There are a lot of great coaches who make sure that coaching their athletes remain good learners while building a positive growth mindset. These coaches express by their words and actions what they believe and what they value. Promoting a positive mindset by praising good effort, persistence in overcoming obstacles, focus, learning, are the same fundamentals that many of us dads can promote in own families. Preparing our youngsters for the big game or adulthood can seem like a challenging task, but if we focus on the big picture of the program with implementing important values-we can put together a plan for achieving it.
Coaching: How Dad's Coach Their Kids
Probably the most important element of a dad coaching the fundamentals of life, is the presence of a positive male role model in their life. A son or daughter needs more than structure and supervision from a dad, they need both a model and a teacher. As our children progress through the development phases (from toddler to an adolescent to an adult) we are systematically teaching our kids the fundamentals that will help them maximize their full potential. By weaving our actions and words as we teach life skills can be very helpful in leading with our kids. Our sons and daughters must see their role model in action. The world needs fathers, true fathers that can lead and envision an effective parenting game plan.
Anyone who is familiar with football knows that the athletes are drilled on the fundamentals of that sport, and the coaches make it clear by expressing their vision and expectations. They don’t sit around a campfire to talk about it. That’s not their technique. It’s this whole idea of teamship and team building. What are we trying to build together? It’s at the core of athletics. Clarity of vision is crucial to team success. Once you have a clear picture of what you want, then you can put together a plan for achieving it. Spend some time now (in the off season) and get clear on what you want in your program. Be specific. Once you are clear – share it with other. The more you put your vision out there (to assistants, administrators, players, parents etc) the more real it becomes.1
Truly, fatherhood is a very big responsibility. This all may seem like a huge responsibility for any father to recognize let alone understand. The biggest challenge is to balance one’s focus on the big picture of the program. It doesn’t take a perfect man to father his sons or daughters, but an effective game plan can help. So get your kids in the huddle, speak your vision and start team building your family now.
By Dave Armstrong: Authenticdads.com
In today's society, it is so vital for parents to be pro-active toward parenting our teens education. As a father of teen sons I've seen the rewards of being supportive in their school work and how they learn. Investing in their education is a long-term goal but it can only be achievable if they're willing to learn. It's not just about helping them with their homework, I think it's more about teaching the social skills that can help them relate well in everyday real-life situations. Everything from their values to how they deal with peer pressure can help steer them through the turbulent years of middle and high school if we are consistent in guiding them in the right direction. As a father it should be our goal to protect and impart any sound advice to help our sons and daughters find solutions easily and understand what's going on around them.
When I was growing up my parents were more focused on my grades than about learning. Not to say that they didn't want me to learn what I was being taught-they did. Although grades are very important, when our kids learn how to manage their time and schoolwork it can help them clearly understand the principles and practices of their education. As our kids move from elementary school to middle school and eventually high school, most struggled to adjust the levels of responsibility structured by faculty and administrators. Being in the picture and spending time with our teens, we can discuss values and model skills that can help them increase their feelings of confidence to succeed in school and life.
Parenting our teens Education can help them better organize their time and studies:
- Communicate and share ideas with your children; even casual conversation can open the door for teachable opportunities to share ideas that can help them develop educationally. Communicating together as a family by just listening and talking will make a difference.
- We should not bribe our kids to get good grades; they need to know that they're getting good grades on their own behalf- not because they are forced to. They need to learn the sole responsibility of achieving academic successes which can help build their confidence socially and emotionally as they mature.
- Describe before you prescribe; talk regularly about grades, and talk about why they may be where they are. Explore with your child the causes for his or her lower-than-expected grades. Our grades lower than you expect because homework is not being turned in? Are homework assignments turned in, but test scores poor? Does your student need help with note taking or listening skills? Before you decide on an approach, you should fully understand what is at the root of the problem.1
- Learning management skills; for many kids making the adjustment from middle school to high school can be very overwhelming. Helping our kids get create new habits by organizing their assignments, projects, and note taking can help them stay focused and get things turned in on time.
- Getting involved at school; getting acquainted with the teachers and school administrators can create connections to the people in your son or daughter's school life and give you a better feel for what's happening at school.
