As human beings, we all need guidance and support to grow and reach our full potential. That's where mentorship comes in. Mentorship is a powerful tool for personal and professional growth. Having a mentor can be an incredibly powerful tool for personal and professional development, providing a wealth of knowledge and experience that would be difficult to acquire on your own. I know firsthand the impact that a good mentor can have. Throughout my adult life, I've been lucky enough to have several mentors who have shown me the ropes and helped me navigate the ups and downs of both my personal and professional life. They provided me with valuable advice, guidance, and encouragement, and I credit much of my success to their mentorship.
This is why mentoring students and paying it forward has become an important part of my life, and I have been doing it for over a decade. When Angie, a former high school student of mine, a successful educator herself now, reached out to me last December, I was both surprised and honored. Here’s an excerpt from her letter:
"I just had to say that I took your book (Why Not You? How to Become an Empowered Woman) on my Christmas camping trip and I cannot put it down. I never realized how much our lives mirrored in so many ways it's amazing that I've known you for half my life yet learned so much about you in your book. I am writing you to formally ask you if you would be willing to take me on as a mentee. I want to be you one day. And reading your book reignited the spark in me that was dimming for a while. …I would like to have someone that is willing to help me grow not just professionally but personally as well. I would be honored to have you as a mentor if you'd have me as a mentee."
How can I refuse Angie’s request? This is a great responsibility and honor, and an opportunity to help. We meet once a month to discuss her career, growth, skills, and personal development, and it's been incredibly rewarding to see her progress already. I know she’s going to not only achieve her dreams and goals but also help others achieve theirs. Angie embodies the qualities of a true go-getter - she's hardworking, resilient, and persistent. These are the traits that make her the perfect mentee, someone who is constantly striving to be the best version of herself, both personally and professionally. As a mentor, it's incredibly rewarding to work with someone like Angie, who is willing to put in the effort and take the necessary steps to achieve her goals.
Mentorship can come in many forms, whether it's a formal program at work or a relationship that develops more organically. Regardless of how it comes about, finding the right mentor can be life changing. It can help you unlock your full potential, expand your network, and open new doors of opportunity that you never knew existed. But mentorship isn't just about finding someone to show you the way. It's also about giving back and helping others reach their own goals. That's why, as someone who has benefited from mentorship, it’s important that I continue to pay it forward by serving as a mentor to others.
If you're committed to achieving your goals and to making a difference, find a mentor. Start by thinking about the areas where you'd like to grow and the kind of person who could help you get there. It could be a former teacher or professor, a colleague or supervisor at work, or someone you admire from afar. Reach out to them and ask if they would be willing to serve as your mentor and be clear about what you hope to gain from the relationship.
Remember, mentorship is a two-way street. Just as you'll benefit from your mentor's guidance and support, they can also benefit from seeing you grow and succeed. So don't be afraid to take the leap and seek out a mentor – it could be one of the best decisions you ever make.
Good luck and go after your dreams.
Take that first step today. Don't wait anymore.
CTA: Have you experienced the power of mentorship in your personal or professional life? Share your mentorship story in the comments below and inspire others to seek out mentorship and achieve their goals.