Hi Team,

Last week I brought you all up to speed about my new mentoring gig, and I must admit that so far, I'm loving it. Although, it's a lot more preparation work than I envisaged (or maybe that just me?). Now that I've been doing mentoring for a few months I have had some time to reflect on why I am doing all this extra work and "my why" has been quite revealing.

Don't worry I'm not going to launch into a monologue about a "midlife crisis", although turning 60 a month ago has induced several "stop and think moments" and has contributed in some part towards jumping into the mentoring space. The honest answer to why I was drawn towards mentoring other builders has a lot to do with personal validation. Running a residential building company is really tough and keeping it profitable long term is even tougher. Added to this the building industry has some significant problems like personal legal exposure, outrageous insurance requirements and a never-ending list of bureaucratic regulations. Having successfully run DDB for 32 years, I don't really know how I have managed juggling all these balls for so long? So, for me mentoring other builders is a productive way to unpack the circus act and help me to finally overcome an undercurrent of personal doubt. I also feel that all the personal and professional development I have been doing for the last 6 or 7 years (including writing 165 weekly emails) has led me towards mentoring and coaching and to not give it a go would be a personal travesty.

"The best person to learn from is the person that is one step ahead of you." Unknown

A book written by Carol Dweck titled "Mindset: The New Psychology of Success" has opened my eyes to the importance of a "growth mindset" and the central role it plays in learning and personal development. Dweck explains that much of what we think we understand of our personality comes from our mindset. Your intelligence and personality are something you can work on and develop as opposed to something that is a fixed deep-seated trait. Dweck’s research firmly supports the premise that undertaking mentoring or coaching programs not only opens your mind to new concepts and opportunities it also expands your knowledge and self-confidence in your chosen field. 

"People don't resist change - they resist being changed." Conor Neill

The difference between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset.

How you view yourself (your mindset) is the key to your growth and your ultimate success. If you believe that your mindset is fixed you will prove yourself correct over and over rather than learning from your mistakes and changing your attitude and your behaviour. So, a growth mindset is recognizing the value of challenging yourself and learning and growing through your own efforts. A fixed mindset is avoiding the work by believing it isn't worth the effort.

"As you begin to understand the fixed and growth mindsets, you will see exactly how one thing leads to another— how a belief that your qualities are carved in stone leads to a host of thoughts and actions, and how a belief that your qualities can be cultivated leads to a host of different thoughts and actions, taking you down an entirely different road." Carol Dweck

Embarking on a mentoring journey seems like a great way to feed and enhance a growth mindset.

Thanks for reading,
Stay safe and embrace change.

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