Creating Emotionally Healthy Mentees

As we companion with people in the mentoring journey, it becomes vital that we guide people in all areas of their lives.

Previously we’ve considered the importance of our mentees having a healthy balanced life in their physical, social, financial, mental, spiritual and we began on their emotional lives.

Today, some key ingredients for creating emotional health in our mentees.

First, the problem. Many people have been suffering from trauma through restrictions, isolation, health and economic impact due to Covid. As we meet with people, now more than any other time, we need to be aware of their emotional needs. Emotional depletion leads to potential for burnout, distraction from ministry pathways, marriage and family disruption. It can affect all areas of our lives.

So, if that’s the problem, what’s the solution as mentors? Continue reading “Creating Emotionally Healthy Mentees”

Reflecting on Perspectives

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Saviour.  The Sovereign Lord is my strength; (Habakkuk 3:17-19a)

I was reminded of this text recently by a friend who was clinging to God’s faithfulness in the midst of a really tough situation. And I had to think, what a classic example Habakkuk gives here of the importance of a right perspective. Not allowing the circumstances, as challenging as they were, dictate his outlook. Not denying the harsh reality immediately before him, nor allowing it to discredit the ultimate reality that he knew to be true – that God is good and faithful. And he allows this perspective to determine his actions – he chooses to rejoice.

We explored this theme of Perspectives for ACMN’s twelfth annual training webinar in early August this year. It was an online event due to ongoing Covid restrictions, and we had participants join us from all around Australia, and even a few international guests!  Our seven presenters were all members of the ACMN Committee, and they brought us a smorgasbord of ideas and insights.

Continue reading “Reflecting on Perspectives”

Ms Represented and the Fatherhood of God

Women, anger and the Fatherhood of God

Have you watched Ms Represented[1] on the ABC?  It’s a documentary series on the history of women in politics in Australia and I would highly recommend it to both men and women.  It made me rejoice as I thanked God for the people who fought hard so that I can vote.  It also made me furious at the misogyny that women in the house of representatives still live with.  You will be aware of the recent avalanche of stories about gendered sexual violence. Christian Porter, Brittany Higgins and Grace Tame are just a few of the names making headlines in this area as perpetrators are being called to account.  Yet there is another, related narrative, that it is men who are under attack.  The criticism of ‘toxic masculinity’ has been perceived in some circles as a judgement that all masculinity is toxic.  How do we speak about a God who reveals himself as Father through the Son when these masculine terms themselves are cause for suspicion by some? 

Continue reading “Ms Represented and the Fatherhood of God”

Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis

Kurt Lewin (1890-1947) is known as the father of social psychology. His thinking gave rise to so many processes we take for granted today such as action research, change process theory and sensitivity training. He coined the term ‘group dynamics’, did ground-breaking work in analysing organisational culture and gave us the psychological equation B = ƒ(P, E), meaning that human behaviour is a function of the person in their environment. That seems obvious now, but it took Lewin to make it clear.

Perhaps the most useful thing Lewin came up with for mentoring is his ‘Force Field Analysis’, a tool that I use all the time in mentoring sessions in an informal, unstructured way and occasionally as a formal exercise. The FFA provides a framework for identifying the factors that influence a situation:

    • factors that drive movement toward a goal – ‘helping forces’
    • factors that block movement toward a goal – ‘hindering forces’

Continue reading “Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis”

‘Mentorability’: What makes a ‘good’ mentoree?

By Tim with help from ACMN members on our April 2021 Member Networking Zoom

My training was largely around the concepts, skills, resources, and practices that would enable me to become an effective mentor.  I was also being mentored and there was comparatively little reflection on what might enable me to be a ‘good’ mentoree. 

This would all make good sense if 90% of the effectiveness of mentoring was wrapped up in the role of the mentor.  However, after mentoring now for over 20 years, I am very aware that this is not the case.  In the most productive relationships I have been involved in, both mentor and mentoree bring different but equally significant elements to the relationship.  Mentoring becomes a genuine partnership in which both mentor and mentoree have complementary roles to play. 

Continue reading “‘Mentorability’: What makes a ‘good’ mentoree?”

Keys for mentoring 🔑🔑🔑

All of us need someone to walk alongside us. We need to be loved and to love. We need to understand and to be understood. Whether old or young, women or men, from Asia, Africa, Europe, US, Australia or NZ, wealthy or without earthly riches, follower of Jesus, Buddha, Islam or atheist, liberal, Pentecostal, progressive, conservative or evangelical, pastor, large, medium or small church, denominational leader or business leader, we all need mentors. I’ve seen this for over 20 years. I’ve had the privilege to walk alongside people with all these backgrounds. And I’ve seen 6 keys that are able to unlock and guide people’s journeys. When using these 6 keys to specific areas, mentoring people is transformative.

Continue reading “Keys for mentoring 🔑🔑🔑”

Applying Theory

By Rick Lewis

One thing we are never short of in today’s world is information. Yet although many of us suffer from information overload our appetite for more and more content seems insatiable. It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of consuming endless information without it doing us any good.

Mentoring can contribute something tremendously valuable here. Conversations with a mentor are an opportunity to do a mental stocktake and ask questions like

    • What information, theories and ideas have we got in our heads?
    • What’s it worth?
    • What are we going to do with it?

Continue reading “Applying Theory”