Always try to remember to make learning a priority for your tween/teen. As your son or daughter progresses through the school year, we should all be motivated to help them succeed. The less pressure they have they have from school work and other activities, the stronger and more confident your teen will be when social and peer pressure comes at them. Being intentional towards parenting our teens education can allow us to work on solutions together with our sons or daughters and help channel their energy into positive outlets..
By Dave Armstrong; Authentic dads.com
1.) “Talking to your children about school grades” Wayne Parker, About.com Guide
Parenting can be a challenging task any dad. A father's words, actions and disposition transmit beliefs, values and character to his children. This is a reason why parental influence in shaping and nurturing children is pivotal and vital to the physical, emotional and spiritual growth of a child. With all of the physical and emotional changes that are happening in a young teens life, it is hardly surprising that most teenagers have difficulties finding their own identity. Our sons and daughters are being influenced by factors beyond the household sphere of influence that we as parents would normally have supervision over-in fact, kids are often influenced by the constant company they keep. So it is important for us dads to be attentive and consistent in parenting our teenage son or daughter.
Starting off on the right foot with kids-especially teens-can sometimes seem like a daunting ordeal. Building an emotional bond with your teen can start casually by expressing interest spending quality time with them, and genuinely following through of course. By taking opportunities to spend time with your kids you make yourself available to them, which encourages your son or daughter to open up and share their views and thoughts. Studies show that teenagers who felt a strong bond with their parents are less likely to experience emotional stress, drug dependency, or isolation. A father's enduring presence is noticed when the children pick up a life lesson or two, which is why it is important for parents to be aware of what values they are actually teaching their kids through their own behavior and choices. Parents know all too well that children don't follow what you tell them to do so much as do what you do-actions truly speak louder than words.
Opportunities for conversation with children-especially teenagers-can sometimes feel awkward or tricky to a lot of parents, but it's important to take the time out to discuss sensitive issues (like sex, religion, and the dangers of illicit drug use) with them. By engaging your teen and open communication, a parent can learn more about their son or daughter-what their feelings and fears are, and are thoughts and opinions about matters that affect and interest them. After a long day or our thoughts are elsewhere it can be so easy to zone out when our kids want to be seen, heard, and understood. They need to know that we are a stable presence in their life. When we communicate and really listen to our kids, they will seek our advice, comfort, and support when life gets little messy. Spending time with our kids even in the not-so rosy moments reinforces the parent-teen bond that strengthens family ties and develops into lifelong relationships that can whether the test of time.
Today, there are too many dad's that are more concerned with being a friend to their teen or being liked-than they are about being a good parent. I think a big part of the bond between a father and his teenage son or daughter is the sense of safety and security, and structuring boundaries and rules is crucial. Teaching accountability where there are consequences for their actions and behaviors will enhance their maturity level. Keep an open mind as a parent, and be willing to learn with and from your teenage son or daughter. We all make mistakes and it's important to realize that our parenting skills will often be tested. The best legacy every father could ever leave behind in this world is manifested in his children when they, in turn, take on the role of being responsible adults or parents themselves later on.
By Dave Armstrong: Authenticdads.com
Is there really such a thing as a successful marriage? Much like the Loch Ness monster, Unidentified Flying Objects, and Sasquatch, a truly happy marriage sounds like a myth. If marriage was a book, it would be stacked in the mystery section of any library. Yes, the perfect marriage is an unanswered question to most of us but it is still something we all strive for in life. With hopeful expectations it is a mystery we all want to solve. When we come to a marriage relationship, we bring emotional baggage, different personalities, goals and expectations. Even though romance is important, compatibility is a big issue in a healthy marriage and family planning. Successful marriages come to agree on the direction their marriage will take and how they will approach matters in life.
The key to a successful marriage is, first and foremost -communication. If a marriage is to stand the test of time, then both partners must make communication a priority in their relationship. In everyday life, we express our values, beliefs and personal goals. So why is it so hard for a lot of us guys to communicate on a more intimate level with our wives? In a healthy relationship emotional intimacy is a necessary way to build trust and support for one another as you grow together. And when children come into the picture, it will demonstrate the best positive model of what family is about.
