Your mindset, more than anything else, will dictate your future. I’m forever indebted to my first mentor, Rick (Rixter), for opening my eyes to the magic of mindset. He stressed how important the right mindset was for both setting and reaching my goals. At first, my understanding of this concept was simply intellectual. I believed it, but I didn’t grasp its truth at a deep level. That came with time, experimentation, firsthand experience and evidence. As I read, watched, listened and learned, I adjusted my thoughts and behaviours (very sluggishly, I admit), slowly gaining confidence in myself, expanding my horizons of possibility and what I could achieve, raising the bar, resetting my goals and taking on greater challenges. Perhaps I’m a little slow, but it wasn’t immediately obvious to me that those I knew who were doing extraordinary things were all thinking differently. It clicked eventually though, and I made every effort to massage my mind and tinker my thinking in such ways as to enable me to achieve more. My environment, experiences and upbringing shaped my thinking. I’ve identified four pivotal areas to catalyse change: Networking and circle of friends – the most vital factor. Get around people who are succeeding in areas you want to excel in. So much change in mindset happens by osmosis. Hang around an ordinary person doing extraordinary things and you can’t help but start to realise you are capable of the same–their ambition, confidence, determination and successes will rub off on you in a big way. Who are your role models, mentors, friends, acquaintances? Voracious learning. Over an 18 month period I devoured well over 100 non-fiction books, dozens of lectures and attended numerous courses. Every one of them had an impact on my thinking. Together, their compounding benefit can’t be overstated. A great number of people who knew me before and during this focused period of expansion began commenting on the significant changes they were seeing in me. Don’t focus on too narrow of an area for too long, either. Things that may not seem relevant or interesting now may be vital in the future. Be a life long learner on a wide range of topics. Goal setting. Aim as far out on the horizon as you can see. As you move a little closer, you’ll see a little further and can adjust your goals to again be as far out there as seems tangible. Forget your comfort zone. Being comfortable is an enormous impediment to growth. Get uncomfortable with comfort–it’s a recipe for stasis. Challenge yourself, stretch, learn and grow. What happens when you attempt or surmount a challenge is marvellous. You gain experience, your capabilities expand, your confidence grows, things that were uncomfortable become comfortable and your sphere of what’s possible swells. View your mind as a piece of clay and shape it to your greatest benefit.