Sunday, June 18, 2006

I Learned from my Dad...

1) To respect, honor and love my wife -- "Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them" (Col. 3:19). It's a lifetime contract with constant interaction. Sharing, listening, hugging, touching, feeling, flowers, chocolate - a lot of honey keeps the bear happy (Pooh's Theory). I wish I was better at this.

2) To discipline the kids with love not anger -- "Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged" (Col. 3:21). This was hard - I finally figured out, with a lot of help, that patience, penalties, rewards, logic and reason were the best course.

3) To create special family moments that are remembered - vacations, family events, sports activities, day trips. You will talk about them the rest of your lives. Hopefully, you have pictures, movies or videos.

4) To be part of your extended family -- know your siblings, your in-laws, their families, your aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, etc. through visits and hosting. Enjoy your elders and encourage them to talk about their lives. Attend family reunions and special moments - more memories to talk about forever.

5) To keep learning throughout your life -- accept and master educational challenges, understand relationships, physics and engineering, history and geography. Then there are sports, religion and politics.

6) To work hard at your job to support your family -- continue your technical education, rise to your level of competence, be a loyal employee, team member and leader, help others improve and grow.

7) To have a lot of fun in your life -- Laugh often, enjoy pleasure, take many day trips and vacations to interesting places far and near. Play hard with your wife, kids, family and friends.

8) To be competitive, fair and encouraging, but not obsessive, critical or cheating -- in family games, in sports, and in public. Give credit for good things that happen.

9) To be honest and fair dealing with people -- Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

10) To take time to do things that you like doing -- hobbies, puttering, reading, etc. The key is to do this without impacting on time with the family.

These are my Top 10 Lessons learned from my Dad. I saw how he approached life on these issues - and I decided, on some of them, to be different than he was. However, I am still a work in progress.

Happy Father's Day to all of you dads.

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