October 28th, 2019

Derek Sivers

I have three mentors.

When I'm stuck on a problem and need their help, I take the time to write a good description of my dilemma, before reaching out to them.

I summarize the context, the problem, my options, and thoughts on each. I make it as succinct as possible so as not to waste their time.

Before sending it, I try to predict what they'll say. Then I go back and update what I wrote to address these obvious points in advance.

Finally, I try again to predict what they'll say to this, based on what they've said in the past and what I know of their philosophy.

Then, after this whole process, I realize I don't need to bother them because the answer is now clear.

If anything, I might email to thank them for their continued inspiration.

Truth is, I've hardly talked with my mentors in years. None of them know they are my mentors. And one doesn't know I exist." Derek Sivers

After communicating with Derek recently, I realized how true his statements above are. Many dilemmas are answered by looking back at the data sets of past moral, philosophical, scientific, political .... from quality mentors. In my case, my mentor tribe is vast as I pick and choose from the many quality people that come and go in my life.

We all need mentors in our lives that give us another perspective on life with the intention of helping us hone our choices and decisions that dictate our future. People often say that you are an amalgam of the five people that you surround yourself with. I firmly believe that in some ways the five or more mentors that you draw your inspiration and spirit from maybe even more important to the who you are.

Teach your kids to think through a problem as if their mentor was there answering questions and watch how often they resolve the problem on their own. They have the data sets downloaded from years of observation and discussion with their mentors. The empowering and liberating feeling of doing and being for self when solving a problem is straight growth. The mentor is always there if truly needed. Mine were. Thanks Frank!

Dr. M