Imagine pulling up to a red light and looking across at the vehicle beside you. You see a cool dad driving a rad jeep with his two children in the backseat – windows down, heads bobbing, and hands in the air. Blaring out the speakers is Aloe Blacc’s “The Man.”
In that moment you think, now that’s an awesome dad. His appearance says he’s got it together. He’s dripping swag and his kids are bowing to his kingship. Truth be told though – dad is driving a Jeep… Cherokee that is. In reality the guy you see is just another dad trying to survive one day at a time. Maybe in that rare moment you just happen to see his children not fighting and screaming at each other for once. Maybe in that moment you see a dad doing his best to hide his fears, worries, struggles, and if he were honest, he would tell you he’s wondering not only how he got here, but what happens next. Maybe you’ve figured out by now, I’m that dad.
If you care to know who I am and what to expect going forward, let me first welcome you to my space and tell you who I am. Much of what I hold dear in life revolves around my role as a father. I consider my children to be the greatest gift and responsibility that I have. The saying that you can’t take it with you when you die is only partly true. I say that you can take the greatest treasure you have on this Earth with you to Heaven – your children. Yes, if you’re wondering, I am a person of faith. I am ultimately who I am today because of what the Creator of the Cosmos has done for me, and He can do the same for you. We’ll chat about that from time to time, but hey, if you’re not a religious or spiritual person, don’t click away just yet!
This space is simply where I intend to share things that I value – and hopefully, you’ll find some value in it to. Essentially, I want to help you optimize and simplify your life. I don’t claim to be an expert at anything. Unlike other writers, I’m not necessarily trying to carve out a niche, but I do want to make a difference. I started this blog for the simple reason that I care about you. Yes, you. Whether you’re a friend, whether we’ve met before or not, or whether we’ll ever meet face to face. If you’re a father trying to mentor your children, a husband trying to be the man of your home, a single parent trying to do the best you can to provide, even a young professional wondering how to manage your finances and invest for your future, or whether you just feel like you’re nobody from nowhere, my heart is for you! Life may not have turned out the way that you had planned, and if so, that makes two of us! It’s going to be okay though. There’s still hope and meaning for your life. Better days are ahead. So focus on what you can control at this moment and keep moving forward.
With that being said, if you don’t know me personally, I hope that as we interact in this space together, you’ll come to view me as a friend. I’m here to listen. Most of what I have to say will always come from experiences and interacting with others, which leads me to a powerful principle I’ve been trying to practice – try listening to someone today – I mean truly listen. Take the time to understand their story before you insert your own. Before you give a dose of wise counsel to your co-workers, friends, spouse, or children, live through their eyes and take a few steps in their shoes. As Dr. Stephen Covey put it so profoundly, “Seek first to understand, then be understood.” Instead of looking from above with the assumption that you have the solution, get ground level before you communicate. Your age, experience, or victory in a particular area doesn’t automatically mean that your diagnosis will solve their dilemma – so try hopping down in their hole. Take a lifeline with you and say, “I hear you. It doesn’t matter how you got here. Just know I’m with you. I care for you. Now let’s see how we can get out – together!”
From this moment on, it’s not about me… or me having something profound to say. It’s about us… and how we can live better, influence better, and be better. I want to be the best me, and I want you to be the best you. With that being said, I hope you’ll stick with me. My desire is that something that’s said in our future conversations will resonate with you. So, however you got here, thanks for taking the time to hear me out. Let’s keep talking! And the next time you see a dad making a difference in his children, his wife, family, friends, or his community, give him a shout out and tell everybody he’s the man!
AKA Dad with Swag