The need for Mentoring has never been greater than it is right now. Mentoring is a process meant to inspire and emotionally support others by providing guidance and sharing life and job experiences in an anxiety free environment. If done correctly we can help others to improve the quality and efficiency of their work and act as examples of how to comport oneself. Mentors can offer observations, support and suggestions that could encourage an individual to reevaluate their condition and strategies.

The Mentoring process is a fantastic opportunity for us to seriously evaluate how we can pass on these life experiences and lessons so that younger people will be able to benefit from our knowledge and experience. Passing on this information adds credibility as it validates our own experiences. In taking the time to help a young person in need, we are reaffirming that we have learned something important from life and we desire to pass that knowledge along so others can benefit from our wisdom, experiences, and even our own mistakes.

Good mentors need good communication and interpersonal skills. They should have a bit of humility but be proficient and accomplished in what they are teaching. Mentoring often comes from trust and begins with a good dialog. Because of their experience, mentors are capable of finding solutions to many problems. Some of the things mentors have learned have taken a lifetime to assimilate. By sharing these experiences we are imparting to others not only what is essential for us but things that can make life better and maybe easier for the next generation. Education and moral improvement is a process that happens and changes our lives every day. Therefore, it is our responsibility to observe and understand what is happening so that we may also grow, adapt and change with each day. Some things take a little time to learn. Taking the time and patience to teach a young struggling person, shows them that they are not alone as they make their way through life. In fact, mentoring can be a turning point in the development of a persons character. Our actions reveal our character. Through the actions of the mentor young people are shown that someone actually cares.

It has been said that the best teaching is done, not by telling a person what to think or what to see but by pointing to the right direction for them to move. It means that we inspire others to become curious about what we find important and this often occurs when we create the opportunity for an honest dialog. Inspiring curiosity is not easy. The Mentor must transmit their own enthusiasm of the material so that the individual becomes excited with what might be valuable. Much of our self­ esteem comes from what we do, that is why it is so important to recognize the honest effort of young people or coworkers and make appropriate positive comments inspiring them to do better, strive harder, and go further.

The best teaching also comes from personal example. An inspired individual watches how functions are done and then figures out how to duplicate the process. For the most part we learn by doing. Watching a skilled person do something is often easier than telling them what to do. To be effective as a mentor we need to know what we are teaching is being absorbed. What dictates our interest in any endeavor is we need to see both progress and improvement. Too often people try to rush through the learning process and forge ahead before they actually understand or have mastered any given skill. What they don't realize is that paying attention to the details in life allows us to learn more quickly. That is often why mistakes occur. People think they understand the process but they actually miss important details. Try to be patient in the learning process.

One of the most important aspects of this relationship is that the Mentor assumes some of the responsibility for the novice. That means not only in what skills are being taught but also for the safety and emotional well being of the individual.

"The way we change the world is by our personal example". People see who we are, what our moral values are, how we work and the time and skill that is involved in creating a desired effect. It is equally important to reflect positive values such as generosity, selflessness, compassion and courage for these will also become important aspects of our role model. It is important to make sure that whatever technique is being taught is done correctly. When it comes to workable skills, speed and efficiency come with time and practice. Repetition is the mother of perfection but it should be stressed that the technique must be perfect if one expects perfect results. Repeating poor techniques will not make a person better, so strive for doing things as accurately as possible. The more we do any function, the easier it becomes. Mentors serve as role models for future generations. That is why we should take this time­-honored process seriously, so we can have a very positive effect on the next generation of craftsman.

We should also be acutely aware of the fact that during this process we will also make mistakes. Even with a skilled craftsman or mentor, making mistakes is how we learn, as long as we recognize the error and correct it.

When we consider that our future is created by what we do each day, we should also understand that we not only owe the next generation the benefit of our experiences to help them improve their lives, but it is also our responsibility to pay forward by helping to share the lessons we have learned and chosen to define our lives. It is that craft that has given us a decent living, a sense of self­ esteem, along with a productive and rewarding life.