The Souls Desire Is Expansion - Shazia
As I close my eyes and drift away to a land where there is love, health, peace and blessings. I wanted to take the time to think and reflect. The truth is the other day daughter asked me "Mama, how do you get a mentor? Where do they come from?" My son was quick to respond: he said "They just come, they find you." He said this with so much confidence. His words resonated.
When I first started out on twitter, It was and still is a mission to inspire and share my learning and experiences as a teacher candidate. As teachers / educators this is what we strive to do. To share learning, inspire others, it is about continuous learning and finding mechanisms and solutions for improvement. This journey has evolved from reflecting at the micro - cosm level of the classroom environment to the global level, reflecting at the global scale. To discuss complex issues, inviting a narrative where many would stay away from, this requires risk - taking and courage. Whilst trying to remain on the periphery of the issue, but still be able to discuss with detail and depth is quite the balancing act, at times tilted.
Thinking and discussing these issues is quite simple, to voice them on a global front is risky yet, what is better? To remain silent about something you care about, knowing full well your words may have a capacity to invite an inquiry. Or live in regret. Whilst we must be selective to decipher the battles of the hearts. Doing nothing and living with a regret may even be more harmful.
Issues that are sensitive and topical are difficult to discuss. Sometimes it is an audacious someone who believes in you, who never gave up on you, who never stopped to care, who saw you in the most rawest and ugliest of times and still was there. Who was there through the positives and negatives. That person believed in you, the one who was able to push you to take risks.
This is the calling of a mentor. A mentor remains committed. However, a mentor / mentee relationship is not always going to be rosy, because remember it is like any other relationship. In this case of two people who decide to commit to each other. This relationship is a learning process. It could be metaphorically assimilated to that of the horse rider and jockey. They work together, a taming of one another, a journey into a knowing. It is a journey of growth from both perspectives. It is a moulding.
The mentor / leader possess a state of higher consciousness, in other words has a greater life experience. Has been there, done that, made mistakes, learned. Yet still pushes through the journey of life. The mentor is there for you. Whilst not offering an answer through the struggles or issues of the mentee, is a simple guide. A guide allowing the room to stretch his / her thinking, to find the constructive solutions through trial and error. This is what makes the mentor / mentee relationship a beautifier.
Some points to consider if you are trying to find a mentor
Personal Connection As A Mentor
2015 I also had the opportunity to mentor undergraduate students. This was a very rewarding experience, because I was able to pass on my own learning as a mentee to other students who were grappling with academic and life struggles. This experience raised my own awareness, it made me think about how important it is to have caring individuals who really do authentically care about making an impact, helping others to make a difference in the life of another.
Transitions from any level of schooling, whether it be from Junior to High School, to High School to University, to University to Work, entrepreneur, higher ed or just creating a loving family, it is key to have individuals in your life that help, assist or simply listen at these crucial stages. Any stage or changes in life are sometimes stressful and at times capsulated with fear. As humans we fear change. It is a natural instinct. We like routine, the familiar because it doesn't threaten our survival. With the assistance of caring individuals, it does not mean that we are not strong enough to do anything alone. It simply means that we are strong enough to realize that we need help. A guide, a friend, who we can share the joys and upsets of life through the process of a collective evolution.
From The Perspectives Of A School Setting
In a classroom where there are students who are struggling we could have buddy programs where students assist other students. This could be part of a year long program. The mentor / mentee would receive a reward of some sort at the end to symbolize their commmitent to each other. This could also serve to promote character education traits as well.
This strategy could be worth investigating for the students who excel in subject areas to assist students who need help with the same subjects. It does encompass the idea of tutor, but with the additional aspects of building character. A training component would be needed as well. It could be targeted as part of a leadership program.
At the university level it is key to have students from Upper Years to be available for new incoming students. Of course this is prevalent in most if not all universities. It is crucial to communicate with new students that help / assistance of various types is available for them. So that they know they can reach out.
Sometimes a mentee may not be responsive even though a mentor knows they need help. Follow - up is crucial. This is a preventative measure. It will allow the mentee to realize that there is a loving and caring individual who does care. Their willingness to open up and converse with the mentor will increase.
A great mentor / mentee relationship acts like an anchor. It strives to be there through the positives and negatives, whilst allowing a growth. As the sail boat, journeying to return to the anchor.
MacArthur Fellow's Characteristics
The MacArthur Awards are given to individuals who have made contributions to humanity. Below are a list of characteristics that could enhance the potential of character education programs, or simply the individual.
Dedication: The words of this being are dedicated to Fred Cuellar, a truly inspiring, humble and kind human being. Who I believe in, thank you always for your love! And to all mentors the ones who appear and the ones that are found, know that what you do makes a difference, and know that you are loved. Thoughts to inspire with love and kindness! :)
Originally hand written on July 6th 2016
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Our thoughts, to invite and inspire. With Love & kindness. :)