You have probably heard me say time and time again, the importance of finding wise leadership in your life. Surrounding yourself with people who you want to be like is pivotal to developing in character, integrity and wisdom.
In fact I believe one of the most important things you can do to develop yourself is to be mentored and led by someone you look up to and want to become like.
Having a mentor is one thing. Finding the right one is another. Finding someone who is willing and has time can also be a challenge.
At this stage and season, Mark and I have the honour of having a few mentors in our lives. However it has not always been that way. We started off with just one. And he was younger than us! However, in character and integrity he was years ahead. Since then we have the privilege of being mentored by several leaders in different areas of our lives.
And it has been truly life changing.
Looking back over the last decade here are some things we have learned about finding mentors. Four things that I wish I had known a decade ago:
- 1. Find someone accessible
You don’t need to be mentored by the Chief of staff or the CEO of the company, or the head pastor/leader of the church. Chances are people in those positions will need to be mentoring the next in line to their job. Their own key leaders will need their attention and direct mentoring. Perhaps that is not you. As a junior Doctor it would be inappropriate for me to ask the head Doctor of my department to mentor me. He needs to be mentoring the other lead doctors directly in his care.
There are however, doctors ahead of me, who are perfectly equipped to mentor and lead me.
Beloved get someone to mentor you who is only a few steps ahead of where you are. You will find that they will be far more accessible to you and they will be closer to where you are to offer you practical tips, resources and wisdom. It will not have been that long ago that they were where you are. Plus they will probably have far more time to do so.
- 2. Find someone with integrity and character
It is important to be mentored by someone whom you not only respect by what they have achieved and accomplished, but also by the person that they are and the kindness and character with which they live their life. Don’t be fooled by the accolades that someone has after their name if you don’t respect who they are as a person and how they conduct themselves. Remember you will most likely become like your mentor in many ways, you want to model your life after someone whose character and integrity you admire and respect.
- 3. Find someone who sees your destiny and calls it out!
One of the reasons that people recoil against being accountable to someone is that they innately feel like they are constantly going to be getting in trouble. However, mentorship is having someone that you can be open and honest with, knowing that they will continue to hold you accountable to the destiny they see on your life even if it doesn’t quite match where you are right now.
Your mentor should constantly see you for what you are called to be, not for whom you are at the present. Even in those tough, vulnerable moments where you may fail or be discouraged, your mentor will hold you accountable to what you are called to be and remind you of that when you need it most.
- 4. Find someone you genuinely connect with and like
While there is always something to learn from everyone, if you are going to be mentored on a regular basis by someone, let it be someone with whom you genuinely connect with and like. You will both enjoy it, you will find yourself so much more open to learning and being open if you have a genuine, organic connection.
These four things are things we have found to be key things we have learned to look for in our mentors. However even if you only have 1-2 of the above you are still winning!
I hope this helps.
And if you have anything to add that you have learned please comment below.
You are deeply loved and richly cherished
Dr Christine Greenwood
Reign in life
P.S. In many ways my deep friendships can also act like mentors in my life. Friends who are integris and full of character. Friends who call out my destiny despite where I might be at. Friends who I connect with and want to be around. Friends I can be accountable to. The right friends can be the best mentors.
Wink. One of my declarations is that I am mentored by John Maxwell, Rachel Hollis and Oprah! Watch it come true!