Remember these simple yet effective ways to keeping your marriage healthy one:
1. Your shared goals will make it easier to pursue the same life paths due to the common vision and commitment you and your spouse share. Just like I said before, compatibility is important. Everything from how you deal with conflict to having children, a parenting plan, and religious beliefs, etc. Chances are there will be disagreements. But the more you and your spouse openly communicate any differences without pushing buttons, the better your chances are for a healthy relationship.
2. Understanding each partner's childhood growing up and how they were parented is essential. That can have a big influence on a marriage and raising a family. As a divorced dad with two sons, I was aware of how distant my dad was, but never realized that I was living out the same pattern in my own life. If we are not consciously attentive to who we are is an individual, and where not to care about example we set as a husband or father.
3. Emotional intimacy may leave us a little vulnerable with each other and can be a bit frightening. Now were talking about feelings, but don't we go there at one point or another when were developing that significant friendship before marriage. Discussing our emotions is something a lot of us guys aren't real comfortable doing. Some boys grow up being told to “man up” or “big boys don't cry”. Emotional intimacy builds trust and support for one another in a marriage relationship. If we don't share our emotions whether they are positive or negative, how can we expect our spouse to give us emotional support-it's a two-way street. Emotional intimacy will affect sexual intimacy in a relationship-food for thought
4. Sexual intimacy is strongly rewarding and bonding for a husband and wife. Physical touch or the lack of- can make or break a relationship. Holding hands, kissing, hugging, and sexual intercourse are always of communicating sexual intimacy to one spouse. It is important that you know that you and your partner both have physical needs. Always remember that intimacy is an important aspect of your marriage life.
These are just a few suggestions on how to have a healthy, successful marriage.I would like to note that no marriage is perfect, only you and your spouse will know what it will take for you to solve the mystery of the successful marriage. Good luck.
By Dave Armstrong; Authentic dads.com
Expectant fathers beware! This is it. Your significant other has just told you the big news. How do you handle it? What's to expect now that you're expecting? As they say, prepare for the worst-expect for the best. But fear not, you are not alone.
First and foremost, what goes through the mind of a man after he hears the words “we're pregnant”? Relax, newbie dad, it's not the end of the world or the end of your relationship with your wife. Don't go nuts at the thought sleepless nights and midnight runs for formula for baby diapers. Having a baby will be one of the most rewarding events in your life. The minute you get a glimpse of that little bundle of joy, your knees will surely tremble. And the first time you hold your baby in your arms, you will never want to let go.
But how do you actually make the transition from husband to an expectant father? How do you handle the pressure and responsibility of having to look after such a fragile soul and adjusting to a whole new lifestyle. What is it like for a dad to be expecting.
Some first-time dads may curl at the pressure of providing for his new family. It is important to take note that this may be the real first act of courage by facing your fears and doubts. The more you feel pressured, the more you will be stressed. And if you are stressed, you are less likely to handle any situation or circumstance in the right way. Be inspired. Use that growing bulge on your wife as an inspiration to learn how the virtues of fatherhood will help strengthen and help nurture your new family. Aside from providing financial security, you should be in emotional pillar for your wife and new child. She will be undergoing drastic physical and emotional changes and it is your job to hold her hand and guide her through it all.
As a new father, the pregnancy stage is where parents prepare themselves for the impending responsibilities and changes in their lives. This is the time for asking questions and looking into the relationship of the parents to see how will be affected by parent. During the pregnancy, couples start to inquire about baby equipment, parenting styles, and child-rearing theories. Lots of decisions have to be made. Parents asked themselves; do we breast-feed or bottle-feed? Should we practice attachment parenting? What kind of parenting style is best to raise our children. Parents may adhere to a particular parenting style or a combination of two or more styles, depending on their and the child's temperament and their own culture. Coping with health issues and attending to the care your wife and new child may seem overwhelming at times, but perseverance will get you through it. Striving to endure through the calamity will help set you on the right path-being the husband your wife wants and desires and the father your child desperately needs in today's society.
Some expectant fathers may feel alone and left out during the pregnancy. It is vital that this dilemma is settled to avoid having hard feelings or grudges staying connected with your wife will enhance your parenting skills that you both go through the series of stages of your child's growth. Staying connected!!
