It's all too easy to become caught up in sin and lose sight of your relationship with Christ. A spiritual mentor can be someone who is open and honest with you, letting you know when you need to refocus your attention on God. As a result, they can keep you from continuing in sin and urge you to live a life that is pleasing to God.
Before You Continue...
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What does spiritual mentoring mean?
The Holy Spirit, the mentor, and the mentee form a spiritual mentoring relationship. The mentee strives to learn what God is already doing in his or her life through this relationship, and thereby grows in friendship with God, identity in God, and knowledge of God's call.
How do you ask someone to be a spiritual mentor?
However, asking someone to mentor you can be awkward after all, this is a major favor to ask. So, before you drop the question, see if there are any signs that someone would be willing to mentor you. Is this person genuinely interested in you and your profession? Have you ever had conversations about work-related issues that resulted in actionable items for you? Has he or she shared professional expertise with you in a kind and supportive manner? When you ask for help, has your possible mentor been ready to patiently spend time with you to help you improve your skills? Is this person qualified/experienced enough to deal with your specific mentoring issues?
If that's the case, you've undoubtedly found someone who would be an excellent mentor. Your goal should be to build on the positive connections you've already had to establish a more structured learning relationship. And it all starts with you figuring out what your relationship's goals are, how you'll arrange your work together, and what you'll specifically want your mentor to do.
Identifying your mentoring goals and relationship
Do you want to get some advice on how to improve your communication style? Are you looking for advice on a possible promotion opportunity? What advice do you have for the next steps in your career? Do you need assistance honing your leadership skills?
You'll want to be specific about the reason for your mentoring request so that your possible mentor knows how he or she can help or even if he or she can help at all.
Are you intending to meet for coffee and discussion once a week, once a month, or on some other schedule to structure your work together? (Of course, this is contingent on your mentor's availability, but it's helpful to give a sense of what you were thinking.)
Are you searching for general advice on your main concerns, reading and/or resource recommendations, professional connections, suggested actions to take/practice, or some other sort of coaching?
Posing the mentoring question
You're ready to ask someone to mentor you if you've thought through these issues. Here's how you can do it:
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Make an appointment for a first meeting. Inquire with your possible mentor about scheduling a 15- to 30-minute meeting with you. You don't want to be rushed, and you want enough time for the other person to ask you questions about your ambitions, objectives, and so on.
Clearly state what kind of help you're looking for. This is when your prior brainstorming will come in handy in articulating exactly what you're thinking about.
Confirm your commitment to doing the required work and following through. There's nothing more annoying than mentoring someone who doesn't put in the effort required to benefit from advise, so make it obvious to your potential mentor that you're willing to put in the time, energy, and effort required to benefit from their advice (and time).
Recognize and value the time of the individual. Most people who are requested to be mentors are at the top of their professions, which means they are incredibly busy and in high demand. As a result, it's critical that you acknowledge that reality and express your gratitude for their consideration of your request. This is also a nice technique to give the other person an excuse to decline your offer by citing an overbooked schedule.
Susan, I've liked and learnt a lot from our previous chats, and I'd like to ask a favor of you based on my admiration for the way you've built your profession. I'm at a point in my career where I believe I may benefit from some mentoring in order to more effectively build my management skills in order to advance to a directorship position.
I was hoping we could meet for coffee every two weeks for roughly 90 minutes to share your advice on topics I should address. For each meeting, I would prepare a meeting agenda, develop a list of any follow-up items that arose from our conversations, execute the action items over the next two weeks, and report on my progress. I'll set aside at least five hours per week to follow up on the topics we discussed.
I understand that your schedule is extremely hectic, therefore I completely understand if you are unable to fit this type of commitment into your other activities. In any case, thank you for taking the time to consider my request, and I look forward to our occasional talks!
You've demonstrated that you've done the necessary groundwork by outlining goals, providing a framework, and promising to follow through on your talks with this request. This will give your potential mentor confidence that you'll make the most of his or her involvement in your professional achievement.
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Kim Dority is the founder and president of Dority & Associates, Inc., a content planning and development firm based in Colorado, and the author of Rethinking Information Work and the LIS Career Sourcebook (Libraries Unlimited, 2006 and 2012).
