Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, January 31, 2006


This morning as I was driving in I was listening to "Bob and Sheri" and the conversation turned rather profound in that it talked about the wonders of mentorship, and how those who most desperately need a mentor are usually the same people who don't want one. One of the regulars chimed in that the path to success is usually pretty boring, whereas the road to failure is usually full of excitement, and that's one reason that you have people who have fallen flat on their face, you offer them everything they need (usually simple, basic ideas they fail to grasp), and they simply don't want to do the work involved and usually go and flail about on their own anyway. I think part of that has to do with the fact that it's a fairly mature thing to want to work at being succcessful, to do the things longterm that you need to do, rather than wanting instant gratification, so those who would most appreciate a mentor probably don't really need them in the long run. The rest of us, however, are another story.

I was blessed with a mentor for years, and I don't mean in terms of business or finance or one aspect of my life, but in all areas of my life, someone who found me flat on my face trapped in a prison of my own making, who lifted me out and then tried to impart wisdom with mixed success. In the long run, I made progress, but I fought every step of the way, and never made the progress he hoped for. Finally after years of frustration on both parts and in a fit of honesty I admitted that I hadn't wanted to listen in the first place--and thereby lost my mentor.

Only now do I really appreciate what I had. I chafed under his authority like a teenager at the time. I regret that loss. I didn't really deserve what I received. But the thing is, over the years, even though I was braced against it, some part of me listened, and now I'm slowly incorporating some of that wisdom into my life. Maybe it had to come down to that. But I wish now that I had been more appreciative at the time. So just in case I never said it clearly, let me just say 'thank you' for all those years of struggle. I really do think in the end it will be worth it. And now, finally, I do appreciate what I had. I'm just sorry I didn't sooner.

No comments: