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John Marvin

If You Find Yourself Stuck, Become a Mastermind

Joining a “mastermind” group could inspire you and help you answer those tough questions.




If You Find Yourself Stuck, Become a Mastermind

Form a mastermind group

Have you ever made a plan or created a growth roadmap for your practice and then something happened — like a big rock rolled down, blocked your progress and instead of finding a way through you gave up and retreated back to your comfort zone? Does that sound like you? 

We experience forward momentum but then we encounter a little friction and — BAM! — we stop, retreat, we take our ball and go home. Give up. We’re done. Good night … 

Then it’s tomorrow and guess what? That rock is still blocking our path. Yeah, so what? We can opt to see the rock for what it is — an obstacle to work around — and keep going or we can say well, I liked it here anyway so I’m staying. Too often, doctors take the latter approach to managing their practice.

Get out the pick axe and keep moving. Life is full of bumps and obstacles and lots of bruises. Who said life was easy? Who wants easy? Easy is boring! Easy is for people who don’t have a clue what is on the other side waiting, waving its flag, saying come and get me! Come and see what this side is like — it is awesome! 

I don’t believe I have ever met an optometrist with a really large and successful practice who isn’t excited about what they do. Come to think of it, I have never met an optometrist who is really excited about what they do that doesn’t have a large successful practice! Coincidence? I don’t think so. But which comes first, the attitude or the success?


We all hit obstacles, every one of us. Many times, we hit a rut and think we are the only one. No one understands. This only would happen to me… oh, here comes that pity party. 

How do we get that momentum back? How do we pick ourselves up and try again? How do we change our thinking so that we don’t feel like we are out of options? Albert Einstein said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” Think about that. If you have a problem, how can you solve it using the same brain that created it? 

There is a simple solution to so many of life’s problems and it is not an age-old secret only available to the wealthy and wise. The answer is to create a third mind. But how? By masterminding with others who can truly help you. So, if you have a business quandary, join a business mastermind group and bring your problem to the table. You will be amazed at the number of ideas that become available to you — ideas that you’d never think of yourself. If you are unaware of an established mastermind group, then create one yourself by inviting other like-minded eyecare professionals to join you. Explain how working together to solve problems can help each other as well as help everyone’s patients. There are solutions out there that your mind alone cannot create — you need the power of a mastermind to get your forward momentum back. 

With more than 25 years of experience in the ophthalmic and optometric practice industry, John D. Marvin writes about marketing, management and education at the blog. He is president of Texas State Optical. Contact him at


This article originally appeared in the March 2017 edition of INVISION.


John D. Marvin has more than 25 years of experience in the ophthalmic and optometric practice industry. He is the president of Texas State Optical and writes about marketing, management and education at the blog. You can email him at


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