There are grumpy days and there are happy days. Mentors get to see both. Sometimes just spending an hour of one-on-one time with a child is enough to change a grumpy day into a happy day. Sometimes it's not. When kids seem indifferent or even ‘mean’, ask them what is going on. They might not know what they are doing or they might be testing you to see if you are going to give up on them too. Some kids actually think mentors are paid for being their friend. It makes a big impact when they find out you are showing up and spending time with them because you care about them and believe in them— in spite of any hang-ups they might have. Talk to them about your volunteering. They need to know why you do what you do. Remember, mentors are usually the last person to know they are making a difference.
Speaking of making a difference, January is National Mentoring Month and it’s a great chance to reflect on mentors in your own life. Who made an impact in your life? Who nudged you in the right direction? Who was it that showed up, listened, loved, and cared for you? Who took the time to build a healthy relationship with you? Who shared what they knew and allowed you to grow? Have you thanked him or her? Today would be a great day to make a call or drop someone a note letting them know they impacted your life. Once again, remember, mentors are usually the last person to know they are making a difference. Happy Mentoring Month!
Thank you for making a difference. We couldn't pay you...to care this much.