I have many mentors

I have four mentors.

I have a loose definition of the word “mentor”. They aren’t people who I can call at any moment, but some of them are. In fact, two of them have no clue who I am. But they’re all my mentors because I can predict how they’d respond to my questions, I’ve chatted with them enough or I’ve read enough of their writing.

I didn’t call them my mentors until recently. It feels especially weird to call someone your mentor when you’ve never met them. That was until I read a blog post by Derek Sivers where he talks about his mentors, and they look similar to the people I have in my life. I realized, those four people are my mentors. And this idea has been liberating. I don’t have to be in the same place, at the same time, with that perfect person, to eventually have a “mentor”. I’ve seen enough of what my mentors have to say that I find myself quoting them, to other people, and to myself. They’re always there for me, I only need to ask.