‘Mental’ Role Models: Why Good Mentors are Slightly Nutty

One may be apprehensive to admit it, but there are some similarities that exist between the visionary leaders society admires, and the madmen they reject. Since mentoring makes one a leader by default, we thought it’d be interesting to account for the ways being ‘slightly nutty’ enhances the mentoring journey:

Nr. 1: They see the invisible

At LifeXchange, we teach that a good mentor sees the good in a mentee, before it even exists. Not unlike the grand delusions of the insane, mentors see something that’s not there…yet. The difference of course is that they make it an intention and exercise control over it. Imagining something into existence is, strikingly, also a biblical principle. Hebrews 11:1-3 says “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen […] so that what’s seen isn’t made out of what’s visible.”

As human, our ability to imagine ranks as one of the things that separate us from animals. Not only can we use it to strategize, but also to hold before us the image of what we aspire to be. Learning to use it correctly is critical to success as a mentor and leader.

Nr. 2: They talk to themselves out loud

Having a public conversation with yourself doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time to visit the ‘funny farm’. In fact, it may even be healthy. Psychologists suggest self-talk helps make you smarter by clarifying thought processes, prioritizing decisions and committing to goals. The difference? It’s how you talk to yourself that counts.

At LifeXchange we utilize affirmations in the pursuit of excellence. We teach that positive self-talk is the way forward in changing for the better. Creating new thinking patterns thus involves daily practice for our mentors and they, in turn, cultivate the same awareness in their mentees.

Nr. 3: They just don’t make sense

Spending your time with someone who doesn’t want your advice, your good intentions or sometimes even your conversation may seem like a big waste of time. If you’re looking from the outside in, the mentoring journey often just doesn’t add up. Unless, that is, you’re looking at the bigger picture.

Mentoring isn’t an exercise in instant gratification. We at LifeXchange know that real, sustainable and life-changing transformation only happens when you buckle-up and commit your time for the long haul. Essentially, what we’re asking you to do is wear them out with your love. Show them you’re not going anywhere. In their world, that may just be the craziest thing of all.

by Esther Hamman

Think you’ve got what it takes to be a force for good? Sign-up to be a mentor today!

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