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15 Things Only Fathers of Girls Understand

15 Things Only Fathers of Girls Understand

Having a daughter is one of the biggest joys in life. However, as a proud dad you feel responsible about so many things in her life! Sometimes you get overprotective. On other days you act too harsh or not harsh enough. You dread the day she becomes a teenager and hate to admit you’d love to spend less money on her clothes and makeup. Yet you love her unconditionally and will keep calling her “baby girl” even after she turns 30. Here are 15 more things fathers of daughters can understand and wholeheartedly relate to.

1. You are a huge influence on her future partner.

Remember, you cause direct impact on who she chooses to marry some day. Your sweet girl is closely watching you and pays huge attention towards your attitude to her mom and other women around. You are responsible for her future ability to trust, enjoy and shape healthy relationships with the males in her life. Consciously or not, a lot of girls pick their partners based on some characteristics of their fathers.

2. You know how to do her hair and nails.

You do realize that pleating a braid is harder than you’ve always thought. Maybe you are not a great stylist, but you can make killer pigtails. You also had to learn how to manage tangle-prone hair without making her squeal and cry. Also, a good dad knows how to paint girls nails and even allows (occasionally) to let her cover your nails with pinky sparkles.

3. You get hard on her at times.

You can be her harshest critic and will always tell her about her mistakes. You only wish the best for your little girl and truly want her to succeed in life, but your methods and words can sometimes be rather tough. “Do you remember our cat? Well, it died because that vet who treated him was getting Cs at school and though it’s okay. But you see, he now can’t treat pets well. C is not good enough. You should have all As” is kind of a tough speech to a 7-year-old who just lost her favorite pet and got a few average grades at school. But you know, it did give me the right idea why I should study more and learn everything I may need in life.

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4. You would love her to follow your career path.

More and more girls these days do get under the dad’s influence on career path and start working in the same field. However, they are still a minority. While you wish you could pass her your job skills and work interests, share your lifelong experience and have her continue your work, do not impose your opinions too harshly!

A friend of mine who has a successful IT company wanted his daughter to work for him so badly that he made her start learning to code from high school, take sql online courses, major in Math and apply to Caltech as he graduated from it, to get a huge shock in a few months as she secretly sent an application to Columbia and got accepted to Media studies program. Needless to say, they never had great relationships and it took him years to admit he was wrong and pushed too hard.

5. You need to ask for forgiveness.

Probably, more times that you would like to admit that. You may not realize you have unintentionally hurt your daughter’s feelings badly with what seemed to you like a witty pun about a boy she likes or because you’ve missed her school performance. Most of the time she’ll get over it, but when it is a big deal indeed, do ask for forgiveness. And I mean not just plain “sorry,” but a sincere plea for forgiveness. You should let her know that you may not be perfect and sometimes don’t have it all together, but you care about her feelings and love her. Don’t let her grow realizing you’d always be superior and her feelings do not count.

6. You always want the best for her.

Yes, you can be hard on her and demand her to do things you think are right for her. You will always be upset if you see her living the life out of alignment from her potential. You will always want to make sure she takes advantages of the opportunities and achieves everything she’s capable of and more.

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7. You have to be consistent.

Your girl goes through numerous ups and downs, especially as she reaches adolescence. She needs a father’s steady guidance and objective presence. Your daughter needs to know you’ll be always there for her and she can always rely on you. Don’t let her grow with a false belief that men can not be trusted.

8. You need to teach her that appearance isn’t everything.

Yes, it is your role as a dad to teach your girl that the what is inside will take her way further in life than just a pretty face. Raising girls in the modern sensual world is not easy, but you have to explain her that her character, her brains and her self-worth are way more important than a stylish haircut, a pair of good fitting jeans and her long lashes. You are to tell her than exposing too much skin or fitting into size zero is not what makes her really beautiful. Also, you’ll have to spill her out the truth that most models are Photoshopped, her favorite celebs don’t get up in the morning with that perfect makeup and getting a nose job will not make that boy fall in love with her.

9. You’ll need to tolerate her boyfriends.

The harshest times are when people start staring at you when your daughter calls you daddy in public. She’s no longer a sweet little princes, but an attractive young women who now gets a lot of looks from other men on the street. The biggest struggle of all fathers is when she drags her first boyfriend to meet you or you find them making out on the couch when you come home earlier.

Don’t be way too overprotective. Don’t forbid her to date or promise to kill that bastard if you see him again sneaking in her window. You know boys—that can be cruel and try to offend her. But you need to trust her judgments and keep the distance from her love life.

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10. You need to maintain status quo in mother/daughter disputes.

Never ever take sides in disputes going between your daughter and your wife. Once you take someone’s side, you will offend the other one for a lifetime. Just stay neutral and clearly explain you will never be a judge in their disputes.

11. You teach her how to say “no.”

It’s your role to explain her how to set physical boundaries and say “no” to things she does not like and she shouldn’t be afraid or embarrassed of this. Teach her how to say no firmly and direct. Also, make sure she understands when someone else says no—she has to respect it.

12. You need to be a listener.

When she comes to talk to you about her problems, it’s not always that she wants you to give her a solution. Sometimes, you just need to let her talk out, listen, give short encouragements or signs of compassion, instead of offering to fix everything.

13. You know how to avoid her manipulations.

Yes, you love your girl and always want the best for her, but you learned to be tough enough to resist buying her another expensive doll when she gives out a few sobs. You feel bad for cutting down her monthly allowance due to bad grades, but will not change your mind because of some passionate pleads. You need to explain her that manipulations and playing on emotions is not the best strategy to succeed in life.

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14. You share music with each other.

Yes, you kind of hate One Direction, but sharing music with each other is a great way to bond. You play her good classy songs occasionally and explain why you like them. Also, you have taught her the wisdom of volume control and why and when it’s appropriate to wear headphones.

15. You are anxious about the day when you’ll lead her to the altar.

That means your little girl has grown up and now another man becomes an integral part of your life. You are absolutely happy for her, but you kind of dread the time when you’ll need to let her go and admit she has grown up.

Featured photo credit: DVIDSHUB via flickr.com

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Elena Prokopets

Freelance Writer

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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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