Friend for a reason, a season or a lifetime

I’m just preparing for a final session with a group of people in a mentoring program. The pairs need to have a conversation around whether or not they will continue an informal relationship after the program ends, and if they do how will that evolve.

I was reminded of a saying: “Friends come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime” and decided to use it. I searched online so I could attribute the quote properly. I didn’t find the author (although one site had a hot debate and counter-claims of copyright) but I did find the poem that the line comes from. I’m sharing it, as many others do, as author unknown.

I think it is apt for mentors as well as friends.

Reason, Season, or Lifetime
People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.
When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.
Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.
Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.
LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

— Unknown

Mentoring relationships evolve. For some, mentoring morphs into friendship – though it’s fine if it doesn’t – some highly successful mentoring is kept strictly professional. Sometimes, the respect each has for the other leads to reciprocal mentoring. Others are happy to remain in contact as professional colleagues. Occasionally, mentoring doesn’t end well. It fizzles out, or the relationship is dissolved. Quite often people who were mentored are able to mentor others and mentors go in search of mentors for themselves.

So whether it’s for a reason, a season or a lifetime, enjoy your mentoring relationship.

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About Ann Rolfe

Ann Rolfe is internationally recognised as Australia's leading specialist in mentoring, and is available for speaking, training and consulting. Here Ann shares her knowledge and allows you to ask your most pressing questions about mentoring.

One Response to “Friend for a reason, a season or a lifetime”

  1. Anonymous October 19, 2012 11:54 pm #

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