an experienced and trusted adviser. Definitions from Oxford Languages
From the very definition of what it means to be a Mentor, it sounds simple enough. Knowing this, I started to question who and what has had the biggest impact over the span of my career and why.
I also find myself thinking about people along the way I have been fortunate to have Mentored or inspired as well.
There really is nothing more fulfilling than a person telling you something you have shared or done has had a positive impact or has shaped their views and goals in life.
I have been blessed (with some determination and hard work) to assist and train under some of our industries most accomplished individuals.
From a technical aspect I learned a lot. However, with some reflection my biggest take away and what I feel allowed me to really grow was a common thread from some of my favorite Mentors.
It would seem the truly great stylists, the ones I considered Icons and would feel like I was in the company of greatness to the point where I would be excited, nervous and intimidated all at once could put you at ease and inspire you with just a few words - allowing you to focus on what you are there for - to learn and develop your craft
A Mentor without ego and with a great deal of humility has the appreciation to be able to share their wisdom without any agenda other than to inspire you to be a better version of yourself. This presence of humble wisdom is when you know you are in the company of true greatness.
Many years later, some of my Mentors are still out there creating and inspiring. Some have retired. A few, which brings me sorrow, have passed leaving a great legacy behind.
I can only hope that I have the ability and the grace to continue sharing and inspire other people not just in my profession but as a human being in the same manner in which I was treated.
Thank you to those who left big shoes behind to fill for the challenge.