What is a mentor? Simple question right? I ask this because for years I had one, or thought I did and they turned out to not really help me much at all in the end. They derailed me more than anything. So I will give you some advise on what to look for instead to help you find someone to help you with your quest for success.
1. Find someone who matches your career focus. What is it you want to succeed in and go after that professional person.
2. Communicate openly about what skill set you are looking to achieve and what you would like help them to groom you in. If you aren’t open to change or get advice it won’t be beneficial.
3. Have regular meetings to check in. The best thing you can do is regularly meet to gain perspective and check in with your mentor. Learning is how you become successful.
4. Watch them at their game. You learn by doing and by observing. See if you can tag along with them to meetings or find out what conferences or events they may be at. They are your best resource for improvement and to learn from to be your best.
5. Failure is possible and is OK. It is a learning possibility and not a setback which is why a good mentor will have failed as well. Learn from your mistakes and listen to the advice on how to correct them.
So listen, learn and succeed with a good mentor. I made my mistakes with the one I had and now I hope you can learn something too.
I recently took a trip back out to California and it dawned on me that folks there seem to be consistently in overdrive.
Don’t get me wrong, I Love California. Born, raised, wed and raised my own child there, but it has been nice to live away from the hustle and bustle. Everyone is always tapped in to something and always in such a rush.
Cars zoom in and out of traffic lanes, people push past you to get in line for coffee, airport terminals are crammed with people, it has become a constantly moving and sensory overload environment if you are not in it everyday.
Small bites nowadays. I can take small bites. I love my home state but I also like being less rushed.
Lately it has been a bit frustrating to get things done that require my full attention.
There are individuals who insist that they are correct in all aspects of the daily grind yet they don’t know the first thing about what I’ve been doing to make the flow of work or life for that matter efficient and effective. They assume that I am doing things wrong.
I have spelled out in words or in actions a plan, a strategy and still They insist that I am not doing right by them. It is truly getting to be a day to day beat down.
Today I am just venting and tomorrow I know will be a better day but this last week has been a real let down all around.
So my outlook is to take the small bites of good in a day no matter how insistent someone is that you are doing something wrong. Every small bite will fill you with goodness. Just keep filling yourself with small bites because that will give you some hope you will make it through the day.
There are people in the world who keep things to themselves, they don’t want to rock the boat because often times they feel they will hurt others feelings or they will get hurt themselves. They also want others to like them.
There are also people who are open, speak up, are seen as overbearing, intimidating and aggressive because they are go getters. They aren’t afraid to rock the boat and get an opinion or what is being hidden in the room or conversation out there. They are candid and to the point.
What is a problem is that both groups have difficulty coexisting in the same setting at times. We still make judgments on people who speak up and say what others are too afraid to say themselves. Those that don’t want to speak up silently ridicule those who are candid and then can’t interact or work with individuals who are open and want to get the issues out there to work through the tough stuff.
How can we get through these issues if people can’t come together? I don’t have the answers but I do know that people need to be given a chance and people need to not be judged on their words alone.
For one, look at the impact people are making. If the person is candid and upfront and they are making a difference then maybe it is a good thing. Learn to work with it and find a way to interact with those who are candid, open and overly zealous. You never know, you may just learn something. It also goes the same for those who are more open, learn from your quiet counterparts, what is it that you can gain from their more reserved demeanor that you can incorporate into your life?
The two can coexist with hard work and determination.
How many remember that line from Gypsy? I may be dating myself but it seems that we always have to entertain people everyday.
We have to smile, put on our face, go out of our way to make others happy when in fact who goes out of their way to do the same for us?
I was told recently that I should smile more. Really? Smile more. I’m not a fake and phony smile kind of gal. I smile when I need to or want to and don’t do it on demand so to tell me I have to smile more is too demanding. It is making me perform something I am uncomfortable doing. In fact, it makes me feel as if I have a perma-smile on and can’t get it to go away. Like the Joker in Batman.
So if I want to entertain you with my smile let me be me. Let it come naturally and while I am being genuine.
Forcing someone to do something or be someone they are not isn’t entertaining at all. If you feel the need to see someone smile, make them laugh. Best entertainment ever.
We all have a part of us that lies dormant. We don't want to show our true colors to people or are afraid to be ourselves at our jobs or in front of others because we'll get chastised for being abrupt or outspoken. We might even be shun from groups because we don't fit in with their ideals.
It is sad that people can't allow others to be who they are and speak their mind. It is unnerving that one can always be made out to be the 'bad guy' when others can do or say what they want. It is sad that some must lie dormant and create undue stress on their lives to get by in this world.
Individuals need to start looking at themselves and see that they are not always right, they are not always to push their ideals onto others that prior planning does create less anxiety in those they work with daily.
Sorry if this doesn't make sense to most, to me it does.
We all learn at a different pace. Some of us might be able to look at something once and instantly have it saved to our memory bank; others it might take two, three, maybe even four times before it becomes solid.
I know from experience that it can be easy and hard to pick up on things even if you know the concepts. Take for instance switching jobs within your same field. You haven’t left the field but you still need to learn a ton about the new company, the people, how things work, you are learning as you go.
I take each of these moments with stride. I’ve learned over the years that you can’t rush learning. People use to say ‘cram for your classes’ but you really can’t. You need to absorb it all otherwise you don’t know the culture, the people, or the field itself.
So to me… To learn is to take it all in. That is learning.