DiscoverDefining Dad BodS3 E48 - Abundant Fatherhood
S3 E48 - Abundant Fatherhood

S3 E48 - Abundant Fatherhood

Update: 2021-06-06
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Have you ever heard of the cycle of history?

“Hard Times make Strong Men

Strong Men make Good Times

Good Times make Weak Men

Weak Men make Hard Times”

What if parents could find a way to break the cycle so that Good Times make BETTER MEN AND WOMEN? What if the cycle of history could be broken and things could get better and better?

What if the hard-earned lessons of privation and hardship could be passed down well from generation to generation even in times of abundance such that the pendulum swing back to privation and hardship could be avoided altogether?

Maybe it’s a pipe dream. But as I raise my sons, these are the things that keep me up at night— and here is the best list I can put together so far of how to avoid this trap in fatherhood.

1) Teach them how to choose a good spouse by working well with yours. One of the things that’s lost in fatherlessness is the example of what worthwhile, productive, peaceful relationships look like. Having a great companion will teach them more than you can.

2) Get in and stay in the best shape you can manage. The grit, endurance, and discipline that comes from eating well and exercising regularly is invaluable. Additionally whatever potential is wrapped up in a person’s DNA becomes foundationally impeded when untrained.

3) Tell your story. Just because they didn’t grow up like you doesn’t mean those lessons weren’t valuable. Most children don’t know the struggles of their father until late in life- if at all. Privation teaches by necessity. Love teaches by admiration.

4) Play as often as you can. They’ll have to learn to play every game with the best hand they’ve been dealt. And How to have some fun while doing it. That’s most of life. Model the good sport, be gracious in defeat, and play to win.

5) Let them see you fail. Men who grew up without dads think they must only show their successes. Not true. The most valuable thing we can teach our children is that THEY WILL FAIL. Success is built on HOW we respond to failure. Model humility and they will too.

6) Serve the less fortunate with them. Exposure to the tougher side of life is important for the cultivation of gratitude and selflessness. Don’t let them naively believe that abundance the natural state of existence — to whom much is given, much is expected.

7) Introduce them to history and drama and talk about it. Both religious and non-religious traditions have powerful histories that give each generation common languages and points of reference. Operating with wisdom requires an understanding of the story we are living out.

8) Spend time hiking Nature is naturally beautiful and naturally humbling. Sunlight, fresh air, and the sheer grandiosity of creation is a powerful force that drives a man to a fully integrated sense of self.

9) Work hard and invite them to do the same—with patience. Kids are capable of immense determination and indomitability. Give them many chances to work shoulder to shoulder with you and watch your diligence rub off on them.

10) Define words like Courage, honor, integrity, humility, peace, patience, mercy, forgiveness, joy, discipline, fidelity... And their counterparts Malice, deceit, suffering, strife, envy, arrogance, rage, sloth... And learn to tell the stories make these words come to life.

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This information is meant to be actionable information to promote health and well-being and not to be used to diagnose or treat medical symptoms or conditions.
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S3 E48 - Abundant Fatherhood

S3 E48 - Abundant Fatherhood

Alex VanHouten