In order to create a better world, we need more kickass dads.
Dads who connect and engage and teach their children. Dads who set an example of integrity and honesty and authenticity. Dads who are committed to their ideals and morals and purpose.
You may ask yourself, “Why me? Why are you picking on dads? Don’t we do enough already?”
You probably think you do quite a bit already. But I’ll bet you dollars to doughnuts that moms do way more than we ever do. That’s just how it is right now. Yes, there are some men who have chosen to take on the stay at home role, or to do quite a bit more of the parenting than others, but those men tend to be the exception, rather than the rule, and by and large, many dads default to letting the mother do the bulk of the parenting work.
“But I have a day job, and I don’t have time to be more involved!”
You might have the hardest job in the world, but you still owe it to your children and your partner to be a stand-up father. You don’t have to be a stay at home dad to be a kickass father, because there are plenty of opportunities to a great dad on a daily basis, even if the only time you have is before and after your day job.
Being a dad is an incredible responsibility. Not only do we work to care for our children’s needs in the present moment, but we also need to consider them as the next generation of humans on Earth, and prepare them accordingly.
In order to create a better world, we need more kickass dads – dads who are involved in their children’s lives and are willing to go above and beyond just living in the same house and providing for their basic needs
As parents, the future of the planet is in our hands. Our children will inherit the world we are creating right now, and they will use those experiences and skills and examples shown to them while growing up in order to adapt and create and resolve their own problems.
Being a father is also an amazing opportunity for personal growth. And when we step up and fully participate in the lives of our children, it’s incredibly fulfilling, on a level that nothing in the world can match. No job, no awards, no huge successes can even compare with the feeling that comes when your child gives you a huge smile and jumps in your lap.
The path of a father is also fraught with peril: your kids will get sick or injured on a regular basis, they will make not-so-wise decisions and need your help, they’ll end up making choices that you don’t agree with, and throughout it all, you’ll try to balance your desire to help and fix their lives with the need to just let them learn and grow based on their own experiences.
Chances are, you didn’t get to take a class in school about fatherhood, and your dad probably didn’t sit down and give you the inside scoop on parenting before you left home, so most of the time, the process of learning how to be a good dad depends on your ability to adapt and evolve as a person, admitting where your weak points are and working to strengthen them. And because babies don’t come with an instruction manual, the whole experience can be quite overwhelming.
We don’t necessarily want to be, or need to be, just like our fathers. Sure, we want to emulate their positive influences on us, and carry on traditions that add to the richness of our children’s lives, but we also want to do it our own way.
Not being the greatest dad ever isn’t that obvious, at least from outside the family, because most of us assume that if the kids are happy and healthy and enjoy spending time with their father, then of course, the dad is a good dad. But all too often, the bar of being a good dad is set pretty low, and as long as we put in a minimum of effort toward fatherhood, it’s easy to overlook the many ways that our upbringing or our old habits can trip us up and pass those unpleasant qualities on to our kids.
No matter who we are, we can always improve our relationship with our kids and our spouse, and we can redefine the meaning of fatherhood each and every day. Need some ideas? Here are 100 ways to be a better father, one day at a time.