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Christian and Socially-Conscious…One Woman's Expression

Archive for the tag “mentoring”

A Generation’s Responsibility

In my profession, it is not uncommon for me to know someone whose parent is an attorney or a judge.  This may be the same for you, or maybe you know of  similar situations.  Do you know someone in the military whose mother or father was in the military?  Maybe you know someone who is a teacher whose parent taught; or maybe a police officer whose parent was also; or a pastor, or a doctor, or a business owner?  Surely, you can name an entertainer whose child is an entertainer.  Many times children follow in the footsteps of their parents, good or otherwise.

For a long time, I looked at this passing of the baton from the standpoint of struggle.  This made sense for someone like me.  You see, I could easily see the number of obstacles in place to halt me as I pursued dreams not of my family’s business.  I did not have a relative (or family friend) introducing me to this person and to that person for professional advancement.  I had limited opportunities to overhear conversations for avoiding certain workplace pitfalls.  They were limited because you can only be proactive when you are aware of the potential hindrance.  As you know, life can be challenging.  Now, add the additional component of discovering the ropes without a tangible roadmap.  There are real trials and frustrations when you are the first to….do…..anything.  With no mentor, how can you not see struggle?  How could I not see it?

This morning, however, my viewpoint expanded.  As I was sliding on my business jacket, a series of images came to mind: businesses, land, and sacrifice.  I began to think about my ancestors and about the property they owned, the structures they built, the obstacles they overcame to make life better for those of us who have come afterwards.  Driving to work, I thought about the times in which they lived.  My thoughts grew to include the ancestors of others.  I began to think in general terms.  I wondered if our ancestors would weep or rejoice.  It was then that I understood, on a deeper level, that every generation has a responsibility.

Before this morning, I thought that every person has a responsibility to make things better for the next generation.  This is true, but it is finite.  Better, after all, is subjective to an individual’s moral and ethical beliefs.  It is also confined to one’s ration for another.  Now, I am aware that this responsibility is bigger than one person if we truly want to leave a viable legacy for those in succession.

Who wants the best of the best; the cream of the crop; the pick of the litter?

I DO!  I want it for me and for you.

“But how can we both have it,” I heard someone ask.

How can we both not?

Expand your mind to grasp the notion that we are all living at this time.  We are a generation, living.  Epidemics kill because we are connected.  Blessing multiply because we are connected.

Individually, we are each a part of a larger whole.  Our responsibility as individuals, as with our ancestors, is now and will be bigger than our sole selves.  Our ancestors understood this, many giving their lives for this truth.  Many cultures understand this, many passing down belief systems that emphasize its importance.  So here, today, I wonder……how many of us get it.

Mother-Daughter

Mentor Her

Where are the women who are interested in mentoring women? I really want to know. Are we hidden behind family obligations or our ambitions? Sure, I can join an organization and get an assigned mentor. That is always an option, I guess. I can pay yearly dues and hope there is someone available who is willing and able to help me reach my potential without feeling intimidated or threatened by my development. I can hope that my tendency to ask question after question does not tire my teacher. I can hope that my unique personality and analytical expressions would be accepted and appreciated. Yes…I could join an organization, pay my dues and hope, but is that my only realistic option?

Mentor Needed

A few days ago I had an all-too-real conversation with a friend in which we pondered this very thing. Over the years, I have had a number of these kinds of conversations with various people. Mostly we talk about it from a professional standpoint, but not always. The older we become, the more areas of life we add. (Funny how that happens.)

It is no secret that the good ol’ boy network has been around for a long time. We see the advantages of its intricate operation and wonder…do we have that type of collective mindset, that kind of organized application, in the professional arena? When we are in decision-making positions, are we looking to advance the careers of our sisters? Are we sharing information amongst our gender about promotional job opportunities, business contacts, and networking events that would help us reach higher and reach back farther? In life, do we look to uplift one another, to help each other accomplish goals? If not, why not? We should.

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