A Good Mentor

I am so excited to be sharing with you my second video!!! This video came about as a result of much reflection on the value of mentoring relationships and the role of mentors in my life in my spirituality, education, and social life. Enjoy!

In this video, I share with you some tips and thoughts on what to consider when choosing a good mentor. Having mentors in the various areas of your life, school, work, family, or church, can be a very valuable asset when you are able to pick individuals who are a good fit for you.

Who is a good mentor?

  • Someone who has experience in a certain field.
  • Someone that you trust.
  • Someone who can provide you with the advice that you need.

BEFORE you choose a mentor, consider asking these four questions:

  • What do I want out of the relationship with this person?
    1. Academic advice and direction?
    2. Spiritual guidance?
    3. Learning a new skill or technique?
    4. Learning a new life lesson?
  • Do I believe that I can learn something from everyone?
    1. Whether the person you end up choosing is a good or a bad mentor, you will still be able to gain some valuable experience from your interactions with this person.
  • Am I comfortable approaching this person for advice?
    1. This is more of a gut-feeling, where you assess your comfort level in a very personal way.
    2. Not everyone needs to be your mentor…although you can still learn from everyone (as in point #2). So, if you are uncomfortable, you don’t need to build a full relationship with that individual.
    3. If the person you are considering ever reveals a negative attribute about himself/herself, AND you don’t like that attribute, BELIEVE THEM and RUN AWAY!
  • Does this potential mentor genuinely care about the wellbeing of others?
    1. This will be possible to assess through the interactions of this person with others and their history serving as a mentor for others.
    2. For instance, an academic advisor who has a history of helping their students achieve their dreams and goals would be a better choice over a more prestigious advisor who doesn’t care about the wellbeing of his/her mentees.

DURING your relationship with your mentor, consider asking these three questions:

  • Can I share things with my mentor without feeling afraid of his/her feedback?
    1. Now that you have an idea of what that person is like, you will be able to gauge the level of how much you should share with your mentor.
    2. Unfortunately, certain mentor/mentee relationships maybe riddled with jealousies or disrespect, which results in a lot of stress and fear for the mentee.
    3. If you feel that your mentor only wants you to do the things they tell you to do and don’t leave you with a lot of room for innovation, you may begin to feel afraid of flourishing through your own independent thinking and creativity.
    4. A good mentor listens to your exciting or sad news and helps you navigate the situation for the best outcome for you.
  • Have I learned everything that I needed to learn from this mentor at this point?
    1. As you grow, your needs with change, and you may need to find additional mentors to guide you on your next steps.
    2. If the answer is “yes”, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to cut off your relationship with your mentor, but it means that you may need to invest time, effort, and attention to other mentoring relationships.
  • Is the relationship still about you and moving you forward?
    1. This question is somewhat related to #1 in that you would want to ensure that the relationship is not about what your mentor wants for you, but rather what you actually need!
    2. Has this relationship magically turned around where you are giving advice to your mentor?! This is a sign of something unhealthy beginning to form.
    3. If the mentor is beginning to manipulate the conversations to force their opinions on you, be careful not to waste too much time on trying to argue your way out of things that you know will not work for your path.

Thanks for watching this video! I hope you found some helpful tips to aid you in choosing mentors in your life ventures.

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