What comes to mind when you think of the word, dad? For many it’s more than just a word. It’s love. It’s an inspiration. It’s great memories. And for many when they think of the word dad, they think of hero. That is, my dad is my hero.
Being a dad is an unbelievable privilege for many reasons, but perhaps the most stand out one is that you get to be the biggest influence in a child’s life. This, when done correctly and in love, is one of the most rewarding things in being a dad. A hero dad.
THE IMPORTANCE OF SPENDING TIME
There are many qualities that make a great dad. The most unquestionable one, spending time with your child(ren). Children value time spent with their dad above all. Whether it’s time spent taking them to a recital, playing catch or simply watching a movie together.
It’s during these moments that a child feels most connected to his dad.
As a dad you cannot undermine the importance of spending time with your child. Set time aside daily to spend with your child. Show interest in your child’s life. Ask your child questions about school, how their day went, what they learned, etc.
PLAN ACTIVITIES WITH YOUR CHILD
As we stated, children love to spend time with their dads. Planning activities is a great way to make that happen. Go to the park. Go biking. Go apple picking. Explore with your child. They are young and do not yet know exactly what they like. Help them in that discovery by doing different types of activities with them.
Your child will treasure those moments, literally, for a lifetime. Planning activities with your child and spending time with your child will also plant in them the habits of good parenting. When they grow older they will know what it was like to spend time with dad and want to do the same for their child(ren).
LET THEM LIVE THEIR DREAMS, NOT YOURS
It’s important when you’re raising your child to let them pursue their dreams. Parents can get so caught up in wanting their children to follow in their footsteps, without being aware of it. Be mindful of what your child likes and wants to do and nourish it. Don’t dismiss it because it’s not what you want your child to do.
Certainly you need to provide guidance for your child, but you do not need to tell them exactly what to do. You want your child to make decisions for themselves. After all, it’s what the world will require of them as they get older. So why not let them decide on their own while they’re young?
Let them get the experience of making decisions on their own. Especially while you’re there to guide them if they totally make the wrong decision and mess up.
LEAD BY EXAMPLE
As a dad, remember that your child is always looking up to you. Your child notices your moves. They’re watching your actions and reactions and learning from them. That’s why it’s important to be sure that you are in control of your temperament and emotions, always. Especially around your child(ren).
Whether you notice it or not, your emotional reactions to situations and circumstances will impact the emotional well being of your child in their childhood and adulthood. The next time your child is in the backseat as you drive and a driver cuts you off, be mindful of your reaction, your child is watching and learning.
INSTILL VALUES IN YOUR CHILD
You, as a dad, need to instill values in your child. It’s your responsibility, not the school’s or society at large. Furthermore, why would you want outside forces to instill values in your child? What if you don’t agree with those values? What if those values are completely contradictory to the values that you want your child to have and practice.
Therefore, don’t leave it to chance. Make the time and take the initiative to teach and instill values in your child. Values that will make your child a great contributor to society and humanity. It’s a challenging task, but it comes with many rewards to know that your child is not being tossed back and forth by the ever shifting trends of society.
As a dad you need to embrace the responsibility that comes with the dad title. If you’re going to be a hero to your child, it’s going to take deliberate dedication and effort. Hero dad’s aren’t born. Hero dads are made by the decisions they make and the actions they take with their children.
Make the decision that you’re going to be a hero dad and take the action that is required to be one.
And as always we like to close with a saying, quote or adage and today’s is from Tom Brady (video below): MY DAD IS MY HERO BECAUSE HE’S SOMEONE THAT I LOOK UP TO EVERYDAY.
Now, go forth and change the game!