By Dave Armstrong; Authentic dads.com
Too often, expectant fathers are left out of the picture or excluded unnecessarily. But this doesn't have to be the case, and it in fact shouldn't. The pregnancy, especially the third trimester of it, can be a perfect time for the father-to-be and mother-to-be to bond even more closely as they prepare together for parenthood. Both partners have special responsibilities and needs at this time, and none of these should be ignored.
Without a doubt, the mother-to-be will face both physical and emotional changes due to the pregnancy. She is the one who suffers through nine months of morning sickness, weight gain, and the numerous symptoms and difficulties of pregnancy. She will endure the pain of labor and childbirth, God bless moms and mothers-to-be. But a father-to-be has a lot on his mind during this period. He is as anxious as his partner-anxious about his imminent role as a father, and very concerned about fulfilling his financial responsibilities to provide for his family. His concerns and apprehensions are normal; they can be as great as the mother-to-be's anxiety, or may even exceed hers. But since he is not the one carrying the child and going through the obvious physical difficulties, he may distance himself and keep quiet about his worries.
The pregnancy, is typically a very demanding and anxiety-laden time for both partners. The difference between them is that the mother-to-be can freely give voice to her worries and unease, and receive the support she needs in return. The immediate family and close friends should realize that the expectant dad is also going through some emotional turmoil, even though he might not show any outward sign of it. He is entering a new chapter of life that he knows nothing of, and he is unsure if he is prepared for. The underlining fear of the unknown can be overwhelming in itself, but it even greater because he knows that a new life (their child) will be depending on them for its survival. Thus the expectant father goes through a psychological and emotional experience that is as profound as the expectant mother's.
The way to help relieve the tension is to have open communication with your partner. The most important thing to remember is that the concerns and anxieties of the dad-to-be may not be the same as his wife's worries, but they are very real to him. Many men feel that sharing such feeling's in a sensitive manner may be a sign of weakness, so being open-minded and talking about the concerns the both of you have about the pregnancy and parenting can bring a husband and wife closer together. The pregnancy will become more intimate and joint experience for the both of them.
Another important thing is to become involved in as many activities during pregnancy as possible. He can attend classes with her, go to appointments together, and get some great parenting resources online together. The more a dad-to-be is involved, the more he wont feel excluded or alienated. He will feel more connected to their child, more "hands on" and more confident in his role as dad. This can help lesson the fear of the imminent unknown and stress.
Finally, expectant fathers should know that their are support groups and organizations that they can join to get tips or advise whenever they need it. In the past, fathers tended to shy away from any groups or forums, but they are now more open to receiving advise, as well as to giving help to those who need it through parent and dad sites online.
By Dave Armstrong; Athenticdads.com
Integrity, compassion, confidence, perseverance, bravery, and humility are the traits that exemplify the true nature of fathering. Integrity demonstrated by a dad affirms that he is trustworthy and dependable, he says what he means and means what he says. Compassionate about staying connected to his family and providing for them. A dads confidence is about being self-assured in his being and the positive example he sets before his family (it is not arrogance). Fathers demonstrate perseverance and bravery when they endure life's trials and reject passivity. His family see's courage established when facing difficult circumstances. A dads humility puts his families needs before his own, there is no room for self-centeredness. It's basically a male instinct to provide for their families needs. Being faithful and teaching Christian values are affirming attributes a dad can share with his family.
Fatherhood is also about taking care of the kids, its not just a mothers role. They should set positive examples of a husband to their mother and how a father is attentive to their emotional growth. Sons and daughters need to see a model of male maturity in action. We lead by example with our kids, they watch us in our friendships and how we communicate. Brick by brick we are building a solid foundation that will not easily falter.
Being a good father is a hard task. You have to balance work and family. In today's highly volatile and ever-changing job market, job security is fast becoming a thing of the past. Hundreds of thousands of people are laid off each year, and this figure is on the rise. The first thing is to realize that being laid off is not the end of the world. In fact, it might even turn out to be blessing in disguise- a mandatory career change! Utilize it as a chance to reflect on why you were laid off and what the next stage is. That's living out perseverance! Both parents today work hard to keep the family intact, secure and safe.
