I believe that finding a series of mentors is a crucial part of your success story. Time is not infinite and so you need to continue to find more efficient ways to operate your life. You should always be on the look out for ways to save time, and what better way to save time, than following somebody who has already trodden the path that your size nine boot is just about to step on.
But I want to be original and innovative?
Forget what the schoolteachers told you in school! You can still copy somebody and benefit from the situation at the same time. Think about learning as a great big sponge cake. Most sponge cakes will be made from the same ingredients, and the only thing that sets them apart is the icing and decorations that are supplanted on top. The icing and the decoration are your originality and innovation, but it will be a great help if you can find someone who already knows how to make the sponge for you. It is just simply more practicable and sensible to live life this way.
Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen and a push in the right direction – John Crosby
I have a series of mentors, both past and present, which all help me be a success. I am going to write about each of them to try and explain why they are important to me. The first mentor I want to talk about is Marko Saric. Marko Saric is a social media expert who operates his own highly successful blog called Howtomakemyblog.com.
You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself – Galileo
As soon as I met Marko Saric I knew he was going to add value to my life. I liked him instantly and found out through conversation that we had a lot of the same interests. I had just started to meditate and Saric had just gone through a Vipassana Meditation programme, and I had also just started my own blog, and Saric was the owner of his own blog, designed to help people create blogs of their own.
Using our common interests I started to develop a bond with Saric through enthusiastic conversation. When somebody talks to you about something you are interested in, then unless that person is a complete wally, you are more than likely going to start a friendship. I had another thing going for me as well, in that I worked for him at Poker tournaments around the world. This enabled me to show Saric that I was an extremely enthusiastic worker and wanted to improve my life in so many areas.
Example is not the main thing in influencing others, it is the only thing – Albert Schweitzer
I tried my very best to make a good impression on Saric. I wanted him to be inspired by my story, because I knew if he was, there was a good chance he would go out of his way to help me out. So I continued to tell him stories about my goals and also ask him for advice on how I could improve my blog. After the inspiration comes a need to be useful. When he hired me to cover poker tournaments I was showing him that I could be trusted to work alone and to deliver the high expectations of the company he works for. I also started to give him ideas for blog posts and have started to write guest blog posts for him also. All of these actions have not only created a mentor/student bond but I also class him as a very close friend, something that I find naturally tends to occur with your mentors.
When I read this blog post, it sounds as if I deliberately set out to manipulate Marko Saric into being my friend, and I suppose I did. In fact I believe that most conversations held by humans are designed to be deliberately manipulative. We all want and need something, and there is no shame in admitting that this is the way that our minds works.
When I read Blink by Malcolm Gladwell I talked about thin slicing, and this is exactly what I did when I met Marko Saric. I knew he would he would have a positive impact on my life after meeting him for just a few minutes. He has single handedly designed and created this blog and continues to help me out with any questions I may have about blogging and social media.
Yesterday I published my first ever guest blog post and it was Saric who published it. It was called How to Write 100 Consecutive daily Blog Posts and I have already started to feel the benefits of this mutual arrangement because I have had increased traffic on my blog. It was the creation of this guest blog post that gave me the inspiration to write this blog post.
Photo courtesy of Christmas w/a K (cc @ flickr.com)