The Magic of an Outside Perspective

September 22, 2020  •  Marketing Strategy

Personal growth comes from self-awareness. Regular reflection through journaling or meditation is a great step in this direction—as long as your reflection is accurate.

If you’re really serious about growth, you need outside help. You need a mentor.

Reality Is Often Distorted

If you’ve ever been to a playground or circus with fun mirrors, you know the slightest bend to a mirror creates a distorted image that reflects your image differently than you actually are. Self-reflection works the same way.

At the circus, it’s easy to recognize distorted images. You’re reflected as stretched out or squeezed, ridiculously tall or comically short and stout.

In daily life, distortions are often much smaller. How do you know when your self-reflection is distorted by subtle bends that are throwing you off?

Mentors Give You Clarity

The only way to overcome this challenge is to expose yourself to mentors who can provide an outside perspective.

While mentorship hasn’t died off, it has drastically changed with the digital age. It’s now fairly uncommon to have formal 1-on-1 mentorship relationships (though if you have a trusted mentor like that, be grateful for the advantage it brings).

Today’s mentors can be found on blogs and magazines (like this one), as well as podcasts and YouTube channels, or at in-person live events. The changing mentorship landscape requires a new learning approach. You can adopt this approach with five simple steps:

Step 1: Identify areas of desired growth

If you’re journaling daily, you may find repeated themes where you’re falling short in certain areas of your life. Similarly, you may have specific goals you fall short on each year, that you can’t seem to accomplish on your own.

Having a mentor in every life domain sounds compelling, but your time and attention are limited. You’re better off narrowing your focus to one or two areas of life where you most need an outside perspective right now.

Step 2: Select specialized mentors

Once you’ve identified the areas in which you need an outside perspective, the next step is to select a trusted mentor for each focus area.

You don’t want multiple mentors in each area, because you’re likely to get lost in the confusion of who to follow when advice from multiple mentors doesn’t match up.

For personal finance, you might decide to follow Dave Ramsey. For leadership or productivity, you’d likely follow Michael Hyatt (since you’re here). And if platform is on your mind, let’s not forget Platform University.

Try Platform University!

Want to give Platform University (your one-stop shop for building an online audience) a spin? Get your first week of Platform University for just $1. Cancel anytime. Try Platform University for Just $1

Step 3: Commit to consuming content

Selecting your digital mentors isn’t enough. You also need to commit to consuming your digital mentor’s content, so their perspective can influence your own.

That often starts with blog posts or podcasts, but could also mean live video training or upgrading to a paid experience to commit to deeper learning and transformation over time.

Step 4: Check your progress with digital tools

In a 1-on-1 mentor relationship, regular check-ins are a great way to get an outside perspective on where you’re at, how you’re growing, and what you need to watch out for next.

In digital mentorship, direct coaching is limited. To account for that, you need to intentionally seek out tools like The Platform Assessment that identify what’s holding you back from success.

Step 5: Reassess your needs every year

Seasons change, and the mentors you follow today may not be the same mentors you need to follow a full year from now.

As you put your mentor’s advice into practice, you should see continued growth. Once a year is a good cadence for reassessing your current needs and refocusing on areas of your life that need attention as your needs change.

Your New Mentor is Waiting

Let’s commit to personal growth. Let’s commit to finding mentors who will help us focus and become the best possible versions of ourselves

About John Meese

John leads a team focused on simplifying online marketing for professionals as the Dean of Platform University and lives in Columbia, Tennessee, with his wife and three beautiful children. You won't find him on social media, but you can connect to him personally on his blog: