Bryce Cartwright insists he has learned the lessons of a lacklustre 2018 season as he aims to transform his Titans career on the back of "hard work".
The 24-year-old played just 14 NRL games last year and spent the majority of the latter half of the season playing for Tweed Heads after coach Garth Brennan finally lost patience with his inconsistent form.
Brennan told NRL.com recently that Cartwright was in the best shape, physically and mentally, that he had seen him after an outstanding two months of work in the pre-season.
The former Panther said a change of mindset had played a key role in that transformation.
"You can't turn up and expect things to happen. You need to put in the hard work," Cartwright said after Titans training on Tuesday.
"Last year I got here late and probably didn't put enough hard work in to set a real good foundation for myself.
"That is what I am trying to do this year, work hard every day."
It is easy to say, but Cartwright has walked the talk so far this pre-season.
He spent time with family in Sydney after the 2018 season finished but returned to the Gold Coast two and a half weeks before the start of pre-season to get stuck in to extras with several of his teammates.
Long sessions with the Titans' number one trainer Nathan Peats down at Burleigh's Pizzey Park gave Cartwright a kick along in his quest to start the 2019 season in tip top shape.
"I started training with the boys, with Nathan Peats and did a bit with Ryan James, so I could get in decent shape and hit the ground running," he said.
"Peatsy is a freak. He is a machine with everything he does. We did a lot of running, a lot of weights. It was good to spend time with him.
"I am trying to put my best foot forward and train really hard because there is so much competition. We've got great edge back-rowers here and a lot of great front-rowers now. We might move Ryan James to the edge as well."
Cartwright has played five-eighth at stages throughout his career but has been training on the left edge with Keegan Hipgrave. It is as an edge back-rower that he said he felt "most comfortable" and where he aims to play this season.
Cartwright is on track to achieve his goal and credits Titans head of performance Dan Ferris, who has returned to the club after a stint at Manly, and his right-hand man Joel Grech for assisting him to reach peak physical shape.
"Dan Ferris has been massive for all the boys. Training has been awesome and everyone is fit and strong," Cartwright said.
"It has just been a different type of pre-season. I have never really done anything like Dan Ferris's training where everything is high speed and there's a lot of power work in the gym.
"There have been long amounts of running combined with short and sharp [drills]. I think that has benefitted the boys a lot."
Cartwright said the Titans were "more than capable of playing finals footy" but needed to make the most of the pre-season and the two trials against the Cowboys and Broncos in order to start the season on the right note.
If he can play his part in that, Cartwright can put the woes of 2018 to bed and the criticism that came with it.
"It is in the past. I can't do much about it now. I just want to move on and not play another year like that again," he said.
"I'm not on social media. You hear [criticism] when you are out and about but I only care about the opinion of people that matter."