Each day, men are becoming fathers in a society that has shifted focus from a woman being the primary caretaker, to co-parenting. When fathers take a more active role in their child’s life, it is not only more fulfilling for the parent, but the child will benefit as well.
1. Have Meals Together
It does not matter which meal it is, but part of a healthy family life lies in sharing meals. It provides structure on days that are busy. This time also facilitates communication between the family. The children and parents can discuss what they are doing and what they would like to do.
2. Provide Your Kids With a Lifelong Self-worth
Whether you realize it or not, you are a role model for your child. A father can show a daughter how she ought to be treated and respected by a man, and a father can show his son how he should act with humility, honesty, and responsibility.
3. Instill in Your Children a Love for Reading
It is obvious that television and other technology dominates our lives every single day. Taking the time to read to your child will instill a love for reading, and this will carry on through their life to ensure growth. Read to them when they are young, and encourage them to read when they are able to on their own.
When a child has something that they would like to say, always listen. If you continuously tell them that they need to hold on, they will learn that is an acceptable answer to tell someone as they grow up. Put down the smart phone or laptop and engage in a conversation with them.
5. Spend Time with Your Children Doing Fun Things
This is not as easy as it may sound. If you are unable to make time for the kids, they will feel neglected. You will need to make sacrifices sometimes, but once time is lost, you can’t go back. A great way to enjoy time together is to plan fun outdoor activities, like hunting or fishing.
6. It’s OK to Show Your Tender Side
Children need to be shown that they are loved, wanted, and accepted by their family. Hug your children, kiss them goodnight – just take a moment out of your day to show them how much they mean to you, even if it is just a small gesture.
7. Display Integrity
Be the same father in public that you are behind closed doors. If you make promise upon promise all week about having fun on the weekend, but never pull through, your children will start to see the transparency of what you are saying. Keep your promises and practice what you preach.
8. Discipline Equates Character Development, Not Anger
It is inevitable that a child will need discipline in their lifetime, but often times, one common mistake that parents make is that their anger overshadows the lesson that should be taught. Discipline out of love while being fair. Remind them that actions have consequences, but desirable behavior comes with rewards.
9. Communicate as a Family
Don’t underestimate the power of positive words. When problems arise regarding the child, be sure to include the child in the conversation. When they know that the family is one united unit, they will feel more secure. This will also help to build trust within the parent-child relationship.
10. Always Remember that Being a Father is a Permanent Job
Even when the children are grown up and are leaving home, they will still look to you for advice and wisdom. You will always be an indispensable part of their life, with the ability to provide a model for how they should live as responsible adults.