I have no idea.
I’m not the expert. I can give theories and offer methods that should work. I can tell you dozens of tips that, when applied, have potential to improve your dad-quotient to Ward Cleaver status.
The key word is “applied.” It’s much easier to know what to do than how to make it work in real life.
(Disclaimer: Your humble corespondent is not only not an expert, but has also failed in many of the areas listed herein. He’s had some successes, but not enough to be considered an authority. His purpose is merely to share some tidbits he’s gathered in nearly forty years of parenthood. And you know he’s serious when he speaks in the third person.)
Know this. You’ll never do this perfectly. But with persistence and consistency, you’ll gradually improve. Baby steps. Celebrate the victories!
Before the nuts and bolts of perfect paternalism, seek some bigger worldview wisdom.
1. GET ENOUGH SLEEP
This applies to everything from your job, to your marriage, to driving. You can’t be your best anything if you’re groggy, foggy, and cranky. This means scheduling it into your calendar, getting into a routine, and doing your best to get up and go to bed at the same time every day.
Take at least 20 minutes a day to walk. It helps you unwind. Listen to music. Or podcasts. Or nothing! Pray. Think. Daydream. You’ll be surprised how much a brisk walk can energize your mind, body, and spirit!
3. EAT PLANTS
Not necessarily just plants, but move them up on your priority list. More salads. Fewer snack cakes. More fruit. Fewer Mountain Dews (or any other sodas). Make one change in the right direction today. Get used to it, and after a few days, make another. When you feel better about yourself, you’ll more confidently take on difficult tasks, like being a dad.
Read Your Bible And Pray. First thing. 10 minutes. More if you can. As soon as you get up and awake enough to function. Gradually, you’ll begin to notice improvements in your mood, your attitude, your peace of mind. You’ll be less likely to sweat the small stuff. You’ll gain wisdom on how to handle your little God-Love-Its.
Have you noticed all these tips so far are on taking care of yourself? Exactly. Now:
5. LISTEN TO THE EXPERTS
Again, I’m not one of them. I’ve just listed some proven ways to take care of yourself so you’re ready for the hands-on advice. I’ve learned much from ministries like FocusontheFamily.com, FamilyLife.com, and my church. There is no counsel like good Christian counsel. When you’re healthy physically and spiritually, you’re ready to go to the next level.
Being a dad is one of the most important things you’ll do in your life! Why not utilize what’s available to be the best you can be?
So get started! Put God first in it. He’ll guide you to be a great dad!
Just like Him.
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