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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about how to use a virtual mastermind in your imagination when real life personal growth mentors are hard to find.

In this podcast you’ll find:

  • The pool of people that are willing to go as far as you are prepared to go is going to shrink as your growth expands.
  • Asynchronous means out of time. Synchronous means at the same time.
  • Asynchronous mentors would be people you may never get the opportunity to meet because they may be historical figures, or in a different part of the world.
  • Seek mentors where you can read their words, listen to their videos/audios, read biographies, embody what they did or learn from their words.
  • Napoleon Hill “Think and Grow Rich.”
  • Build a mastermind in your head. Inside your mind, you have the ability to interact with anybody you want.
  • Christianity tapped into this with the “What Would Jesus Do” movement.
  • A lot of us have a voice in our head that comes from an influential figure from the past: father, mother, sibling, etc.
  • You want to make sure the voices in your head are healthy ones. They are saying the right things.
  • If there is a voice in your head that corrects your behavior or guides your actions, they are a mentor.
  • You don’t lose your autonomy when you choose a mentor. They aren’t a substitute for your inner wisdom. They are the counsel you seek.
  • Russell Ackoff – systems thinking.
  • It’s not just the content of what a mentor says, it may be the way they approach an idea.
  • Knowingly or unknowingly you have voices that guide you, whether you like it or not.
  • Biographies are a great way to get to know a potential mentor.
  • Richard Branson “Losing my Virginity.”
  • TJs will look for mentors that have established they know how to make things happen. “That thing worked, so I’m going to follow this person and ask for guidance through their work.”
  • FJs emulate how people make others feel. “Who created the most harmony in the world?”
  • Your mentors are not necessarily the same type as you. In fact, you will likely learn more from different types.
  • If your inner mastermind all comes from people who are the same type, you may want to branch out.
  • With asynchronous mentors it allows you to construct a curriculum for yourself that you won’t get from one mentor.
  • Create the mentorship that will lead you down the path you want.
  • You are the arbiter of all feedback you have. You don’t have anyone to keep you on task.
  • So it is important to make sure you are implementing ideas and not just thinking them through. Let the world be your feedback mechanism. Calibrate in real time.
  • You have people in your mind already whose thoughts are already influencing you. It happens. Brainwashing keeps us from becoming feral.
  • These voices can become very unconscious parts of us. We think they are our decisions, but they are the total of all of the pieces of advice we have received throughout life.
  • Be aware of the voices already inside of you. Are those the voices you want influencing you? Can you add in new voices?
  • Guard the gates of your mind. What are you feeding your mind?

Referenced in this podcast:


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  • Melissa
    • Melissa
    • October 25, 2016 at 11:49 pm

    Wow this sparked a lot of thinking for me! I’m an INTP with a long background in recovery. I’ve heard a lot about firing the voices in your head that give you false information about your worth and the world around you. Flipping that on its head and hiring people to listen to/consult with instead is brilliant. As is knowing them so well that it’s natural.

    The other biggie for me is the idea of calibrating in real time. I spend so much time in my head that this idea of checking my thinking gave me different language to frame my execution that doesn’t commit me to have things perfectly figured out first.


  • Leo
    • Leo
    • October 20, 2016 at 8:21 am

    Thanks for mentioning Russell Ackoff. I have been looking around for material on systems thinking. :)

    I liked your ideas on creation of an asynchronous mastermind group and consulting with them in a structured way for specific things.

  • Charis Branson
    • Charis Branson
    • October 14, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Thanks for the comment, Dana! Something you said triggered something for me. We really are the product of all the influences in our head. I often think about how different we all are. Yeah, there are only 16 Myers-Briggs types, but there are other influencers like Enneagram, Graves Level, Zodiac sign, culture, etc. And you just added another – All the voices in our head that tell what is right and wrong. No two people will ever be completely alike.

  • Charis Branson
    • Charis Branson
    • October 14, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    Just put them up, Ed. Sorry it took a few days. :)

  • Dana
    • Dana
    • October 11, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    I’m really enjoying your discussion around mentors (and parenting, too) and the idea of soliciting feedback within one’s own mind to encourage perspective-shifting. It’s a good reminder that a choir of voices can live inside each of us and we have an opportunity to interact with those voices in a powerful, introspective way. My favorite example is one of my friends (ENFP) who likes to joke that I am the editorial voice in his head when he’s working on a writing project. With young kids at home, I find it difficult to make time to let those same types of ‘conversations’ play out in my own mind!

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