Friday, November 12, 2010

A Mentor

One of the ways I continue to learn is by reading, listening and associating. This is a term I have learned from some books, audios and events I have attended. Three years ago I had never even heard this activity; read, listen and associate. But looking back to how I learned in grade school, high school and even college, in some form of all three or just only one I used the skill of improving by reading, listening and associating.
Every professional athlete has had a coach, every person that has accomplished anything worthwhile has had some kind of coach or mentor in their life. I just listened to an audio recently and it talked about mentorship and coaching. The speaker mentioned how important it is to pick a coach for any area that you want to improve in. The example he used was any parent that wants their child to learn how to play an instrument, they are probably going to seek out someone who has had some results in the area of music. He/she is not going to go and pick anybody off the street to help their child to become proficient in music. Just listening to that concept does not sound that revolutionary. If I want to personally improve my physical body, I will go out and seek someone that works out everyday. I will not go out and look for someone that has the buttons of a television remote molded to their hand.
Why is this so important?
Every new year- and we are only six weeks away from 2011- individuals will set out for their New Years resolution. People might want to improve their finances, fitness, family relationships, etc. The question is; once you pick that area that you want to improve in, who is your coach? Who is your mentor?
I am guilty myself. I tell myself I am going to improve in this area and what happens? Two weeks in and I start justifying the reason why it is not that important.
Albert Einstein said, “We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” What he is saying there is if I knew how to get to success I would have been there by now. And if I don’t know how to get there, who is the one teaching me?
Now ask yourself.
What if you had a coach? What if you had a mentor? What if you had someone that set a goal, even a little one and put a timeline for that goal? What would happen?
If you have ever had a coach you know what would happen? Why it is so important. We live in such a fast paced and instant gratification world today, it is very difficult to look out six weeks in advance. Whatever happens, whether you change a habit, improve your finances, or become reacquainted with some old friends, regardless, 2011 will happen in six weeks.
Give it some thought. Perhaps this might help with any area you need help in. I have certainly not arrived. I am right now in search of a spiritual mentor. I don’t know what I don’t know. And I know some that do know; and if I know more I can get better.
A great book that has had an effect on me in the area of coaching and improvement is The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson. With 2011 approaching fast this is a book that can make a powerful impact on your life just by doing things slightly different over time.
If you are serious about improvement find someone with great results in that area, mentor with them if you can and do what they did to get there. And before you know it, you will had read, listened and associated with the top 1%.