The world needs fathers, true fathers. It needs fathers with leadership and vision. A kind of father who leads and takes on full responsibility of his wife and children, someone who faces problems head on without turning his back and someone who looks after the welfare of his family. Having a vision is what completes a man. At the heart of a father’s vision is his dream for his family and works hard towards the fulfillment of that dream. He spends every waking day with the purpose of making his wife happy, raising his children well, and taking part in building a good community. He is a man of action and accepts leadership both in his family and community life.
A father play's an essential role imparting a spiritual foundation to their sons and daughters. It will strengthen family values and help us envision our role as a father. When we encourage christian values within our families- we will never go wrong. Whether you are married, divorced, stepparent, grandparent,coach, or teacher- you have the influence and means to steer today's children in the right direction. Although most of us honor our own dads this time of year with special gifts and personalized cards, lets not forget about the other men who are influential in the lives of our kids.
By Dave Armstrong; Authenticdads.com
It's a mixture of excitement and fear when a man becomes a new father. Being a father is a dream to some, but to others it may bring on a huge sense of anxiety.Though the pressures of life and work can cloud a mans vision of fathering children, it will be double the challenge for any man raised without a genuine father figure in his own childhood. Fortunately there are four key points that all guys should take note to help them envision their role as a dad more clearly:
- First and foremost, a dad should know that they are going to be the main male influence in their child's life. It's important to know that your character, beliefs, and values will often be imitated by your son or daughter. Though a lot of factors influence a child's life like peers and school, it's still their parents they first look up to and take after. It's the example one sets and the words he uses (positive or negative) that will have an impact on their own behaviors.
- The second point that a new father should know is how to balance career and family. We demonstrate our work ethic to our sons and daughters more than we know. Most times a lot of us men simply adapt to the habits our own fathers lived out. If one strives for financial provision without securing the emotional stability at home, it will be like building a solid foundation on sand-a blueprint for disaster.
- I think that most of us dads feel that it's our duty as a husband/father to be able to sustain the basic needs like food and shelter, but it's equally important that a child feels their fathers presence as they are growing up. If it is ones first time to be a father, that there is more to fatherhood provision than your career and handyman around the house. A dad needs to actively involve his time and attention when it comes to his family. Our sons and daughters need to see positive fathering in action.
- By spending quality time with your children, you will encourage positive behavior. Disciplining a child is one of the most important-yet difficult roles of being a parent. Effective discipline teaches a child to develop a sense of responsibility and will be more self-disciplined later in life. Parents must be consistent when disciplining. If the parents are inconsistent in any way, the kids will find it hard to respect mom or dad and will often encourage misbehaving.
In closing, every new father should know that there is no such thing as perfect parenting. No matter how hard a dad tries to protect their children, they will eventually have some slips, trips and falls. As parents, we should not blame ourselves. We have to acknowledge the fact that as time goes by our soon to be young adult (kids) will be stepping out little by little making their own life decisions, and making mistakes as they grow is a part of the life-learning process. Whats most important is that their father is with them along the way.
By Dave Armstrong: Authenticdads.com
Why are men sometimes blind to the problems which exist in our relationships? I know, for myself, that I get so absorbed watching the ground immediately in front of me for the next two or three steps, but I forget to glance up to see if I’m going in the right direction. There is really no area in any man’s life that has more potential for improvement than his relationships. Although the marriage is not the only relationship in a dads life; it certainly should considered the most important.
One important area in a man’s life is his relationship with his wife and the entire household. This is where a man’s fullest potential is unleashed and developed. The bond between a husband and wife serves as their children’s standard on how a married life is lived. You and your wife are modeling marriage and the relationship between a husband and wife. Your son is keeping an eye on how you take the role of a provider, how you love and respect their mother and how you take care of the entire family. Your daughter, on the other hand, is likewise keeping tabs on how she should be respected and regarded by her future partner in life.
Modeling your married life greatly influences your children’s outlook and perception about marriage.Your son is watching how you relate to your wife, in return this will reflect how he will treat the women in his life. And your daughter is also taking note watching to see how she should be treated in her future relationships and marriage. Your marriage will affect your child's perspectives and practices in their own marriages. Your children’s mother is a nurturer, but she is also your wife, and one of the best gift’s a dad can give his children is to love his wife. Before one of your children marries, they will pattern it to their own parents’ and see if a foundational marriage is attainable. By modeling a good and healthy married life will allow your children to understand and identify things that will make the marriage work as seen in your relationship.
