For the last 18 months I've had the pleasure of mentoring Natalie. I help lots of Trainers and have guided them and its a big deal to be the person that Colleagues come to for help, advice and guidance.
Mentoring is a huge responsibility. It takes time, patience, effort, respect, boundaries and most importantly the ability to teach.
Mentoring is much like Dog Training. When we purchase or adopt a Dog we are agreeing to an unwritten contract in that we will nurture this life, keep them safe, build trust and teach them (obviously love for Dogs too, its weird to tell colleagues you love them 😂).
When mentoring someone it's not about ego or you know better. Mentoring is guiding someone and helping them to learn and to nurture them. It's helping them to do better, learn from your own mistakes and share knowledge and information.
To be there to help them with their own cases and to guide them. To teach them how to train and work with people and their Dogs.
Natalie has come so far on her journey already and much like Training a Dog I've been there for her during her fears, doubts, tears, joy, excitement and frustrations.
I came into Natalie's life when she was lost and she couldn't see her way through to a clearing much like working with Dog owners.
Natalie has come so far and she's not just made progress but she's jumped hurdle after hurdle and she's getting to where she wants to be. We have another tough two years ahead as she embarks on the next part of her journey but I'll be there with her every step of the way.
The best thing about mentoring Natalie is her confidence has boomed, she had so many doubts and fears and she's awesome.
When we work with Dogs and their owners it's just like working with a colleague we want to see them succeed.
So much like mentoring we have to be a teacher to our Dogs, we have to teach them and show them how to do tasks, we have to help them to where they want to be.
For a Dog this could be meeting their genetic needs, solving their Reactivity or Separation Anxiety, teaching them the environment isn't so scary.
Dog Training and people training isn't about ego, it's about supporting the Dog and the people to be where they need to be. It's not about bragging and outdoing others, your journey with your own Dog is yours don't covet someone else's training with their Dog, focus on your Dog.
The same way I'm only talking about Natalie and not others I help, because it's not about ego or pointing out who I help it's about using this scenario as an example of how to teach and our responsibilities.
This is also about Natalie as I want to congratulate her on her recent accomplishments, of her Approved Dog Trainer Status with Into Dogs and ICAN which I know was terrifying for her. But she's done it as I knew she would. To congratulate her on her approved Dog Trainer status with Dog Training College and her Level 5! Her recent accomplishments with her own Dogs which I won't share as I feel that's Natalie's personal information.
Training people and Dogs isn't about ego it's about lifting others up be it a person or Dog and being in there corner.
In our community group we congratulate people on their accomplishments too. We don't need to but it's a nice thing to do to show that person recognition of what they have achieved. It costs nothing to be kind and make someone feel good. When you big up your Dog they feel good too!
Remember don't care about what someone else is doing be it owner or Colleague or competitor stay in your own lane. Make waves in your own lane. Enjoy your own Dog and focus on your own relationships and once again congratulations Natalie 🐾