What should I ask a spiritual mentor?
The term “spiritual disciplines” may sound scary, but it simply refers to the spiritual habits we develop in order to connect with God. Prayer, reading the Bible, fasting, and giving money are all spiritual disciplines through which God meets each person individually. Inquiring into your mentor's unique ways of encountering God on a daily basis can provide you with encouragement as well as a larger understanding of how God operates in the world.
Spiritual Leadership and Knowledge Sharing Behaviors
Although this hypothesis has yet to be proven, Aydin and Ceylan (2009) found some support for the influence of spiritual leadership on information sharing behavior in a study. Organizational learning ability was found to be strongly positively linked with each of the spiritual leadership aspects in the study. Furthermore, the amount to which individuals acquire knowledge and share that knowledge are important aspects of an organization's learning ability. As a result, we came up with the following hypothesis:
Hypothesis 2: Spiritual leadership will be linked to followers' willingness to share their knowledge.
What is the difference between a spiritual father and a mentor?
The most important distinction between a mentor and a spiritual father is that a mentor, in general, leads the mentee through a specific stage of life. A spiritual father has a closer relationship with his “kid” and concentrates on spiritual enrichment and development throughout their lives.
Do I need a mentor?
A mentor can help you identify new methods to advance professionally. During times when difficult decisions must be made, a mentor can act as a sounding board. Mentors can assist you in expanding your professional network by introducing you to others. Mentors act as coaches, guiding you through periods of change and/or transition.
What do mentors do?
The expertise, advice, and resources that a mentor shares are determined by the mentoring relationship's format and aims. A mentor may share knowledge about his or her own career path with a mentee (or protege), as well as providing guidance, motivation, emotional support, and role modeling. A mentor can assist with career exploration, goal formulation, networking, and resource identification. The mentor's role may evolve as the mentee's needs change. Others are more informal. Some mentoring relationships are part of established programs with defined objectives and criteria.
Mentoring is a simple notion, but putting it into practice may be difficult. The American Psychological Association's handbook on handicap concerns cites “the competence and willingness to” as one of the elements of effective mentoring.
- Mentoring Youth in Transition is a project of the National Center for Secondary Education and Transition.
Should you ask someone to be your mentor?
You're ready to ask someone to mentor you once you've considered your options. This is how you do it.
Make an appointment for a first meeting. Inquire with your possible mentor whether he or she can meet with you for an hour. You don't want to be rushed, and you want enough time for the other person to ask you questions about your ambitions, objectives, and so on.
Clearly state what kind of help you're looking for (The Ask). This is when your prior brainstorming will come in handy in articulating exactly what you're thinking about. Describe what kind of advise or direction you're looking for and why. Is it to assist you in navigating the politics of your current department, or are you looking for a new job? Are you considering returning to school but are unsure what field of study to pursue? Consider this and be clear about what you're looking for.
If you're reaching out to someone you don't know, start with an introduction and any commonalities, specific interests, or points of discussion. Try to strike up a little conversation with him or her to pique his or her interest in meeting with you. We recommend that you first meet them for coffee or a quick meeting at their office to get to know one other. Set up 30 minutes for your first meeting.
In your initial email or first meeting, do not ask someone to be your mentor. Building trust and rapport takes time, just like any other relationship. Before asking them to be your mentor, you may need to meet with them a few times to get to know them and learn about their present career and ambitions.
Take a look at an example of how to contact someone you don't know (a referral, someone you have not spoken with or written to in the past).
Note: If you don't hear back from them, follow up, but don't pester them. After that, you should presume he or she doesn't have time to meet you right now. Check in two to three weeks after your initial contact. Now is the time to concentrate on the other two or more potential mentors on your list. Try to keep a relationship going (even if it's only one-way) by sending him or her notes or articles that might be of interest once every six months simply to check in.
What should I ask a spiritual person?
- What do you imagine occurs after we've lived here for a while? What do you believe it takes to get into heaven?
- What are your thoughts on the Bible? Have you ever taken the time to read it for yourself? What were your thoughts on what you read?