In his book, “The Power of Habit,” Charles Duhigg argues that the key to losing weight, raising exceptional children, becoming more productive, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. I tend to agree with his assessment.
Habits are powerful factors in our lives. They shape our personalities and identify our priorities. As a dad, I have developed both good and bad parenting habits. On one hand, I’m dedicated to reading a bedtime story to my kids every night. Even when I travel, I connect to Skype or Facetime to make sure that my kids and I don’t miss our story time. On the other hand, I have a bad habit of getting so consumed in my work that I become dismissive of my kids’ needs.
When I notice a bad habit has taken root in my life, I work hard to replace it with something more aligned with core principles and beliefs. I’m sure that many dads share my struggle. If we’re not careful, bad habits can become permanent and control our lives. Developing the right habits is crucial to our success as parents. Just as world-class athletes are habitual in their training, dads must also focus on the habits that make a difference in our children’s lives. By focusing on the correct habits, we become empowered and effective.
Over the years, I’ve discovered seven habits that have helped me to be a more effective father.
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