A mentor: a trusted counselor or guide, as defined by Merriam Webster Dictionary. I can think of countless people who fit this role in my life. My mom and dad, my grandma and grandpa, my sisters, my teachers, my coaches; I have so many mentors in life and I will always be in awe of how fortunate I am. All of these people have so many different qualities that make them as qualified as they are to help me and so many others in life.
As a high school girl, my concerns range from college and being an adult to whether or not I’m getting enough sleep and if I spend too much time on social media. With AP classes, clubs, sports, internships, and a social life, I constantly feel like I am being pulled in ten million directions. My mom reminds me that I’m doing the best I can. My dad reminds me that I am going to succeed, with or without a gazillion AP credits. My aunt Jennifer reminds me that I need to come first in my own life. My best friends always remind me how proud they are of me, and how proud I should be of myself.
A trusted counselor or guide is all of these things. Someone to remind you, yes you, are worth every single day, because in high school especially, you can feel reduced down to a sum of your GPA and classes and achievements instead of who you really are. A mentor is someone who sees the real you and helps you pursue the things you want most in life.
But the biggest, greatest, most amazing mentor in your life cannot do anything if you don’t choose to listen. If you don’t choose to change and grow and become everything that mentor hopes for you to become. I think our greatest mentors in life can sometimes be ourselves.
When I have a bad day, sometimes it’s hard to see the positive.Sometimes it’s hard to look back and see anything but awful. I mean, it’s a bad day, why remember it? But when I choose to be brave, to have compassion for myself in those hard life moments, to be the person my mentors and I know that I am and can be and look back on the negative times in my life, I often find strength and humility in my self. Because when you look back on mistakes and see the positive, see how you can move on, you are forgiving yourself, and allowing for growth and change.
Mentors, especially in high school, are impactful, they are insightful, and they are rooting for you. Thank your mentors. Thank them often for bringing out the best in you, and thank yourself for allowing that change to take place. And when the time comes, be READY to be a mentor yourself.