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Importance of having mentorsJuly 12th, 2020

Importance of Having Mentors

I really believe in having a diverse group of mentors, and mentoring others as well.

Benefits of having mentors:
1) Gives you perspective: You don’t know what you don’t know. There are risks and pitfalls that you might have never considered, or an innovative way to achieve something.
2) Life skills: One mentor taught me how to deal with an extremely difficult person − skills you can’t learn from a book or a course.
3) Learn by example: Hearing real life stories from my mentors has helped me tremendously in my spiritual growth and my own beliefs. Also finding inspiration and the motivation to keep going during the tough times.
4) Saving time: When someone knows you well, and can see the situation from the outside, their advice is tremendously valuable. They can cut your progress by years by giving you sage advice.

Benefits of being a mentor:

1) It forces you to sort out your knowledge and experience into concrete ideas and systems on paper, and to pass onto another human being; and then being challenged, so perhaps clarify and tweak the idea until it’s solid!
2) Seeing people you mentor succeed is an extremely gratifying feeling. It gives you energy to move forward with your own pet projects.
3) Building community: Idea is a magical thing that spurts and evolves, and you never know what the final outcome might be. I like sharing my knowledge, creativity, energy and contacts with others. A little bit of passion and thinking outside the box can get many projects started. People like to be involved in worthwhile projects!
4) Attitude changing: I have often met two types of young people − one is the naive with 150% confidence, thinking they can do everything and finish it tomorrow. The other is the type that don’t know what’s out there, so they are feeling their way around the world and taking baby steps. A mentor is good to give them a reality check. For the first type, get them to do more info sessions and research so they get a firm grasp of the reality, and years of sweat and tears it takes to make something happen. For the second type, provide encouragement and recognition along the way to help them build up their self esteem.

Power of BeliefJanuary 10th, 2018

If you doubt the power of belief – even for just one moment – you are forsaking your most powerful ally: your brain. If you doubt that changing a few beliefs can dramatically alter the trajectory of your career, then your career may fall far short of its true potential.

I recently read a research study, Placebo Sleep Affects Cognitive Functioning, in which researchers made up an elaborate ruse to convince people who got a bad night’s sleep that they actually got a good night’s sleep. Here’s a bit of what the researchers told their test subjects…

(Participants were) informed of a new technique whereby the previous night’s percentage of REM sleep could be determined by measuring the lingering biological measurements of heart rate, pulse, and brainwave frequency the next day.

P.S. This is all nonsense; the researchers made it up.

Sure enough, sleep-deprived subjects who were told they slept soundly actually performed better on the PASAT test of auditory attention and speed of processing.

This, of course, is yet another instance of the placebo effect. Researchers Christina Draganich and Kristi Erdal point out that while the placebo effect is commonly thought of in the context of drugs, it can also extend to many elements of everyday life:

Intoxication
Weight loss
Rash reaction to fake poison ivy
Altered neurochemical activity in Parkinson’s disease
When it comes to the placebo effect, the details matter, in ways that are difficult to anticipate. One study, for example, found that test subjects only demonstrated an increase in mental acuity when they paid full price for an energy drink they believed would improve their mental acuity. Those who paid a discounted price saw no benefit (Shiv, Carmon, and Ariely, 2005).

In short, you don’t need more training to be qualified for a promotion. You don’t need caffeine to wake up. You don’t need a good night’s sleep to feel rested. It just takes a credible researcher in a professional setting to tell you that you have what you need.

You have to believe that good things are headed your way. There are many ways to accomplish this that don’t require a white-coated researcher, including meditation, affirmations, and positive thinking (see more ideas below).

Never underestimate the power of belief. It works both ways. If you constantly tell yourself you are not capable enough to get promoted or to get a raise, you won’t get either. If you believe you will fail, you will fail. If you fear sickness, you may well fall ill. If you feel your career is headed nowhere, it will probably head nowhere.

The first step to health, success, achievement and progress is to believe. But don’t take on this challenge by yourself. Surround yourself with credible evidence that good things are headed your way. Spend time in the company of positive, supportive people. Research techniques that you believe will work for you. Do whatever it takes to build a strong belief in your mind that success is in your future.

Read Part 2 of this story….

Author’s note: Back in May, I published an earlier version of this article; not many people read it. Since I believe this content can help other people, I changed the headline, image and much of the text, and then re-published this version. Belief requires persistence.

Bruce Kasanoff is a ghostwriter for entrepreneurs and executives. Learn more at Kasanoff.com. He is the author of How to Self-Promote without Being a Jerk.

Images: n0nick/Flickr.

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