There are different interpretations of the words mentor and coach. Sometimes it seems the words are used when a more accurate word or phrase is, “aspire to,” “in awe of,” “greatly admire.” Mentors spend time with you – coaching. Coaches charge you for their mentoring – at least that’s the simplest way I can define the difference. I have a few people that fall inline with the more accurate phrases, “in awe of,” “greatly admire,” which is different for me than “aspire to.”

If I aspire to be like someone, I want to do it like them, achieve what they have – usually without understanding the work and sacrifice they gave to get to where they are.

Along with the phases of the moon, I go in and out who I am closely following, as well as how I feel about myself when I choose to really catch up with some of those that keep in me in awe. One in particular blows me away every time I catch up with her, yet her humility hides her… I’ll say it… greatness. Visiting her site, I feel like a hack. Visiting her site and reading her fluid posts and thoughts I feel shallow less deep, but not in a bad way. I’m not that great at pondering so deeply on those topics – shiny things still get in the way for me, yet I find myself hanging on her posts and learning from another perspective every time. I appreciate that about her. What would you call that? Some in Social Media lightly refer to those as “girl crushes.” That’s not it. That’s juvenile. It’s more of that hands-off-mentoring by being. There are several people in my life that fall into that category and fit different areas. When I follow them closely and listen, I improve and challenge myself to be a better human.

Who is on your list? Mine changes, but the core list seems to remain steady. That tells me I’ve selected them wisely.

Do you ever visit the site, blog, profiles, events of those you admire and walk away feeling:

  1. I want to have all of that and do all of that.
  2. That person is awesome in all that they do, and I relate to those services/skills they have.
  3. We are a lot alike or similar in the services we offer, but I don’t want to be just like that person, it’s not a fit.
  4. I could never be that fantastically successful.

Admittedly, I can feel all four of these at different times with the same person, really. Catch me on a good day, catch me on an off day.

TODAY’S list – not to suck up – but to call them out and let them know they affect others in a positive way – even quietly:

Linda Zimmer | Fr. Dave | David Amerland | Mari Anne Vanella | Jill Konrath | Dill Ward | Christine DeGraff | Peg Fitzpatrick | Aunt Carmen

One Comment
  1. Nixon Virtual Strategies February 21, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    It’s funny, Susan. As I read through this I laughed out loud because I’ve felt (and will continue to feel) just the same. I check out someone’s site or portfolio, all the while my tongue’s hanging out and I then follow them everywhere – Pinterest, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, the laundromat, the supermarket last Thursday in the vegetable aisle, the…oh, pardon me. Ha! But when someone is really good at what they do it can be so awesome to watch it and see what’s next, how the rest unfolds. The cool thing is that as I’ve gotten older, I’m glad I’m still able to be so impressed and inspired by the work and lives of others. Mind you that may be expressed as, “Oh get outta here! That is friggin’ amazing!!!” one day and, “Why do I even have a pulse?” the next. The very best of this is we don’t live in bubbles and I think whether we like it or not we do need to have the universe throw the greatness of others right smack in our faces to remind us to stay sharp, be as great as *we* can and to celebrate those who’ve honed their crafts to share with the rest of us.For today, and *only* today, I am hating Linda Zimmer. Don’t even click her name or visit her site – it will hurt your eyes like a thousand suns. That’s a compliment…

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