Mentor ideals do not align with my own

87 Replies

Keep him as a mentor if you find value in them but look for other mentors as well. We are not limited to only one mentor in life. I'm naturally anti-social but have gotten pretty good at sales as most people seem to like me as an individual and I'm extremely educated and experienced in the niche I'm in. I'm not super detailed orientated when it comes to systems but my partner is. With dedication, persistence, the right team, and the willingness to always be a student of real estate, I believe most people can find success in one niche or another in the broad field of real estate.

You guys are the best! This feed makes me appreciate BiggerPockets and this intelligent community. Thank you all again!

Originally posted by @Christopher Lewis :

@Caleb Heimsoth . I haven't paid him a dime, I met him at an entrepreneurial event through NC State. 

If he’s useful to you, keep with it but I wouldn’t put to much emphasis on someone being a “mentor” or not.  Just learn on your own and network.  Didn’t see you were local to me when I saw this thread.  Hope to see you at some local meetups  

@Caleb Heimsoth Are there any meetups that you would recommend in particular? The Triangle area has huge potential for growth in both real estate and technology. If you have time, I'd love to buy you coffee sometime so that we may discuss future growth in the Triangle area.

Originally posted by @Christopher Lewis :

@Caleb Heimsoth Are there any meetups that you would recommend in particular? The Triangle area has huge potential for growth in both real estate and technology. If you have time, I'd love to buy you coffee sometime so that we may discuss future growth in the Triangle area.

I sent you a message and connection request.  Let’s connect 

@Christopher Lewis - I imagine your mentor is 60+ yrs old. Has a different mindset and will prove to be a great mentor BUT don’t confuse a mentor with a mastermind group. A mentor is there for a voice of reason and to share his experiences while a mastermind, a group of like minded individuals striving toward similar goals, are there to help push you toward your goals. Keep the mentor (if he’s free) and join a mastermind group. 

The biggest problem with personality tests is there's no way for them to measure what's in your heart and at the end of the day, that's where success or failure happens, in the heart! Don't let some so-called Mentor steal your dream!

@Jay Helms Thank you! That's a great point. I have been trying to form my own mastermind group, but I've been finding it hard to find other like minded people.

@Christopher Lewis . No , you shouldn't fire him.  Learn to take constructive criticism in stride. Even if the answer wasn't what you expected, you should keep the dialogue open, so you get a better understanding. You should ask him to elaborate and provide you more details about what particular traits you exhibited that made him believe that you couldn't cut it as an entrepreneur. 

Every feedback you get can make you or break you. 

So, no big deal here really  !!! Nobody needs to get fired at this time. 

Always remember: You are the CEO of your dreams. 
Good Luck.

@Christopher Lewis Here are my two cents  - I hope they help in some small way!

Having a "regular job" and being financially independent aren't mutually exclusive. In fact, a normal 9-5 can be a powerful tool on your way to financial independence. If you take that job, live below your means, and wisely invest the extra money you're making (such as in real estate), that is a great way to speed your journey toward financial independence. I'm not too far along with my investing journey, but I have already been able to ditch a high-paid but unhappy career for one that pays terribly but I absolutely love, and I did it with security because of the cash flow from my rental properties. I wouldn't have been able to buy those rental properties in the first place without the extra money from my job, though.

I have also had two awesome mentors in real estate, and they have both been people who were already doing what I wanted to learn how to do, and they taught me because people love sharing their passion. If a paid life coach is giving you advice that doesn't resonate, you don't have to listen to it. Find someone who is doing what you want to do, and learn from them instead. 

@ChristopherLewis If you want to achieve financial independence, you will find a way that works best for you ("where there is a will, there is a way"). Real estate is a way to go, but it's not the only way to go. Take your mentor's feedback as one credible data point and continue moving forward. Perhaps real estate will end up being your means to a wealthy end, or perhaps something else will work better for you. The checkout clerk at your local supermarket does care whether the money you use to buy groceries came from real estate investments or other investments.

