THE BEST FATHERLY ADVICE ON THE INTERNET
To save you some time, I scoured the internet on the hunt for the VERY best fatherly pieces of advice out there. Whether you have an incredibly wise dad who has already taught you a lot, or a dad who has been an example of what not to do, here is the best of the collective wisdom out there to digest this Father’s Day.
01. Always have a guy.
I can still see my dad calling up the owner of the best bakery in Pittsburgh. “Reg,” he would invariably say, “It’s Augie, Reg.” Soon, we would be on our way to buy bake goods for $.50 cents on the dollar. My father “had a guy” for everything. He never paid retail, and cash rarely changed hands. How did he do it? First, my father genuinely liked people. He made friends everywhere. Secondly, he was always looking for opportunities to do favors for others. “Never wait till you need something,” he often told me, “if you want people to help you offer to help them first.” I took his “pay it forward” advice to heart. Whenever I need something, my first question is, “Who do I know?” And whenever I have something, my first question is “Who can I share this with?” Whether it is bake goods or billion-dollar enterprises, the best people always “have a guy.”
02. Be humble.
We have nothing to prove. But we have everything to offer.
03. Don’t dismiss the outliers.
[My father] had his own “rubber band theory” — we were to inhabit the outlier’s point of view. We did not have to agree, but when we returned to our own center, he believed, our minds, like rubber bands, would have been permanently stretched.
04. Don’t underestimate the role of chance in life.
It’s easy to assume that wealth and poverty are caused by the choices we make, but it’s even easier to underestimate the role of chance in life.
The families, values, countries and generations we’re born into, as well as the people we happen to meet along the way, all play a bigger role in our outcomes than most people want to admit.
While you should believe in the values and rewards of hard work, it’s also important to understand that not all success is a result of hard work, and that not all poverty is due to laziness. Keep this in mind when forming opinions about others, including yourself.
05. Never lose your sense of childlike wonder.
A born practical joker, Dad loves dressing up and acting silly. He approaches situations with a light and humorous touch that is rare in business leaders. Dad has never believed that being ruthless achieves anything. To see the lightness and fun in every situation and bring a human touch to everything he does is as much a part of him as breathing. As kids, he put up with us interrupting important phone calls or disrupting meetings almost daily! He never once told us to make ourselves scarce. I once called him about an exam result in medical school and was babbling away when, after a few minutes, Dad said: Holly, darling, this is such great news. Can I call you back? I’m just doing a speech in front of 20,000 people!” I still can’t believe he picked up the phone on stage! Thank you, Dad, for your wonderful laugh, your adventurous spirit, and your childlike sense of wonder. You make being alive so much fun! Thanks for confirming our Grandad’s motto: “Isn’t life wonderful.”
06. Always think about your impact on the world.
“The best advice my dad ever gave me was ‘Make the world a better place.’ Every day when my father got home from work, he would ask me, ‘How did you make the world a better place today?’ This mattered to me then, and matters to me even more now, because it implied that I was important and powerful enough to impact the whole world. Dad’s advice also instilled in me the value of public service and contributing to the greater good. His daily question was so much more expansive than ‘How are you?’ or ‘What’s for dinner?’ — Nikki, 42, Massachusetts
07. Always try to think about conversations with the end goal in mind.
“If you know what you want your desired outcome to be, you can be more strategic in how you approach the situation. I first learned this lesson after voicing my frustrations with a challenge I was facing. At the time, my dad convinced me that I could be more successful in my approach if I were more certain of how I wanted the situation to end up. Since then, I’ve found this advice to be useful in both my personal and professional life. When put into practice, this concept forces me to be less reactive and emotional. It also allows me to invite others to be a part of the desired solution, which–ultimately–results in a discussion that feels more positive for all involved.”
–Alex Bingham, president and CEO of The Little Gym International, a children’s enrichment and development franchise with over 390 locations worldwide
08. The easiest way to calm your fears is to just get started.
“One piece of advice from my grandfather: ‘Your eyes scare you, but your hands give you joy.’
This helps me every time I feel insecure about trying something new. It reminds me that if I start working towards my goal, most of the fears and obstacles I see in the beginning of a project will simply disappear. In other words, one bulletproof way of conquering your fear of failure is to simply start working on your project.” – Florin Bechis, founder of Rethink Home
09. Don’t be afraid to be wrong.
“I distinctly remember my dad telling me, ‘Don’t be afraid to say, I don’t know how to answer that question, but let me find someone who does.’ It’s a theory I’ve applied to a lot of places, jobs included. It made me really embrace not knowing things and how to ask for more information (really useful as a journalist!). We have a lot of fear of being wrong, but it’s OK (and expected) to be wrong every once in a while.” —Krysta Scripter, Editorial Intern
10. There’s a seat for every heine.
“Dad has three daughters, and though he grew up during the Depression and WWII, in what was undoubtedly a rough period, he was always a gentleman in front of us. He had a lot of sayings that he inherited from his father, who died long before any of us were born, some of which are pretty old-school now. The one that I love the best is, ‘there’s a seat for every heinie.’ Didn’t get that job? You’ll get the next one, because ‘there’s a seat for every heinie.’ That boy asked another girl to the prom, not you? Maybe it’s for the best, because ‘there’s a seat for every heinie’, and this time it’s not you. And so on. My dad, the philosopher.” -Meredith Gronroos
Dads have a hard job.
I like to think most fathers do the best they can. We don’t always make it easy for them, do we? (Wink.)
I hope that you have a wonderful dad in your life to celebrate this Father’s Day. But even if you don’t, I hope you can celebrate the wise advice of these men who have done their best to be good examples of what fathers should be.