastermind is replacing old, self-limiting habits with new, success-driven habits. This is not an easy process, nor is it quick. But through repetition and practice, and with the help of other members in the group, it is very much doable. And its effects, long-term.
The benefits above are why the concept and practice of masterminds are increasing in many parts of the world. It has truly grown in an unprecedented way. Participants, in their own words credit their success largely due to their Mastermind groups. The great Jim Rohn said it best, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”. This is no doubt the very foundation of what a mastermind group is.
There are many anecdotal evidence and stories that show how such communities have improved the lives of many professionals and entrepreneurs. That is why it is worth considering joining and even forming your own Mastermind group. You not only help others become better, you can also be rewarded handsomely for it.
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