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If You Were Raised By A Playful Dad, You’re Really Lucky

If You Were Raised By A Playful Dad, You’re Really Lucky

Fathers tend to fit in one of two categories: the incompetent goofball or the detached work-a-holic.

The incompetent goofball is one of those tropes that really needs to go away. Playful dads are not inept parents, joking their way through adulthood. Instead, they’re positively shaping their children’s lives in a meaningful way.

Here are eight reasons why you were really lucky to have a playful dad:

1. He Was Your Friend

When you’re a kid, you need friends. But having friends is never harder than when you’re young and as you grow up, it gets harder.

Yet, if you had a playful dad, making friends was less confusing. Your dad taught you what it means to be a friend, in good times and bad. He taught you that good friends are the ones that are there in good times and in bad, even when one of you makes a mistake.

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He was always there when you felt alone. More importantly, he still is.

2. He Was Friends with Your Friends

Most of your friend’s fathers went to work, came home, watched TV and went to bed. They had a hard day at work and they wanted peace when they finally made it to the sofa. You had to be quiet when visiting other friend’s houses because you didn’t want to disturb their dads.

Your dad made a point to be friends with your friends. He learned their names, knew what kind of juice they liked and always made it a point to play a prank. Everybody liked coming to your house because your dad was not just another grown up. He was everybody’s friend.

3. He Supported Your Half Baked Schemes

Kids have the weirdest ideas. If you think back, you can probably recall one or two elaborate schemes involving some string, a tin can and possibly the neighbor’s cat.

Rather than squashing your dreams, your dad got it and was willing to give you loans for whatever endeavors you dream of pursuing.  He saw your strange ideas as a form of expression and ingenuity. He was always on hand to help you build a new contraption or set up a prank.

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His validation gave you the self-confidence and freedom to be yourself.

4. He Taught You Short Cuts

Playful dads have the best short cuts. They know how to travel through time and cut the length of any operation in half. In your mind, your dad’s pancake canon was a work of sheer genius, even if it was a little messy sometimes.

Your dad taught you that it’s okay to take a shortcut sometimes. But more importantly, he taught you that sometimes it’s less messy to put in the work yourself.

5. He Made the Weirdest and Best Snacks

Other dads would either follow your mom’s nutritional rules or half-heartedly throw whatever they could find on a plate. Your dad, however, made snack time an adventure. He tried out weird combinations. He threw the laws of nutrition (and sometimes gravity) out the window and always managed to encourage you to try new things.

You might not realize it but those pickle and Oreo sandwiches are part of the reason you’re so adventurous in adulthood. Your dad created a safe space for you to experiment with new foods so that you would never be afraid of something that was so good for you.

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6. He Kept Your Secrets

Kids have secrets and most adults don’t take them seriously. As you grow up, these secrets don’t seem like a big deal. But at the time, hearing an adult talk about your dreams and concerns was embarrassing and heartbreaking.

Your playful dad understood the importance of your privacy. He taught you that your private thoughts were valuable. He gave you an example of someone who was wholly and completely trustworthy.

7. He Taught You About Parenting

Now that you’re older, you realize you wouldn’t be the person you are without your dad. He had such a huge impact on your childhood and your adult life that you realize that parenting is about more than feeding, clothing and loving your child.

You learned that parents can encourage their children to be amazing people. He taught you that you can be a role model, a friend and a parent all in one.

8. He Encouraged You to Trust Yourself

You had a childhood role model who did not spend their time telling you “no.” Instead, he encouraged you to explore and learn and ultimately, to he taught you how to trust yourself. You learned how to say “I can” when other people are telling you can’t.

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Even when everyone is saying you can’t and you’re starting to believe them, you know that your dad is on the sidelines telling you that you can.

Your playful dad was not just having fun. He wasn’t just a prankster gliding through life. He was teaching you valuable lessons about friendship, life and how to be the best version of yourself.

Featured photo credit: David via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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