@Christopher Lewis sounds like you need to fire the mentor... Find mentors in the niche that you are interested in. It sounds like you want to be in Real estate so network with like minded people and in turn you will find free mentors. I agree with @Anastasia G. become a part of team with partners who may have a strong characteristic that you may lack or are not that great at. A personality test can only tell you so much.. 

@Christopher Lewis

College is a terrible place to meet true entrepreneurial minded people. Take it from someone who got my degree. Formal education mostly (not Always) prepares people for a lifetime of employment and any mentors I met through the school or who were heavily involved in the school just didn't get it. You gotta get more real estate mentors who are doing EXACTLY what it is you want to do. Other than that their advice should be taken with a grain of salt. Had plenty of mentors who tried to talk me out of entrepreneurship because they never took the leap themselves. They're scared and people fear what they don't understand. And try to transpose that fear into others. Safeguard your dreams and be judicious about who you let mentor you.

@Christopher Lewis  

If you hired a good mentor, they would give you good advice. Arguably you should then take their advice. If you hired a bad mentor, it calls into question your judgement. In that case it is hard to trust your judgement, so if you believe he is wrong, how do we know you are right?

What I am unclear on is why having a secure job and chasing FI cannot be done in tandem? Many entrepreneurs are not financially independent and many people with secure jobs have achieved FI. 

My advice is get a secure job and hustle as an entrepreneur on the side. 

@Russell Brazil I'm in the same boat! Although I made it in the top 5 in my office the first year and consistently outperform other agents.

Anyone can be successful in RE, just learn the skills it takes and don't be afraid to take risks.

@WesJohnson. I agree many college instructors are not ideal role models for successful entrepreneuring, but the world is changing. College (or anything else in life, for that matter) is what you make it. Some colleges today have entrepreneurship programs (which were a lunatic fringe idea back in the 1970s when I went through business school). Someone who wants to start a business will find a way to do so no matter where they happen to be. I learned to think through every piece of advice I received before accepting or rejecting it, no matter where it came from. One thought leader once advised people to stay close to your friends and closer to your enemies. You never know ahead of time where your next successful idea will come from.

@Christopher Lewis go to any of the REIA meetings in the area. There is a plethora of information and networking to be had at these meetings. This is the website the Triangle REIA (TREIA). I am a new investor and went to my first meeting last night. Just check it out.

Thank you for your service.

I don't understand this whole idea of mentors. Real Estate is not that difficult. Run some comps buy at the bottom 10% of market prices and make sure it cashflows after vacancy/capex/reserves and you can't go too wrong. Find a broker who knows your local market and has been referred to you (can find this at any local meetup) they will lead you to deals. Have them put you on auto search and research every new listing, you will quickly be able to eyeball what has highest rent to purchase price ratio for your target area and pick out the good deals. Lots of strategies here on BP of how to then grow to more deals through helocs, etc. 

No need to pay a mentor. Go to a local meetup and you will find lots of cool people doing what you want to do. Most of them will be happy to help you for free. 

@Christopher Lewis my initial response was to say “hell yes, fire him.” However, maybe you should consider what he has said and integrate the advice with your goals. Perhaps you could become a financial consultant or start a financial consulting firm, another asset. If this guy has provided you good mentorship in the past, then just because this very candid suggestion does not jive with your original plan, let’s not throw out the baby with the bath water but rather use it to your advantacge and accelerate your achievement of FI.

@Ryan Johnson

Remember Edison was sent home from school. He was told he did not have the intellect to be with regular kids. A dedicated mother is what he had.

I would ask your mentor to help identify the gaps. Network with people and learn those skills. We can all learn and train ourselves.

