by Adam Zack — March 30, 2022
“A good mentor hopes you will move on. A great mentor knows you will.”
– Leslie Higgins “Ted Lasso”
A lot of people, in fact most, love that show Ted Lasso. Being of limited patience and deeply rooted in “Oh, come on, be serious, that’d never happen” vision, I am not one of them. I only gave it a one episode audition, so I’m clearly not a good judge. I do get regular updates from my wife on how sweet the show is, how optimistic it is, and how it really inspires with its combination of innocence, hope and perseverance.
Mentoring is a privilege and an extraordinary responsibility. The chance to deeply, permanently impact someone’s life is the rare reward that only happens occasionally. Some people never get the opportunity to mentor anyone. Many people never get mentored. It’s an extremely unselfish undertaking that requires an abundance of time and patience. More than that, it takes a deep, authentic sense of caring about the success and growth of others with absolutely no room for the want of personal gain for you. Your reward is purely in the pride of seeing another person succeed and knowing that you had a hand in that. There is no bragging allowed in mentorship. A few years ago I found out my brother-in-law Steve mentored a mentally challenged young man. Through time spent together, he had helped this kid get through occupational training and acquire a full-time job, even helping him navigate public transportation. Steve never mentioned, not even once, that he had been mentoring anyone. He believed in him, and knew he would move on. And he continues to be a positive influence in his life to this day, from what I hear, although he never mentions it.
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