The Importance of Mentors: Learn to Accumulate Their Skills in Less Time

Life is too short, and it is very challenging for us to learn everything on our own. All the great masters in history had mentors who guided them, carefully evaluated their work, and let them know in which areas they needed further improvements. The path to mastering gets easier and more enjoyable once we know our weaknesses and strengths and the direction to follow. People who did not have mentors did study and explore but they were not able to make a name for themselves since they did not which way they should go and how could they improve themselves. We need mentors to show us the right path so that our precious time does not get wasted in useless pursuit which just wastes our time and kills our spirits. When you are sure, now you can stay as a dependent person and work on your own, and compete with your mentor, you can let yourself from his chains, and thrive ahead.

“Life is short, and your time for learning and creativity is limited. Without any guidance, you can waste valuable years trying to gain knowledge and practice from various sources. Instead, you must follow the example set by Masters throughout the ages and find the proper mentor. The mentor-protégé relationship is the most efficient and productive form of learning. The right mentors know where to focus your attention and how to challenge you. Their knowledge and experience become yours. They provide immediate and realistic feedback on your work, so you can improve more rapidly. Through an intense person-to-person interaction, you absorb a way of thinking that contains great power and can be adapted to your individual spirit. Choose the mentor who best fits your needs and connects to your Life’s Task. Once you have internalized their knowledge, you must move on and never remain in their shadow. Your goal is always to surpass your mentors in mastery and brilliance.”

Learning requires a sense of humility:

When we learn something new, we feel that we have mastered everything, and now we do not need anyone. We feel superior over others, and become self-absorbed. We go back to when we are not masters in our fields yet and think we are. We drag ourselves back into the competitive world and let others surpass us since they have mentors who help us, and they are keen on exploring and getting the most out of their mentors. We need to be as curious as children to learn more and should be dependent on our mentors till we are sure that we can work on our own and take the course of the research ahead. Learning requires humbleness; it requires the mind of a child; it requires the acceptance of knowledge of those who have studied our fields deeper than us. As long as we are ignorant and do not accept our mentors as someone who knows a lot more than us, we would not be able to learn effectively. To use your mentor to the utmost degree, spend much time with him, and unearth how he excelled in your field. Once you know the path and the secrets, you can continue on your own.

“To learn requires a sense of humility. We must admit that there are people out there who know our field much more deeply than we do. Their superiority is not a function of natural talent or privilege, but rather of time and experience. Their authority in the field is not based on politics or trickery.”

Practical knowledge:

When you enter Apprenticeship Phase, you lack practical knowledge, make mistakes, and get stuck and frustrated. You need mentors to guide you to overcome your mistakes and show you the right path that best suits your skills and capabilities. Most people depend on theory, and when they face practical life, they do not seek people’s help, and it takes them years to clear their path of themselves. You should remember: with the help of your mentor if you can solve the problem in one week, why you should waste one whole year on it; not seeking his help? To expand your practical knowledge and productivity, you should find the right mentors for you who would help you save your energy and time.

“The reason you require a mentor is simple: Life is short; you have only so much time and so much energy to expend. Your most creative years are generally in your late twenties and on into your forties. You can learn what you need through books, your own practice, and occasional advice from others, but the process is hit-and-miss. The information in books is not tailored to your circumstances and individuality; it tends to be somewhat abstract. When you are young and have less experience of the world, this abstract knowledge is hard to put into practice. You can learn from your experiences, but it can often take years to fully understand the meaning of what has happened. It is always possible to practice on your own, but you will not receive enough focused feedback. You can often gain a self-directed apprenticeship in many fields, but this could take ten years, maybe more.”

Mentors do not give you a shortcut:

The essence of staying with a mentor is that he does not divert you to shortcuts and easy paths which destroy the future, but rather takes you through the process of mastery since he himself had spent quality time with his mentors and learned a lot from them. Mentors not just equip you with knowledge and skills that they have acquired, but also show you hidden paths that they themselves have not explored.

“Mentors do not give you a shortcut, but they streamline the process. They invariably had their own great mentors, giving them a richer and deeper knowledge of their field.”

The intensity of focus:

Mentors help you focus on one thing at a time and limit the distractions that enhance the quality of your work and save you a lot of time. Mentors know the value of time and the importance of time, and they want you to be focused to explore more in less time.

“There is more to this than just time saved. When we learn something in a concentrated manner it has added value. We experience fewer distractions. What we learn is internalized more deeply because of the intensity of our focus and practice. Our own ideas and development flourish more naturally in this shortened time frame. Having an efficient apprenticeship, we can make the most of our youthful energy and our creative potential.”

Emotional bond:

Once you connect an emotional bond with your mentor, he will trust you and devote you more time. He will see his youth in you and will share knowledge that he has not shared with anyone. Emotional bond helps you achieve more in less time since your mentor will take you and your work seriously.

“When you admire people, you become more susceptible to absorbing and imitating everything they do. You pay deeper attention. Your mirror neurons are more engaged, allowing for learning that involves more than the superficial transmission of knowledge, but also includes a style and way of thinking that is often powerful. On the other side, because of the emotional bond, mentors will tend to divulge more of their secrets than they would to others. You must not be afraid of this emotional component of the relationship. It is precisely what makes you learn more deeply and efficiently.”


It is unwise to waste our time in fields that we have less knowledge of, and we keep digging and digging wasting the limited time of our precious youth. We need mentors to guide us from time to time and show us hidden paths in our fields and reveal to us our weaknesses and strengths. What we cover in ten years on our own, we cover in four years with the help of a mentor.


  1. Greene, R. (2013). Mastery. Penguin.

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