Five reasons why you need a mentor

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A mentor could be someone you know personally or a key figure in society with great leadership abilities whom you can learn from.

A mentor is likely to be operating on a level which you are aiming towards in a similar field to yours. They are likely to display characteristics of a noble person with integrity as well as a spirit of perseverence.

In the Oxford Dictionary, mentor means:

1. An experienced and trusted adviser

2  An experienced person who trains and counsels 

With a mentor in-person,  you will have the opportunity to meet with them and possibly shadow them to observe the way in which they work. With a virtual mentor, you will invest in buying their books, CD’s and attending their conferences (as and when possible).

I have a virtual mentor, someone that I connect with. The first time that I watched one of Joyce Meyer’s teachings, I resonated with much of what she spoke on; her insecurities, challenges and character flaws. My husband already owned many of Joyce Meyer’s books and tapes which came in handy! The ‘Battlefield of the Mind’ is one that I hold very close to my heart.

What a mentor will offer;

1. Keep you focused – distractions will come, life will ‘throw things at us’ but we need to remain focused on reaching our goals. A mentor will assist us with this.

2. Encouragement – there will be times that we will become discouraged due to obstacles and challenges. We may even question whether we made the right decision. A mentor will remind us why we chose to take this path and help push us through the ‘dry’ season.

3. Valuable experience – walking side by side with someone who has already been down the road that you are travelling on. We might like to think we can do it alone but that is sheer pride.  

4. Honesty – A mentor will remain honest as;
A. They are unlikely to have had a prior relationship with you and therefore their advice will be unbiased.
B. They are unlikely to be paid for their service therefore they are not conditioned to tell you what you want to hear.

5. No room for excuses – we have a tendency to justify why we have not completed a task or goal. It does not draw us any nearer to achieving our goals but simply gives us ‘rest time’ when the going gets tough. A mentor has the ability to see through our excuses and will not condone procrastination as they know how much it will hinder us.

Have you considered seeking a mentor?

Perhaps you already have a mentor – please share your experience.

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34 thoughts on “Five reasons why you need a mentor”

  1. I see that I “liked” this post last time, but didn’t leave a comment. The mentor I had during my graduate teaching stint made all the difference in the type of teacher I eventually became and she provided a great model I would call upon when it came my turn years later to mentor new teachers. Mentors can give insights books and articles never will be able to approximate.

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  2. yes, I completely agree with you, phoenica. No matter how matured or how successful we become we still need someone to guide us during the walk of life. But sadly we are losing our values and respect for seniors in this artificial age.
    Thoughtful topic..Thank you

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  3. Although not officially deemed mentors, I feel there are some ladies in my Community Bible Study class who are true mentors to me. They are patient with my questions and are never judgmental. They look to guide and provide concrete spiritual references when I ask about something. It’s a blessing to have them around me!

    And, again unofficially, but my Seester and brother are both mentors to me. They received all of the patience in our family where I received none of it, so are a constant reminder to: calm down and be nice!

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    1. Rose Mary – I would say these two women at church are your unofficial mentors. They are clearly sowing seeds into your life and steering you in the right direction.

      Patience is definitely something that I need more of but I am slowly getting there.

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  4. I’ve had a mentor since I was 15 yrs old. He has definitely helped me grow to become the man I am today. I am also looking for more mentors in different areas such as blogging and investing.

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  5. Phoenicia- I never had a mentor but boy did I wish I did. There is always someone who knows more than you. I have helped so many people along the way with their business so I guess I would be called the mentor

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    1. Arleen – whether we like it or not, somebody knows more than we do and has already walked along the path in which we are taking. We should never get to a point where we think we have made it. There is always more to do and know.

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  6. I’ve been blessed having had a couple of wonderful mentors in the past, and I’ve been a mentor on several occasions. There’s a program I’ve looked into that provides virtual mentoring for young disadvantaged people and I’m hoping that by the end of the year my work schedule will even out a bit more so I can pursue that as a commitment for 2016.

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  7. Mentors are fabulous. It’s a win win relationship. Great mentors find that mentoring very fulfilling and really love sharing their knowledge and experience. What’s great about having a mentor is the more you do the more they become vested in your progress.

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  8. I don’t know that I could have succeeded in my career without the man who mentored me. He also taught me how to pay it forward and mentor others in the same business. Invaluable!

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  9. I did have a mentor when I was just starting my career in communications. I worked with a man who had been a journalist at the now defunct New York Herald Tribune. Even though we were now in a different business, I learned more from him about journalism than I did at the paper I had worked at previously.

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  10. Hi Phoenicia. I’m a firm believer in mentorship. It’s greatly help3ed me in my journey as a professional writer, and as a Toastmaster. And I try and reciprocate any mentoring I can to those who feel they can learn from me. Mentoring makes the world a better place!

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  11. I know how important having a mentor can be. I’m glad that you found a mentor who is especially beneficial to you. Hopefully you will continue to benefit from what you learn from this person for a long time. I’ve had mentors in the past and I’ve been a mentor as well.

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  12. Phoenicia when I first went into business for myself many years ago, I went to the SBA for various programs they offered. Not sure if they still have as much help. At the time they had a mentor program and I was assigned a wonderful woman who fortunately was happy to meet in person. It was a wonderful opportunity and brought in all the aspects you mention here! Thanks for bringing up that positive memory.

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  13. Having a mentor is great provided that you have someone who really is competent. A lot of mentors are not. When I started doing business in Sweden after living abroad for most of my life I needed a mentor to learn about how to handle the tax authorities and other rules and regulations about doing business in my country. Selected a partner from Grant Thornton and that was a great experience.

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  14. I think the most influential person, or mentor, in my life was Dale Carnegie. After reading his book “How to win friends and influence people” I developed a lot of confidence and a wholly unique way of looking at things. I also overextended my reach – career wise – only to discover that I hadn’t over-reached. I was quite capable of doing what was needed and more. This kept me motivated and energized to always keep moving forward.

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  15. In my working career, I had a couple of mentors, although we never had a formal mentoring relationship, and I learned a lot from them. I think a mentor can be very valuable, but I also think not everyone who is experienced or doing well on the path you’re on makes a good mentor. There is a certain skill to being a good mentor.

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