When I think of the personal mentors in my life, I am reminded of their sage insights, their discerning candor, and the genuineness of their own “walk.” Mostly, I recall their unflagging commitment to me – guiding me forward, sometimes back, often up and down and around, and sideways a few times, to be sure, but always in service of me – and my personal growth and development.
My personal mentors took nothing for granted and were grateful for everything. They sought meaning every day, in every act, and within each moment - carpe diem. They engaged living with awe and wonder, and they savored every breath as an opportunity, with gleam in their eyes and zeal in their hearts. They embraced ambiguity for all of its teachable potential. They were authentic and real.
My personal mentors did not parade about or impose their values; they simply lived them – simply. They were authoritative but never authoritarian. They radiated confidence and competence borne of their own life’s lessons learned well. They felt secure enough inside that they could be safely insecure outside – whole and holey. My mentors had no need to be right: as my personal mentors, my truth is what mattered.
My mentors cheered me on and championed me. They often disagreed with me and as often provoked the hell out of me. But they empowered me, always with my best interest in mind, to look within myself – at times through the lens of their wisdom, at times through the prism of my own uncertainty – and ultimately in search of helping me clarify who I was, am, and could become.
A personal mentor is at once affirming and challenging. They dare to ask necessary, heuristic questions that promote their mentee’s personal reflection and self-discovery. They are exemplars, models, teachers, adventurers, advisers, and guides. They are journeymen and pathfinders. As seasoned elders, they are further along in their own life-journey than those they mentor.
Personal Mentoring Services (PMS) provides a uniquely special relationship. A mentor is that experienced trusted traveler who accompanies another’s search for meaning, wherein the journey is itself transformative. A mentor is the person you can turn to for honest direction and guidance through your life. A mentoring relationship can last a lifetime.
As your Personal Mentor, I look forward to being this source of inspiration for you.
Author Note: Dr. Glenn B. Gelman is a Clinical Psychologist and a Personal Mentor
© 2014 Northern Illinois Counseling Associates, P.C. (NICA), Personal Mentoring Services (PMS)
Dr. Larry B. Gelman, Dr. Glenn B. Gelman, All Rights Reserved.