No man is an island. There is no I in team. And medicine is a team sport.
For a lot of us, we’ve been told to seek out mentors since we were in high school. And as they come and go (and some of them stay for years), I’ve noticed that there never is an end to mentorship. The residents I look up to all have mentors. The fellows, even the attending providers, all have mentors that they reach out to for guidance.
The great thing about mentors is that they don’t have to be all-inclusive. Mentors can help with your career or other endeavors. I don’t believe there is a one size fits all mentor. Not all of us can find a Dumbledore to our Harry Potter.
I’ve found mentors through organic experiences, though some people want more formal relationships with mentors. Either works fine in my opinion. Most of those who I believe are mentors are those who I shared experiences with and who taught me valuable lessons. I would say on each rotation, I’ve found a resident or attending who has been a mentor for me in my own growth and development. Be open to finding mentors in the most unlikely of places too!
There are a lot of resources about establishing mentors on the web. The great thing is that mentors are not something you put on a resume. They are relationships. That means the pressure to do it right doesn’t exist. At least for me.
What do you say? How have you found mentors in medicine?