13 advices from my mentor (and my friend)

What does the word mentor mean? — Mentor means A wise and trusted guide and advisor. I know this word only(and its meaning) after working 3 years in the industry.

I have had some in-person mentors in my life. Out of them, one gave the best advice I have ever got. And when I started following (some of those advises), it unwinds a new possibility within me. I would like to share those advises here.

So I was doing a project, which I think I got miserably failed. Things were out of control and It was very difficult to cope up with things. Racing thoughts and worries kept me busy and draining all my energy. I was physically a bit sick, kept getting headaches. I felt horrible and fearful, then I went to meet this guy (my mentor and my friend).

It was not a planned meeting. I was on a business trip. I stayed in a hotel, it was around 9 PM. Due to a long journey I was feeling tired and want to sleep. I told my hotel room mate that I am going to meet my friend (but I was a little bit hesitant of travelling 10–20 kms from the hotel). Then something within me told that I had to meet him so I started to his home.

My mentor stayed in a place where I used to live in. I moved out from there around 2 years back. I just called him and told him I was on the way. I think that this will take at least 45–60 minutes to reach the destination, but to my surprise I reached there in 30 minutes! Since I used to live there some memories started creeping in. The place does not change much, but I had fun (a lots of fun!) living in that place. I had to move out since I got job in another city (but I always loved that place).

It was around 10 PM, I reached my mentor’s home, I was so happy seeing him after a long time. We talked for sometime, I was very curious about listening to his life journey (well, he is an entrepreneur). After he finished talking, I explained my situation about the project and then things that I was going through.

He is pretty intelligent. He understood everything very quickly also he was predicting what was happened. I got to say this, I was pretty impressed. He also know the subtleties and gave me some advice, which were pretty helpful.

Well here is the list

1. Don’t overreact to failure — Things will fail and expect things to fail so that you can mitigate the risks. We were taught in our school that we should get good marks, earn a good name with parents, teachers, and with fellow students. Always get over 90 or 95%. Life is so different that, in the real life you will learn more if you try and fail. View your past failures as learning and use those learning for your next adventure.

2. Bounce back from failure — Be a person who bounce back from failure. Never give up. If you try and you failed. Try again. Failed again? try again, again and again till you succeed. Always know why you have failed and don’t repeat the mistakes.

3. Solution spontaneity — If things did not work out or if you face a lot of problems. Don’t get stuck in your mind. Look for solutions immediately. If you got a problem, immediately ask yourself what is the solution, what you can do, what are your next action items. Don’t freeze yourself.

4. Get out of victim mindset and don’t dwell on the problems — this is very important. put yourself in the lead and ask how am I going to solve this. Look for solutions and take action immediately. This will help you to come out of victim mindset and to have leader’s mindset.

5. Do your practice and expand your limits — Go for a run, take push-ups. Do something physically. My mentor used to tell me that I looked great when I was doing yoga and followed the spiritual practice. If you push yourself physically, it will expand and you will do the same things in all other areas of your life.

6. Establish a balance physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually — My mentor noticed that I am off balance mentally, emotionally (This doesn’t mean I am insane) and told me to follow the practices, make sure that you are balanced in physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. This will bring clarity into your life. You will be able to think clearly. Here is one of the ways that you can establish a balance.

7. Refuel yourself — find time to refuel yourself. If you don’t stop and refuel yourself, you will get burned out. Stop and enjoy things the way it is and get back to work in order to express your full potential.

8. Everybody struggles — If you think people other than you live a peaceful and great life, please don’t. Everybody has their own problems and challenges in their life. It is up-to them how they are handling it. If you handle yours properly and diligently you will have an awesome life.

9. Strive for excellence, not for perfection — Only do things which are necessary. All of the people cannot get it right at the first time, may be some can. There is always v1,v2,v3.. versions.

10. Have a vision for yourself. — have a 1 year, 3 year, 5 year, 10 year goals. This is hard, but you need to do it. Take time let you figure it out in an organic fashion. You will not wake up one day and say Oh I want to be a piano musician.

11. Min input and max output — Always focus on the effective and efficient way of doing things in order to get maximum output and providing maximum value. This will come through your own experience and learning from others.

12. Write a Journal on a daily basis — this will help you to learn about yourself and to think clearly. keep a journal everywhere, at your home, workplace etc.

13. Keep a good book everywhere and Read a lot — you cannot learn everything from your experience,you need to learn what other people went through. Books can help you with this, it will give a good insight and you can learn other’s life in a week or so. Also it will give you good mentors.

I wrote down these advises that he gave me and it was already 1 AM, but I was not feeling tired and ready to take on challenges.

It has been 3 months since i have had this advice. So far

  1. I have read around 8 books (and got some pretty good mentors as well),
  2. completed and launched the project successfully,
  3. Regained my physical health,
  4. Knew my short team goals and what i have to do to achieve them
  5. working on setting up my vision.

If you already knew these things, I would say you are awesome and keep rocking. If you don’t know, then I think this blog post will help you. I am thankful for my mentor for giving these advises.