On this edition of “Keeping It Real,” a recurring podcast series on Inman, Peter Lorimer gives his top tips for finding an exceptional mentor and surrounding yourself with knowledge. 

If you ever find yourself feeling stuck in your career — as if you’re running against something that just will not budge — I want to urge you to do something. Do a quick inventory of the people you spend time with. 

How many of them have achieved what you hope to achieve? 

 

Mentorship is a powerful component of success. Much of what you will achieve in your life has a lot to do with whose footsteps you’re following. You’ll cover what you create with your own fingerprints and create something unique, but there’s so much power in finding people who have gone before you.

To get started, cast off the naysayers and those who play it close to the chest. A true mentor is someone who will give it all away and breathe positivity and constructive criticism into your life.

Finding a trusted mentor is a struggle in and of itself, but it’s definitely worth it. I have four tips that will help you surround yourself with trusted advisers and people smarter than you.

  1. Once a week, ask one person out for coffee. It can be a 20-minute coffee at your desk or a two-hour long coffee at the hip cafe down the street. Start with what you can, however you can. (Oh, and while we’re getting started, kick out the fear that people won’t want to spend time with you. People love talking about what they love doing.)
  2. Once a month, take someone to lunch. Build up a steady stream of these monthly lunches. You’ll learn more here in one hour than you would in reading 10 books, not that you shouldn’t be reading.
  3. Make sure these are people are free with their knowledge. Knowledge is never owned, it’s borrowed.
  4. There are loads of mentors out there who are cranking out valuable content on the internet. If you have a commute to work, you have time for a daily mentoring session. Scour the library, internet and bookstore for content you can consume that will push you along in your career.

Finally, let’s switch this around a bit. It’s our duty to pass along knowledge. If you’re asked to mentor someone else, I urge you to find time in your schedule to do that. To take part in this big beautiful, delicious life, we have to help others.

If you’re getting hungry for knowledge, check out this podcast where I cover mentorship and how to find it in real life and digitally.

Peter Lorimer is the CEO of Beverly Hills, California-based PLG Estates.

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