Given his first taste of the All Blacks environment last year, only to then injure himself, he said there was some extra incentive to build on that experience to push on in the future.
"It fuels the fire in focusing on what I can do on the field," he said.
When he stepped into the international environment there hadn't been too much different to what he had experienced with Tasman and the Crusaders, but things at the All Blacks level were done well and players could concentrate on their contribution, rather than having to be concerned with others.
"As I said, I wasn't there really long but it was good to get the feel of a Test week and the build-up to that, but the feeling I did get was just nail your job," he said.
It had been a rollercoaster year with injuries at either end, yet he took confidence from it knowing there was potential to rescale the heights if he continued to work hard.
Strange injured his shoulder during the Super Rugby Aotearoa campaign but recovered in time to be included, as one of seven new All Blacks, named in Ian Foster's 35-man squad at the start of the international season.
However, a few days into preparation he injured his ankle and was unable to make an appearance for the side. He did recover in time to take part in Tasman's successful defence of the Mitre 10 Cup last year.
Strange said he had gone through a decision-making process to look at where his opportunities were and he was happy with his call to continue with the Crusaders.
He said he sat on his decision for 'a month or two' but the fact he loved being part of the Crusaders made him ask himself, 'Why leave?'
Having All Blacks locks Sam Whitelock and Scott Barrett involved, at least until 2023, was good for him in terms of competing and lifting his game.
"We all care about the team so we all want the best for it and to help each other get better," he said.