by Dr. Cindy Briggs
There is a topic I have spoken on so often… I have called it a mentor sandwich. I have told large groups that it is important for them to HAVE a mentor, and also BE a mentor. My exact quote as been, “you always have something to teach someone else, and you always have something to learn.” And I have meant that statement… welll, somewhat!
For years I followed my own advice. I had a mentor who had been with me since my graduate school days. He was my dissertation advisor, boss, and later a friend. I called him even 10 year after I graduated to still get his input…although our paths had taken different directions. I also have continued to mentor people my whole career. I am always working with individuals helping them get on their specific path.
This all sounds great– but why would I write a blog post about it? Well, one day I looked up and realized I no longer had a mentor. I didn’t have anyone that I was going to for advice, or assistance, or even a good kick in the behind. I started to believe that maybe I didn’t actually need that person. I have a ton of education, years and years of experience, so what was someone else going to do in my life? (Yea, this was pretty arrogant)
Then I found myself having dreams that I wasn’t sure how to begin. I was an entrepreneur, a business coach, and a business professor….but my dream was to write a book, host a podcast, and do some new creative things… and I had NO IDEA where to begin. None! Nothing!
Let me back up just a bit– I think many of us follow people on social media that we learn from and emulate in some way. I do. I find the best of different people and I try to put those things in my life. One of the people I have followed for years is Mary Marantz. To this day, I cannot remember how I found Mary. At the time I started following her, she was a wedding photographer. A nationally known one, but still a photographer. That was not in my career path.. or really even my interest. I just liked the content she put out there, and I enjoyed watching her and her husband Justin in their day to day lives. I would interact with her some on social media, and she ALWAYS replied. From her wedding business, she launched courses, and then a podcast, and the wrote a book She was now moving into spaces where I wanted to be (the ones I was so unsure of how to begin).
Then it happened— Mary put out there that she was opening up some coaching spots. She was taking on a few people and helping them reach a goal of their choice. It was perfect. I was sold! I signed up to be coached by Mary in early 2021— the goal being to write a book!
The goal of this post really isn’t about my dream of writing a book (I will share that later!) The goal of this post is the reminder that we can all use a coach and/or mentor. These are different things— but the end result is having someone to help guide you, give you advice, help you fulfill a dream.
A few take aways for you:
- Look right now… are you a mentor sandwich? Do you have someone mentoring you, and are you mentoring someone else? If you are not, make a plan to implement this soon. Determine your goals and find a mentor or coach who can help you reach those. Also, remember YOU have something to give back! YOU are able to help someone on their journey.
- We always have new things to learn. I believed (for a moment) that I knew what I needed to know. I believed I had reached a level where I didn’t need any help (again… so wrong). Take time to write down 5 new things you would love to learn or do. Dream big! Just write them down for now.
- Vulnerable and authentic. When you are in a mentoring/coaching relationship– you need to be you. It can be the ugly parts, the uncertain parts, or the dreamer. You just have to agree to bring YOU to the table.
Order Mary’s best selling book, Dirt! You won’t regret it! Clink the book to order from Amazon.
If you would like to learn more about business coaching, or any other entrepreneurial topics– contact us at www.cindybriggsphd.com