Group Resources’ That Makes Two of Us book on “Lifestyle Mentoring for Women” gives the Ten Commandments of mentoring:
1) You must be Authentic – Be what and who you are. Don’t fake it, they’ll see right through it and letting your faults be seen will make you more real.
2) Listen and Learn – You won’t always have the answers, and that’s ok. Just be a listening ear and know when to seek the appropriate help if needed.
3) Maintain Confidentiality – Trust in a friendship is everything. Don’t violate that, you might not get it back. If you feel you must share something between you two, ask your mentee if you can ask your mentor or friend for advice.
4) Ask the Right Questions – Don’t ask yes or no questions, ask questions that require explanation. People enjoy talking about themselves, get the right conversation door open and let them talk and dig in and ask the right questions – without sounding nosey, be genuine.
5) Follow up and Follow Through – Again, be real. If you say you’re praying for her – do it! Find ways to remind yourself, calendar notifications, text yourself, notes on the mirror, whatever it takes. If you say, “let’s get together soon!” mean it and do it! Don’t be another flake in their lives.
6) Encouragement is Key – “Don’t judge her. love her. You can disapprove of what she does without disapproving her. So love her through it all…good and bad.”
7) Pick Your Battles – By being genuine, following up, listening and knowing her; you’ve invested in her life. You have earned the right to speak into her life. Pick your battles, know when it’s worth risking things for.
8) Look for the God Moments – If you’re living life together you’ll laugh, cry, shop, and study together. Know when you testify and acknowledge God. When you screw up in front of her acknowledge it and talk about it.
9) Be the Initiator – Watch for who God puts in your path, don’t wait for someone to come to you, take them under your wing, approach them. Isaiah 38:19 “Only the living can praise you as I do today. Each generation tells of your faithfulness to the next.”
10) Keep Your Own Walk Fresh – Have your own quiet time, be in a Bible Study. Your mentee will mentor you but make sure you are also being mentored or lead by the generation before you.
You don’t need a bunch of tools to enter into a mentorship, but they can certainly help! You just need to practice these commandments and be genuine, loving and make time.
You can find copies of That Makes Two of Us as low as $1.50!