To bring my point home, you are your children’s mirror. They apply what they’ve learned from your marriage to their own relationships. So there must be no room for failure. Of course, you will struggle keeping the marriage alive and you will face failures, that’s part of being human. But how you stand from a crippling fall will have a great impact to your children. Finally, show your children how their mother is loved. Loving and appreciating your wife is the greatest expression of being a man and a gift to your children.
Most people experience genuine friendship when they were young. Remember those high school and college days when we were just surrounded by a circle of people whom we call our friends. But as time flies, as you graduate, take on a new career path and get married, our priorities change. We no longer feel the special needs of being surrounded by friends as our wives and children mostly fill the emptiness. Hence, the perceived need is not that intensified.
As a divorced dad, I somehow felt that life won’t be really complete without the presence of trusted friends. Sure, you will have some in the workplace, but only few cases of real and genuine friendships succeed. I can attest to the need and significance of having genuine male friendships in my life. When I was going through some tough times, it was difficult for me to organize my thoughts and reasoning. I used to say, that divorce was a reason for becoming the father and man that I am today. But it was the genuine friendships of men who are effective fathers that cleared my clouded reasoning and set me on the right track.They have helped me get back on track and showed me the way. They’ve also become very good examples and role models as other men’s experiences on family life and parenting have inspired me to be the best father and man that I can ever be. Sometimes other men’s experiences and how they've navigated their own lives through uncharted waters of fathering can be the kick in the seat to keep us on track. My friends are my reality checkers. But to get to this level of friendship entails trust, a good amount of time and honesty. The reward: a great and true friend.
By Dave Armstrong; Authenticdads.com
To say that the society still has scores of intact families would be an understatement. I personally think it is more realistic to say that the purpose of fatherhood has lost its way. In our society, the very definition of a father has been distorted. Have we therefore forgotten what dads do? What real men are all about? There is nothing more painful to witness than men who have forgotten what a man is. Or even worse, to see sons and daughters growing up without real men to father them, because most of us have never had masculinity modeled in our own childhood. It’s easy to point fingers or blame society, but men have become fathers without having seen a positive example of fatherhood and what the role entails. Positive or negative, we are affected by our own father’s. The father has lost the confidence that he is naturally important to his children, to guide them and help them grow. Fathers in particular could no longer define what fatherhood is all about. So fathers are taken out from home entirely because they no longer know the true essence of fatherhood.
Redefining fatherhood entails the right understanding of being a man and that a big part of that masculinity is fathering. Men are highly regarded in the society known for their power and might. But, along with this might also comes great responsibility of protecting and providing for those within the sphere of influence. In actual fact, any man can father regardless of having biological children or not. Fathering is a vast scope. It has a great influence. It doesn't stop from having children, but it further develops in nurturing, shaping and influencing people. You can be a father without a child so long as you know how to become a good example of what fatherhood is to many.
Fatherhood is best described by how a man lives his life. Modeling how he influences others and being a man of value greatly affects how a child views him. Values are seen in how a person lives, more than it is learned. Children became knowledgeable not by merely listening to what we say, but through watching our lives. They serve as our silent spectators and every second of our lives are our unconscious way of saying, “Follow me”. So will you be living a life unworthy of your child’s eyes? Bear in mind, a life spent leading and guiding your child (unconsciously or not) help them become the best in life. You may have lost your confidence in yourself in the past due to strings of hardships and hosts of failures, but take heart that your children don’t see these failures as your weaknesses. They don’t look down on your weaknesses alone, but they observe how you stood when standing wasn’t easy. This is where you will build further trust and confidence in your children.
Finally, remember that your beliefs will be ultimately your children’s beliefs. Model in your child how a man is and what a father does. Allow him to become a man of great integrity and courage with a firm belief in God. In your daughter, inspire in her the toughness and gentleness of a man that will be her benchmark in finding her true love. Fatherhood and your influence will extend from generations to generations. So make that influence a good one and be well deserving of being called a “Father”. You can never hide from the enormous power, responsibility and accountability of fatherhood. Now, that’s the real essence of fathering redefined.
By Dave Armstrong; Authenticdads.com