What I Know Now – 20-Somethings Ask

light-fashion-hands-woman-mediumHappy Wednesday! Today I have some answers to 20-something questions. One last answer on the question about how to manage being busy . Ever since this NY Times article it has been on my mind a lot! Then some advice on mentorship – how to give and get!

Does “being busy: get you anywhere? 

Screen Shot 2013-06-25 at 7.49.23 AM copyHi. My question has to do with being busy. I feel like I am constantly trying to prove myself and need to be doing so many things to get ahead or just keep up with all the people that seem to be achieving so many things around me. Did you ever feel this way? Did it go away? How do you manage trying to keep moving vs. just treading water by doing too much?

 A1. Prioritizing what’s truly important to you is a life long process.  I don’t think this is something static because different goals become more important at different times of your life.  Give yourself the time and space to re-evaluate what is truly important to you as an individual so you can visualize longer term goals. Oh–and If you’re someone who is easily influenced or derailed by the success of your peers– then limit your time on social media! It’s a time suck and often people just post stuff to try to inspire envy! – Consultant, Research, NYC

How can I get a mentor? 

Screen Shot 2013-06-25 at 7.49.23 AM copyI am just starting my career and hear a lot of advice about getting a mentor. What was the benefit to you of having a mentor? Did you have a mentor and did you find it valuable? What is the best way to get a mentor?  What can I do to be of value to my mentor? Thanks.

A1. It’s really helpful to have a mentor at any age, not just when you’re starting your career. But finding someone who you respect and who has time to give you guidance and advice takes time and effort. If you aim to get a mentor to check the box on what you’re “supposed” to do at your age it won’t work out for either of you. It’s best to just keep it in mind and seek one out when you really feel like you need help. That way it should happen more naturally and will end being a lasting relationship. And remember, mentors come in all ages–they don’t have to be a certain number of years older.  VP, Project Management

 A2. It has been my experience that these relationships evolve organically–and it is a fluid relationship–not contractual.  It’s also important to remember that you–as the next generation with a whole new set of skills– are already of value to this mentoring person.  Sharing wisdom and valuable experience is one of the few benefits that come with age–and most people with healthy sense of self enjoy being valued for where they’ve been and what they know! – Consultant, Research, NYC

Tune in next time for more advice on mentorship! I gave a talk the other week for Lady Project NYC on how to be a mentor and get mentored. Will share some of the insights in the next post!


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