“Why exactly do I need a mentor? After all, there is Google to answer any questions I might have.” Worry not, in this post, coupled with other interesting things about mentorship, we will be examining, “why you need a mentor.”
So let’s start.
There are 2 ways to learn, By mistakes, and By mentors, Mike Murdock says.
Having a good mentor can be liken to taking a car instead of walking, to a particular destination.
Before we dive into details, let me clarify who a mentor is by definition.
WHO IS A MENTOR?
A mentor is someone you have chosen to be guided by because they have the qualities you desire and they have achieved what looks like your set goals.
Usually he/she is someone you look up to and admire, and want to be like in one way or the other.
Your mentor is someone you have something in common with, someone you want to be like, and trust to lead you in the right part.
Now that you have an idea of who a mentor is, let’s move further.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF MENTOR
There are different sections to life. The same way, there are different types of mentors for these different life sections.
You could have a spiritual mentor, an academic mentor, a financial mentor, a career mentor, and so on.
Your mentor, of course, should be more knowledgeable and well experienced as well as more insightful than you are in the section which you have chosen them.
WHY YOU NEED A MENTOR.
Because a mentor is someone who has once thread the path you desire, they will, through their past experience teach and open your eyes to the things you are not getting right, the things that you are getting right (so that you can continue), and the things you can do right. A mentor makes your otherwise long and difficult journey short and a bit easier.
Here, I have categorized the importance of having a mentor into three;
A good mentor helps you to know;
- What you have been/are doing wrong.
- What you are doing right, and
- What you can do right.
Did you know that many great men and women we have come to admire today had (and probably still have) one or two mentors that accelerated their journey to where they are? Yes, that is true.
In our last post, THE LAW OF PROCESS . We talked about favor as one of the ways to hasten life process. This favor can come in the form of a mentor.
So, it’s important to note that whosoever you choose as your mentor has a significant role to play in the journey of your life. They have a tremendous influence on your decisions, actions and results.
WHO CAN BE YOUR MENTOR?
No doubt there are millions of mentors available. But do not settle for just any mentor. Do not go for the available, go for the qualified.
Another thing to note about mentorship is that you do not need to have a direct or physical contact with your mentor. Your mentor may not even know you.
If you are or want to be a writer for example, your mentor could be an excellent writer whom you enjoy reading his/her books. Someone whose books motivate you and teach you how to write better. So you buy more of their books and derive value from them. In this case, mine would be Myles Munroe.
If you want to be a motivational or public speaker, your mentor could be someone who is already renowned for being a public speaker, such as Les Brown. So, you listen to them on a regular basis via online or recorded audio.
An aspiring feminist might decide to choose Chimamanda Adichie as her role model, by reading about all that she has been involved with and taught as regarding feminism.
In general, whomsoever you spend much time with is your mentor. Through books, audios, and so on.
Who you spend your time with influences who you are, and who you become. They have a massive influence in your lives. You must choose them wisely.
Hence, before you choose someone as your mentor, make a thorough research about them, their past achievements and present. Don’t choose a blind man to guide you, you will both fall into a pit.
MENTORS ARE REPLACEABLE
You are not bound to any mentor by covenant. Once you realize your mentor isn’t living up to your expectation any longer, then you have every right to un mentor them (if there is ever a word like that). You have every right to walk away and choose another one.
A couple of years ago, I had a friend whom I admired so much, I loved her dedication towards God, and how she never missed church programs. While I was the opposite. I was motivated to be like her. I respected her, and so I decided to make her my spiritual mentor.
To cut the long story short, the last time I saw her, which was last year, she was half naked. She had changed, but not for good. She became the opposite of what I used to admire in her. I didn’t like that, and today, she is off my mentor list.
However, note that your mentor is human. He/she is allowed to make mistakes. Although, their mistakes should not be costing you your future.
Have and hold on to your own value so you don’t fall when your mentor does. This is important.
YOUR MENTOR ISN’T GOD
Because our mentors possess almost all the good qualities we desire (of course, if they didn’t, why would they be our mentor in the first place?), they appear perfect to us, and can make us forget that they are humans just like us.
One big mistake some people make when it comes to mentorship is placing such a high value on their mentor than they place on God. Never replace God’s position in your life with that of your mentor. Remember God Himself made your mentor, not the other way around. Your mentor is also a bi-product of God, just like you are.
Mentors are mortal, God is immortal. Mentors can fail and disappoint you, God cannot fail nor disappoint you.
You can admire your mentor, you can respect him, you can love him, but never worship him.
But remember, do not take your mentor’s help for granted. They are shaping your life not to repeat the same mistakes that might have dragged them down during their time in their own journey.
Now that you know that the two best ways to learn are; through mentors and through personal mistakes. How do you intend to learn? By mistakes or my mentors? If you asked me, I’d say by mentors.
In conclusion, having a qualified mentor is a way to limit setbacks and speed up your life journey. So, if you do not have one yet, you should consider getting one.
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