Chris life is what you make of it bro. Anything in life can be attained if you really want it and work towards your goals. Do not be influenced by the opinions of others no matter who they are. The Shark Tank is wrong all the time. Believe in yourself and strive to be a better you each day. You are only in competition with yourself and no one else. I would not take too much stock into what he says. I am not going to advise you on what to do with that person. However, use what he says as motivation. Greatness awaits 

Originally posted by @Christopher Lewis :

My "mentor" told me to stop chasing FI and to get a secure job. Should I fire him? What should I do?

 I have a sort of unique take on this (or so I think), so bear with me please.

 I grew up in the Los Angeles, where immigrant real estate entrepreneurs have made fortunes, especially in Class B and C multifamily, and mid sized hotels. We're talking folks from Korea, who sometimes started out in grocery stores and retail, had stores burned in the '92 riots, went through lots of hardship. People from Vietnam, who fled here in the 70's with the clothes on their back after the war. Chinese and Taiwanese immigrants, plenty of whom started their own businesses. Others were immigrants from Iran who were fleeing deadly anti-Semitism back home after the 1979 revolution, and got into the garment business and then real estate. Then, there are folks from India who were engineers and jewelry store owners and started investing their money. 

A few generations earlier, folks from Italy and Poland and Russia and elsewhere in Europe did this too, in Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, I'm sure lots of other places. These folks built property EMPIRES under very adverse conditions (WWI, WWII, Great Depression etc).

The point is, folks came here with limited money, few connections, an unfamiliar environment, a shaky grasp on the language, and sometimes, not much education, and in most cases, limited real estate knowledge. Disadvantages, right? Sure. What they DID have was a drive to succeed. They formed relationships, often within their own community, because they had no other relationships really. They pooled capital. They got out there and took action. 

Was it hard? Knowing a couple of these folks in LA personally, I can say, hell yes. Would anyone looking at likely real estate investing successes in Los Angeles, 30 or 40 years ago, or Chicago and NYC 110 years ago, have picked most of these folks? Almost certainly not. But here we are. 

The point is, we all come face some sort of challenges in succeeding (sometimes, like these folks, severe obstacles), and we all have our strengths and weaknesses. I know my construction and rehab knowledge needs work, for example. Other folks may not be outgoing, or understanding financing as well.

However, you capitalize on their strengths, want it bad enough, and find others who compliment what you don't have (and make sure their weaknesses get just a little better, don't drag them down). If this is what you want, and you're willing to do what it takes, no one but yourself can truly stop you. People have come from nothing to achieve, not just in real estate either. 

Now, your mentor may have had a point (inartfully expressed, to be sure) that starting out with a full time job can make sense. If you had a good job and make solid 6 figures, getting financing for properties early on is easier, and you don't have to look for as many partners early on. Also, a job does provide stability - there's nothing dirty about an honest day's work, and moving towards your goal of financial freedom over time. I think most people do it that way.

As far as what he said about your skills, you're not meant to be an entrepreneur, whatever, you can treat it as one data point, and keep moving forward, or you can let it get you down. We all have people and situations that don't encourage us, but we do choose how we react to it. If this mentor doesn't work for you, fine, ditch him, but align with folks who DO push you forward. 

Have you heard of Benjamin Hardy, the motivational coach and I think psychologist? Google him, he's great. He talks a lot about how one's personality and identity is, in a sense, not fixed, and can be shaped by actions. So, the right actions can change your identity and personality, not just the other way around. If you want to be more "entrepreneurial" or more "real estate oriented" then take actions in line with that goal. 

Go to meetups. Learn about investing. Read books. Find folks you can align with, not just as investors, but over time, as friends too. People with drive and character and good values. And over time, you'll start doing deals. I'm fairly early in my investing career, and have a lot more action to take, and things to learn. I know 0 compared to some folks I know, even people my age who've been doing it for 8 or 10 or 15 years. But I believe I'll get there. Doubt at your own risk. 

And so will you. Go forth and prosper my friend. Financial independence is absolutely something you can achieve, and much more. 

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Create Lasting Wealth Through Real Estate

Join the millions of people achieving financial freedom through the power of real estate investing

Start here