Stage 4 Meeting a Mentor
Sometime around the Call to Adventure, heroes encounter someone, young or old, who has experienced a similar Call to Adventure.
This person is a possible Mentor, a helper and support person on your own problem solving Hero’s Journey. Mentors are living proof that scary, even terrifying, Calls to Adventure can be resolved. They too had a similar Call that upended their lives and created a significant life problem. They too experienced SEPARATION from their old life and found themselves overwhelmed with fear and sadness. They too had to undertake task after task to gradually address and resolve their problem. Such people are well placed to pass on to you (the next Hero) information and skills, provide words of encouragement and maybe the occasional ‘kick in the pants’ to get any reluctant heroes moving.
At this point in your Hero’s Journey, you may be convinced that finding a solution is impossible, the whole thing is totally unfair and disaster is imminent. But …
A Mentor is someone who has done the very thing (or something very similar) you are about to do, and not only survived but thrived. Mentors will help you learn, one mistake at a time, that you are more than you think you are, more capable than you know and that you had better get moving.
Mentors come in all shapes and sizes
Mentors help us when we are lost and afraid
Warning: Some Mentors may appear as pains-in-the-arse. Such Mentors may appear to block our efforts to resolve our problem. This may be the manager who asks us to lift our game, our partner who says our behaviour is not acceptable, or the teacher who says ‘can do better’. It may even be the colleague who for some reason, drives us crazy. Such people are asking more of us, and we usually don’t like it. But what if lifting our game is the very thing required to resolve our problem?
Sometimes Mentors ask us to do the impossible – like get the witch’s broom!
- In difficult moments of your life, has someone appeared to help? Have you gone looking for a Mentor?
- Have you met people who were supposed to be helping you but it felt more like a hinderance? Did they ask you to do things you didn’t want to do?
- What did you do with these people? Avoid them? Argued with them? Dismiss them?
- Was what they were asking of you of any value? What might happen if you did what they requested?