After I graduated from college, it was easy for me to feel lost in a world of uncertainty. I looked around me and suddenly felt very small when everything around me felt too large and unattainable. I felt very alone. Now, this is a piece written about mentoring, and my circumstances after graduation may make it seem like I am far from able to give any advice about mentorship. But, I found my way forward and became an editor. I was given the chance to take my time and work through, The Art of Mentoring by Harold Taber Jr. I not only learned what it means to mentor others, but also what it takes to be mentored. As part of my job, I got to analyze the book so deeply that Harold’s stories and wisdom began to seep into my life and changed the way that I looked at mentorship, and now I get to share that wisdom with others.
A key part of our nature is to be learners. We learn when we go outside, in our education, and we can always learn from others. Mentorship is about having a willingness to be teachers and learners alike. It’s this tug and pull relationship that gives a little and receives so much more in return. At the core, it is a relationship between two people who take the time and effort to impart that wisdom within one another. As someone who had felt so lost and alone at one point in my career journey, it was a beautiful reminder to see that there were mentors willing to walk alongside me in the midst of that confusion.
If you’re reading this and thinking about how “mentorship” just doesn’t seem applicable to you because of your major, your role, where you are now, I can assure you that mentoring surpasses merely business. As I said before, mentoring is a relationship between two people. This relationship will undoubtedly seep into every aspect of your life. If your mind is so preoccupied with something else, then you will be out of line with your goals and productivity. Our personal lives are a part of us, it’s not easy to compartmentalize our life when we are truly struggling. A mentor can help walk you out of that mental fog that clouds your vision. So, my advice to any young professional out there, whether you’re in college, just graduated, or starting out your career, is to seek out a mentor. Think of a mentor as someone who has life experience that you admire and want to receive wisdom from.
Seeking out a mentor dwindles down to what you want to be mentored in. If you’re thinking in terms of your career, find someone that has gone before you in that career path, and ask them if they could retrace those steps with you. It’s about seeking the right person who will lead you forward in your pursuits. Professors can be great mentors if you take the time to ask them about it and commit to it together. Ask for professors to refer to someone else they may have in mind based on your career goals. There are also so many resources, like the alumni hub or career center, that schools provide to help foster relationships and push you forward in those goals. Find someone in your life that you will be able to learn from, take that wisdom, and impart it to others.
As someone who has been there and felt that twinge of uncertainty, it’s worthwhile to seek out that person who will ease those nerves and guide you forward. Start with what you can do, and go from there. The Art of Mentoring had a huge impact on the way that I viewed mentorship, and if you only start by picking up the book and reading a few pages, I hope that it will draw you in so much that you desire to seek a mentor out or be a mentor to someone else.
If you would like to learn more about Harold professional journey, along with his tips for successful Mentorship, purchase a pre-sale copy of his book, The Art of Mentoring on our Store page.
Click this link to read the synopsis of the book or order a presale copy today!
Contributor: Jessica Carrera, Associate Editor at TSE Worldwide Press, holds a B.A. in English with a concentration in writing from Biola University. She aspires to touch the lives of others through her words.