How To Be An Inspiring Mentor Who Changes Lives

Have you ever had a life changing moment when someone did or said something that completely changed your perception about life?

I had one a couple of years ago while I was sipping a steaming hot coffee in my mentor’s home office. I asked my mentor how she dealt with unexpected life and business challenges and she said: “You can’t control what happens in life but you can control how you look at it. Change your perception and you change your life.”

I still think of that advice every time I’m going through challenges (or as she calls them life lessons).

Perhaps you’ve felt a similar shift too when a kind stranger said something inspiring to you in passing that made you realize things could be different, or you heard a brave speaker talk about his emotionally grueling battles which made you realize you could beat your own.

We’ve all likely felt a shift in our lives from encountering people who’ve helped lift us up. It’s very likely they have the following traits in common.

1. They Focus On Service

Mentors focus on the statement “How Can I Help?” They have a genuine passion for helping others largely because they want to give back to the community and also helping others makes them feel great.

A study by the University of Buffalo found that when people focus their attention on someone else’s wellbeing, it actually reduces their own stress levels. Giving back can also make people feel like they have a deeper purpose in life making them feel happier. Everyone wins with mentorship.

2. They Believe In Abundance

A mentor once told me: “Never believe in lack. There’s enough abundance in business for everyone.” Smart mentors understand that sharing knowledge and contacts doesn’t take anything away from them. In fact, realistically, the more they share, the more likely they are to receive.

For example, think of the last time a person you met helped you in business. Wouldn’t you be more likely to help this person in return compared to someone who didn’t help you?

3. They See Your Strengths

An inspiring mentor focuses on your strengths, not your weaknesses. If you focus on your strengths, you are more likely to feel happy because you feel competent you can carry out tasks.

For example if your strengths lie in writing but not in accounting, your mentor may suggest that you continue writing in your business blog, but leave the accounting to an expert. Focusing on your strengths is likely to boost your confidence helping your business.

4. They Feel Complete

Life changing mentors see themselves as complete and don’t expect anything from you in return for their help. (Although they will graciously receive your help if you offer.) Why is this great? Well, as you may have experienced in life or business, giving with expectation feels pretty awful for both people involved.

Conversely, those that give without expectation tend to serendipitously meet the right people at the right time and have a huge amount of luck because of their positive and helpful attitudes – a pretty cool side effect from a not-so-common state of being.

5. They Are Charismatic

Have you ever noticed inspiring mentors are usually interesting and engaging people? It’s likely they have many intriguing life stories involving challenges and struggles they’ve overcome to make them the people they are today.

Don’t believe me? The next time you are in a meeting with a coach or mentor, gently ask them about their history. It’s likely they’ll have a lot of interesting stories to share that you would never have imagined…

Be The Mentor You Want To See In The World

So there you have it. Those are five common traits of life changing mentors. If you looked at some of these traits and thought, wow that’s me, or if you’ve been searching for ways to give back to your community, check out MentorshipBC to view the 50+ mentorship organizations in British Columbia that are looking for entrepreneurs just like you to mentor.