Courage to Take a Different Path

The most frightening thing in life is reaching for what lies deepest in your heart. You won’t get there alone.

Mentors ignite courage and fuel progress.

Linda Rottenberg

This post is based on my conversation with Linda Rottenberg the cofounder and CEO of Endeavor, the world’s leading organization devoted to identifying, mentoring, and investing in fast-growing businesses and author of “Crazy is a Compliment.”


“You go to mentors when you’re really scared.” Linda Rottenberg

Mentors help us find courage to take a different path or face new challenges. They understand the path ahead. But, more important, they understand us.

The birth of courage happens when you confront fear.


“At some point I started to realize that my challenges as a leader were really more internal.” Linda Rottenberg.

Find mentors who speak to heart issues. Technical experience and skills are useful but the real issues are emotional.

In her own words. The issues are mainly emotional (1:55):

Two roles of successful mentors:

Tough love

“The first role of mentor is tough love.” Linda Rottenberg

The greatest gift you give is often the toughest one to hear. Great mentors tell you what you need to hear not what you want to hear.

A kick in the pants is often the tipping point of your journey.

In her own words (1:39):


Profound influence is more about frailty than strength. Connections are built when you expose the ups and downs of your personal journey.

Let people see your struggle if you want to help them with theirs.

In her own words. Less superman (1:47):

What have you learned about being a mentor?

What have you learned about finding mentors?

Hear Linda Rottenberg present at the World Business Forum in New York City Oct 7, 2014. Use discount code LDRFREAK to save $200 on registration.

Buy “Crazy is a Compliment.”